IHG Partners With BEKL for New-Build voco South Melbourne

Australia, Melbourne, Victoria. June 11, 2020

IHG's colourful voco™ brand continues to make a splash in Australasia with the seventh hotel, voco South Melbourne, added to the pipeline.

Scheduled to open in early 2023 in partnership with forward-thinking Melbourne-based developers, BEKL, the new-build voco South Melbourne will be a different way to stay at the northern end of St Kilda Road, where accommodation options are currently limited to serviced apartments.

Experienced hotel architect and interior designer, Plus Architecture, will design the 171 rooms focusing on the ‘Me Time' concept, where guests can look forward to a great night's sleep with premium beds, innovative lighting and user-friendly technology, as well as superior showers to start the day well. Beyond guest rooms, the brand's signature ‘voco Life' concept will be front and centre, with vibrant and sociable restaurant and bar spaces that work for different moments of the day, so that guests always have space to relax and enjoy themselves. It will also offer four meeting spaces and a gym.

Abhijay Sandilya, IHG's VP Development, Australia & Japan, said: "It's quite astounding to reflect on the fact that IHG launched the voco brand just 24 months ago, and we already have two open hotels and another five in the pipeline, three of them in Victoria. Clearly it's striking the right chord with guests and owners. The new-build voco South Melbourne will bring unique design and memorable guest experiences to this great location, and will complement our voco Melbourne Central, which is already under construction and scheduled to open later this year."

The announcement follows the signing of a management agreement with BEKL.

BEKL Managing Director Katherine Liu is looking forward to working with IHG, saying voco Hotels' shared passion for innovative design and lifestyle made it a natural fit for their South Melbourne property.

"Melbourne is one of the world's great cities and has always had an enviable events calendar, strong tourism and an increasing appetite for outstanding accommodation. Even after a challenging period over the past few months, we know Melbourne will bounce back better than ever, and we can't think of a better brand than voco to bring a unique personality to our South Melbourne property. We are proud to be partnering with IHG to open this exceptional hotel in 2023."

"We pride ourselves on creating quality, innovative, long-standing spaces that place an emphasis on the human experience, so it was important to us that our partners share that same vision and passion for what we are trying to achieve."

Located just 3km from the Melbourne CBD, voco South Melbourne will service the northern end of St Kilda Road, with upper-level rooms enjoying breathtaking, protected views across Melbourne's Shrine of Remembrance and the Royal Botanic Gardens. The hotel offers easy access to the St Kilda Road commercial precinct, Lakeside Stadium, Melbourne Sports & Aquatic Centre (MSAC), Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit, The Alfred Hospital, AAMI Park, Melbourne Arena, Rod Laver Arena, and Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG), as well as local parks, lakes, shops, schools, entertainment precincts and the CBD.

The signing of voco South Melbourne continues the rapid growth in IHG's upscale pipeline in Australasia, which includes seven Hotel Indigo properties, seven voco hotels, and three Crowne Plaza hotels that will open this year in Hobart, Adelaide and Sydney Darling Harbour.

IHG currently has 52 hotels operating under four brands in Australasia, including: InterContinental, Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn, voco and Holiday Inn Express, with another 38 in the pipeline.

*Numbers correct as at end 31 March 2020

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