Project of the week: Shangri-La Hotel Melbourne CBD


Images courtesy of SP Setia.

Our project of the week is the culmination of a luxurious twin tower that is currently being topped out in the Melbourne skyline.

Part of the Sapphire by the Gardens development in the Australian metropolis, the Shangri-La Hotel Melbourne CBD will occupy one of two 60+ story skyscrapers when it opens in the first quarter of 2024.

Striking facade

The five-star hotel will occupy the taller 62-storey tower, which will have a gross floor area of ​​approximately 57,114 m². The other tower will house 325 luxury apartments.

The 500-room Shangri-La Hotel Melbourne will feature a striking facade adorned with champagne gold fins. The facility will also feature the largest ballroom in the city’s CBD with elegant 20-foot ceilings. Other amenities include restaurants, a lounge and bar, a spa, a fitness center with a gym and yoga area, as well as a rooftop pool and a heated indoor pool.

Challenges of the Sky Bridge

The SP Setia Berhad Group development was designed by Fender Katsalidis in collaboration with Cox Architecture, with Multiplex acting as general contractor. The two towers overlook Melbourne’s World Heritage-listed Carlton Gardens and are connected two-thirds of the way up by a sky lounge.

Multiplex faced structural challenges related to the design of the skybridge. The construction team decided to create a temporary cantilevered deck beneath the structure to allow safe working access.

project progress

Groundbreaking for the project took place in 2018 and at the time the plan was for all development to be completed in 2021, with the hotel scheduled to start operations that year. However, project delays, likely due to the pandemic, mean construction is now due to be completed in early 2023, with the hotel expected to come online in 2024.

Both towers only peaked in early August. Graham Cottam, Managing Director of Multiplex, commented at the milestone ceremony: “The simultaneous construction of two towers requires exceptional planning and management, especially given complex construction and engineering works such as the iconic 46 story sky bridge.”

Datuk Choong Kai Wai, President and CEO of SP Setia added: “The completion of Sapphire by the Gardens and the Shangri-La will mark our fifth significant development in Melbourne.”

Ideal opening time

SP Setia has commissioned the project consultant Colliers with the marketing of the hotel development, which is about to enter the expansion phase. Gus Moors, Head of Hotels at Colliers, Australia said: “This architectural marvel is destined to become a Melbourne landmark for decades to come. This is a rare generational asset in one of the most culturally vibrant and desirable cities in the world, under the aegis of one of the world’s most renowned luxury hotel brands: Shangri-La.

“As the hotel market moves into rapid recovery mode across the country, the delivery timing for the Shangri-La will result in this 500-room property opening at an ideal time in the hotel cycle.”

Moors concluded, “Upon completion, the Shangri-La Melbourne will offer an unrivaled range of luxury accommodation, including approximately 500 spacious and well-appointed guest rooms, as well as exquisite family rooms – the first of their kind in Australia – featuring Horizon Club guest rooms. Premier and Presidential Suites on the upper floors.”


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