QH takes a look at The New Inchcolm Hotel’s incredible transformation – all due to the team at Robertsons Design Studio International (RDSI). More than 90 years have passed since the first foundation was laid at The New Inchcolm Hotel, though its function has certainly changed. The 1920s saw this building operating as a doctor’s office; now, it lives on as a five-star boutique hotel, resplendent in luxury.
“The building had wonderful heritage bones – like the terrazzo floors and an old iron cage lift with timber panelling – that we needed to enhance and complement,” says Ken Robertson, principal of RDSI. Julie Hooker, RDSI’s head designer on the project, agrees. “We worked closely with the owner, who had a definite passion for this old building,” she says.
The team at Robertsons set out to detail each room individually, taking every suite’s character and size into account. So, where some feature plush four-poster beds, others showcase the hotel’s original panelled walls. “The schemes are contemporary, but all complement and enhance the building’s natural beauty,” explains Julie.
Each room boasts its own bespoke bathroom; a floor to ceiling mirror, custom-made and hand-detailed, is the Inchcolm’s signature feature throughout. Further adding to the sense of ultimate opulence is the custom-designed carpet which took six months to design and make, and was especially flown in from Europe. It’s a nod to the hotel’s origins in the age of prosperity, where comfort and sumptuousness were synonymous, and adds to the lavish aura expertly portrayed by the Robertsons team in every design choice.
“We wanted to enhance the traditional architecture with all the modern comforts of a contemporary hotel, while creating a signature style in the heritage building that was uniquely Brisbane,” says Julie. The reception area takes its design cues from the Gilded Ageof America and England, exquisite in every detail. Floor-to-ceiling bookshelves and a gas fi replace offer the cushy comforts of home, while aged oak herringbone floors, book wallpaper and elegant imported detailings are warm, inviting and refined.
Wherever you look, the marriage of tradition and modern opulence is clearly harmonious, and it’s a sight which calls to every guest stepping over The New Inchcolm Hotel’s threshold. Julie describes it as ‘tailored luxury’, and it’s clear why. Throughout the hotel, the ambience is simply spectacular – the quiet murmur of decades past linger in every detail, while today’s crisp sense of grandeur boosts the antique splendour to new heights. It’s well worth a visit if the lap of luxury is your seat of choice.