You know you’re in for a treat when you’re visiting the world’s first dessert-themed hotel. Liquorice-inspired furniture, sweet wafting fragrances, in-room lolly jars. Put your Dentist on standby, you’re at The Adelphi.
Back in the 1990s, The Adelphi was to hotels what Cindy Crawford, Naomi Campbell and Co. were to the modelling industry. Remember? So sassy, so chic. High profile guests were lured to The Adelphi from far and wide to experience this exclusive ‘Boutique’ concept, where large-chain anonymity had been eschewed for small-scale spunk and stark, bold design. The spectacular ninth floor swimming pool that overhung the street below was the topic on everyone’s pouted lips.
But, the 90’s came and went. Boutique hotels began to crop up everywhere. Naomi Campbell threw one too many tantrums. The Adelphi’s glamorous edge waned, and it wasn’t until quite recently that the new owners decided it was time for a total reinvention – a model-worthy makeover – to reclaim The Adelphi’s crown as Queen of Cool. Enter the funky folk at Hachem.
Charged with the task of reinvigorating the hotel’s entire persona, the incredibly talented, can-work-with-anything Fady Hachem and his team set about conceiving a totally unique concept that would influence all aspects of the design. And so the dessert theme was born. It’s all about engaging the senses – an experiential treat that stimulates the soul. And hats off to Hachem… The Adelphi is one big sensory delight.
So just how do you achieve such an audacious personality transplant?
Easy! You let the delectable theming lead the way. Hachem has conjured a palette of magical finishes that not only engage the senses but when combined, result in a totally unique, very edgy and fresh finish.
Take the lobby. Overhead, the dark reflection of the glassy ceiling is reminiscent of melting chocolate. Swinging lounges and feature chairs hover above the floor, while the licorice stools (oh my, these are just too DIVINE) and the cherry-inspired lighting make decadent statements all on their own. A ghostly silhouette of a wire horse makes a majestic centrepiece to the room, while the carriage it tows serves as reception. It’s whimsical and sophisticated, all at once.
Om Nom is the hotel’s dessert-themed restaurant, and while breakfast, lunch and dinner are served here too, it’s the absolutely beautiful and downright delicious sweet menu, presented like a painstakingly crafted piece of art, that will have you drooling from the get-go.
The theming continues in room, but fear not – these are places of slumber, not sensory overloading. The scene is understated, with neutral bedding and walls, letting the more eclectic artworks and furniture do the hero thing with a striking mixture of texture, pattern, contrast and colour at play. In fact, the rooms are my favourite aspects of the whole hotel, as spectacular as the rest of it is. They are just so expertly resolved in a way that is a simultaneous mix of both showstopping glamour and homely comfort. Tick.
GO HERE IF
You like your boutique hotels to err on the side of small and special.
SIX WORD SUMMARY
Unpretentious Indulgence With Sense-Stimulating Design
IN THE ‘HOOD
Ahem. You’re in Flinders Lane. What ISN’T in this neighbourhood? Just go for a walk and you’ll be blown away. Join the queue at Chin Chin for a bite to eat, then wander further for a nightcap amidst garden party-inspired décor on the rooftop at Madam Brussels. Or for a refined, urban-chic ambience and delectable food, stroll a few steps to Coda.
From $285 per night, room only.