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- Melbourne’s hottest new hotel: A look inside The Prince in St Kilda after a four-year redesign
Melbourne’s hottest new hotel: A look inside The Prince in St Kilda after a four-year redesign
It has been described as the “jack of all trades” – and now that The Hotel des Princes emerged from its four-year renovation, which has never been so precise.
The hotel has stood proudly in the St Kilda landscape since the mid 1800s and is known for its rich history, art deco hotel and iconic music room.
The venue was home to the US Army Officers Club during WWII and was proudly Melbourne’s first LGBTQIA+ friendly venue.
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And now, after a four-year overhaul under chief executive Andy Ryan, The prince is now complete.
While the renovation is significant, when you stay, eat, drink and party on site, respecting its history is paramount. It looks like a big party.
Art deco housing
Many may know The Prince for its rich history, lively bar, or delicious restaurant, but the fact that it’s a 39-room boutique hotel shouldn’t be overlooked.
Comfort, calm and practicality are the words that come to mind during a stay at Le Prince. There are five styles of rooms and they are all spacious and bright.
Rooms start at $195 and there’s a Deluxe Room, Deluxe Bath, Superior, Corner, and Premier Suite.
If space is your thing, the corner suite won’t disappoint, with a freestanding bathtub, sitting area, dining table that seats three, and a huge full-length mirror that easily seats three side-by-side.
The Corner Suite’s original balcony is also a special nod to the building’s past life and adds a warm apartment-style feel – and fantastic people-watching opportunities with Acland Street below.
And while noise can be expected above the bustle of the Esplanade, tram lines, and local bars, rooms are surprisingly spared the hubbub.
This means that guests who prefer a relaxing night can do so with little more than a ‘ding’ tram.
To book a table
On the second floor of the building (or a few steps from your hotel room) is the vibrant and elegant Princes’ dining room.
The space once housed the gourmet restaurant About, and due to its popularity, there were big shoes to fill after it closed in 2018.
It’s safe to say that the Prince Dining Room exceeds all expectations with its airy art deco ambiance, intimate curved booths, stunning cuisine with a soulful Mediterranean accent, and extensive wine list.
The menu changes frequently, but one of the current dishes diners will find is a melting burrata with smoked tomato and sweet walnuts (be sure to pair this one with the 36-hour fermented bread that’s blistered in the oven. wood).
Others include a refreshing and light albacore tuna with green chilli, verjuice and citrus, prawn tagliatelle with a crayfish sauce, tomatoes and red peppers, a butcher’s cut with chimichurri, a jus of onion and red wine and sides of smoked carrots with harissa or roasted beets with radicchio.
A current star of the show is the Pan-Seared Spring Greens and Pesto Gnocchi with a generous helping of Parmesan cheese.
And a word of advice – ALWAYS leave room for dessert when you’re at the Prince dining room, as you might end up with a tarta de quesos (the lightest cheesecake you’ll ever eat) with a hot spicy sauce which can be likened to mulled wine.
There is a very extensive wine list with Italian, Spanish and French drops, as well as just about everything Mitchelton cellar in Nagambie has to offer.
But if you arrive early for your reservation and want to add a personal touch to the meal, upgrade to Little Prince Wine. There you can select a bottle to take upstairs for lunch or dinner.
And with 4000 bottles, there is bound to be something for everyone.
Have a drink
Speaking of Little Prince Wineit’s not just a boutique, but also offers a menu and monthly tastings with some of Australia’s best winemakers.
The venue is located on the lowest level of the building and is perfect for a relaxed evening with a small European menu of antipasti and of course – good wine.
And if someone wants to be even more intimate for dinner, they can reserve the venue’s wine cellar for a private event. It sits under a flight of stairs, has an earthy aroma, moody vibes, and seats about ten people.
Although The Prince has undergone a major overhaul, one area where the story can still be felt while walking is the Prince Bar.
Located on Fitzroy Street, guests can come in for a drink, a long lunch, or a delicious breakfast.
The menu is pub style with all the classics including a beef burger, chicken cutlets, pork and fennel sausage rolls and polenta crisps.
From Monday to Friday, there is also happy hour from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.
When you’re looking for venues that have boutique hotel rooms, a boutique winery, three separate dining venues, and can also host weddings and other major events, a regional winery may immediately come to your mind. spirit.
But The prince has all of these things – and more – while being located in the heart of St Kilda, a stone’s throw from the CBD.