Urban Escape – COMO The Treasury, Perth
Como has given its signature Midas touch to a century-old Perth landmark embarking on its next chapter as a smart city retreat.
Hotel: COMO The Treasury, Perth
Best for: Rediscovering Perth from a base that perfectly unites history and the future.
Traveller: Cathy Wagstaff
This 48-room hotel is the centrepiece of the newly revitalised historical heart of Perth. Red-brick façades once housing the State Buildings (comprising Treasury, Post Office, and Land and Titles) now give way to light, bright spaces that invite in not just guests, but the public, too, with a host of fascinating dining venues (Thai cuisine doyen David Thompson has opened his casual eatery, Long Chim, here). The 19th-century past of the building is celebrated in unusual ways – vault doors, studded floors, metal shutters – all of which contrasts with the distinctly modern art collection, drawn from the personal collection of owner and developer, Adrian Fini.
I’m already a fan of COMO’s chic simplicity, having visited both of COMO’s properties in Thailand last year, but it’s the focus on wellbeing – even in urban environments – that makes these hotels unique. I experience the perfect night’s sleep enveloped in pure cotton Beltrami linen atop, and wake for an invigorating breakfast at Post, where the choice of COMO Shambhala Cuisine options makes healthy eating a colourful delight. The hotel also operates Wildflower, a rooftop restaurant that food critic Rob Broadfield named the best in Western Australia.
The classic pared-back elegance is evident in the colour scheme, which moves from stark black and white in Post, to earthy tones and greens in Wildflower, to calming brown, beige and white in the rooms. Architect Kerry Hill’s design opens the building, but it’s not all original lines and wrought iron detailing; a look in the pool (open only to hotel guests) reveals a forward-thinking aesthetic of blond wood and light.
It wouldn’t be a true COMO experience though if I didn’t sample the treatments on offer at Shambhala Urban Retreat, the group’s holistic approach to a spa. My therapist Carrieanne incorporates a calming blend of essential oils to rejuvenate my body in the 75-minute signature COMO Shambhala Massage. The retreat offers everything from yoga classes to personal training. It’s just the property Perth needs as it moves into a new era; a place to reflect on the past and prepare for the future.