One of the latest additions to Melbourne’s glassy cityscape is the five-star Marriott Docklands, the first Marriott-branded hotel to open in Melbourne in 20 years. The new waterside destination is only about two kilometres from the CBD.
Designed by locally based firm DKO Architecture, the shiny petal-shaped building – made up of two 17-storey towers – resembles a pair of unfurling flower buds with greenery draped over the edges. The dual towers are bridged together by a vertical garden, while inside they house 189 smartly appointed guestrooms.
But the piece de resistance is on the rooftop: a 28-metre heated outdoor infinity pool. It’s the Melbourne equivalent of the famous one at Singapore’s Marina Bay Sands hotel. Wade through the wet-edge pool’s shallows while overlooking Port Phillip Bay, the Bolte Bridge and the adjacent skyrises. Also on the rooftop is Sunset House, a relaxed bar with emerald and brass flourishes, and a fitness centre with floor-to-ceiling windows.
Below, each room draws inspiration from Melbourne’s bluestone architecture, with dark grey blackout curtains, and a cobalt-blue rug splayed across the timber flooring. Curvaceous windows make you feel even more a part of the skyline, and you’ll also find a “Made in Melbourne” minibar stocked with food and booze from local producers.
The lobby – clad in natural stone that’s contrasted by a commanding gold light fixture – houses upscale bar Ada’s (named after trailblazer Ada Coleman, who was head bartender at London’s Savoy Hotel in the early 1900s). For dinner, follow the winding marble walls to Archer’s, a fine-dining restaurant in a cavernous, bunker-like space. You might find Wagyu beef tartare with crackling-like puffed beef tendon or a tremendously cheesy pomme aligot (mashed potato) alongside the butcher’s cut of the day. It’s all curated by the hotel's food and beverage partner, leading local caterer Peter Rowland.
All in all – despite its just-out-of-the-way Docklands location – the new Marriott has an unexpectedly resort-style feel that’s just as much of a drawcard for out-of-towners as it is for Melbourne natives looking for a different kind of staycation.
Marriott Melbourne Docklands
15 Waterfront Way, Docklands, Melbourne