Canberra’s first Meriton building on the road with last DA submitted

Artist's impression of the Meriton building

An artist’s impression of the Meriton Suites building proposed to the corner of Allara Street and Nangari Street in the Canberra CBD. Photo: Fender Katsalidis.

The development of Canberra’s first Meriton building appears to be continuing after the viability of such a company was called into question at the end of 2020 due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the tourism industry.

The last of four development applications has been filed for a 16-story, 207-suite building on the 1734-square-foot site at 40 Allara Street 40 in the city, which is about 50 feet high or close to the RL617 building height rule level.

The Meriton Suites Apartment business model provides a larger accommodation style that is a hybrid between a hotel and a serviced apartment.

The $ 65 million Fender Katsalidis-designed project includes a hotel, three ground-floor leases, community facilities for guests, and two levels of 65-space basement parking and bicycle storage.

The hotel will offer a range of unit sizes, including studios and units with one, two and three bedrooms with open balconies and two penthouses.

Artist's impression of Meriton Suites entrance and lobby in Canberra CBD.

An artist’s impression of the Meriton Suites entrance and lobby in the Canberra CBD. Photo: Fender Katsalidis.

It is advertised on a variety of short-term stays, such as holidaymakers, students, young professionals, graduates and other users visiting Canberra.

The common facilities on level 15 include a swimming pool, outdoor landscaped terrace, gym, spa and sauna rooms.

On the ground floor, a spacious double-height lobby is proposed for the hotel at the corner of Allara Street and Nangari Street, with the remaining street façade reserved for the three retail leases and service entrances located in the rear corner of Rabaul Lane.

The hotel’s arrival and drop off will include valet parking and parking spaces along Nangari Street.

The south façade includes a series of hanging gardens, illuminated by light from the underside of level one.

“By hanging beyond the Nangari Street hotel entrance and retail offerings, the hanging landscape design seeks to create a unique experience and visual aesthetic within the city block,” says DA.

In 2019, the Meriton Group announced plans for the hotel project at the Allara Street site, which it bought from Australian Unity for $ 23 million, and said at the time that moving to the national capital was a logical development for the Meriton Suites brand.

Artist's impression of communal pool and terrace on level 15 in the Meriton Suites in Canberra.

An artist’s impression of the communal pool and terrace on level 15 of the Meriton Suites in Canberra. Photo: Fender Katsalidis.

Development applications for demolition of the existing building, construction of the basement car park and lease changes for the car park have already been submitted.

This application is also looking for a rental variant to change ‘net lettable area’ to gross floor area (GFA) and increase GFA as well as add ‘serviced apartments’ as use.

The southern end of the city is under renovation, and the proposer believes this project will contribute to that.

Meriton owner and property mogul Harry Triguboff said earlier this year that he had decided to convert up to five proposed serviced apartment towers, planned for Australia’s east coast, into residential complexes.

He attributed the decision to a shortage of tourists and falling accommodation prices, exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Sir. Triguboff also said at the time that he was unsure whether he would continue with the Canberra project.

“Canberra may go further – maybe it will work, we’ll see,” he said Australians.

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