Freo's View

ROOFTOP BAR FOR NATIONAL HOTEL

Posted in accommodation, city of fremantle, heritage, hospitality, hotel, Uncategorized by freoview on April 23, 2018

 

National

 

Good to see that the Fremantle National Hotel will become even better with a new rooftop bar and 12 luxury hotel rooms on the top floor.

If all goes to plan they will open in September this year.

Roel Loopers

FREMANTLE MARINE HOUSE FOR SALE

Posted in accommodation, city of fremantle, property, real estate, Uncategorized by freoview on April 11, 2018

 

Marine House

 

The beautiful Marine House on the corner of Essex Street and Marine Terrace, opposite the Esplanade Hotel, is for sale.

This would be a good location and opportunity for the hotel to expand and put more hotel rooms in the building.

Staff of the Marine and Harbours Department will be relocated from Marine House to Kings Square by the end of 2019, once the Sirona Capital development has been completed.

Roel Loopers

WOOLSTORES DEVELOPMENT GOES TO JDAP

 

Woolstores

The controversial development plans for the Woolstores shopping centre site come before Fremantle Council on Wednesday, before they go to the WA Joint Development Assessment Panel a week later. JDAP is the decision making authority so it will only take Fremantle Council’s recommendation of rejection or approval into account.

The Officer’s Recommendation to Council is to reject the building because the request for two additional discretionary storeys can’t be accepted as the building does not have the required exceptional architectural design standards.

This is only part of the initial application as the other high rise tower at the east end of the development has been scratched, taking out apartments for aged care and student accommodation, only leaving the eleven-storey hotel component and  four-storey car park

It is a real shame that this $ 80 million development has become such a battle because Fremantle needs a new substantial hotel and get rid of the ugly building that is there now.

I am not sure why Silverleaf Investments does not either reduce the building height or create a truly magnificent building in that location just opposite the railway station.

Fremantle Council and the Fremantle community would love to see an iconic new modern building replace the Woolstores boredom, but it needs to be of truly exceptional high standards, and this proposal unfortunately is not.

Roel Loopers

HOW TO GET MORE SOCIAL HOUSING?

 

 

Winter, wet weather and cold nights are not far away and make me worry about the many homeless people we have.

There are around 13,000 homeless people in WA and 105,250 in Australia and the main reasons for homelessness are poverty, unemployment, lack of affordable housing and poor mental or physical health.

The waiting list to rent a Homeswest place is three years, so why do governments not legislate for more affordable and social housing I wonder.

Maybe the City of Fremantle could add affordable housing as an incentive to receive extra height for new development in some appropriate pockets of our city. What about allowing for a discretionary extra height of one storey if the developer agrees to make half of the floor space of that extra storey available for affordable and social housing?

The floor space for affordable/social housing is allowed to be spread within the building and does not have to be on the top floor that will create additional income through penthouse apartments.

I believe Fremantle Council should seriously consider this as an option to entice developers to embrace social housing.

Roel Loopers

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HOTEL FOR FREO’S CONVICT VILLAGE

 

H 1

H 2

H 3

 

The Planning Committee of Fremantle Council last night recommended for approval by the WA JDAP the development of a five-storey hotel, restaurant, tavern and shops at the heritage listed Henderson Street Police and Justice complex and Warders Cottages by Fremantle’s Silverleaf Investments.

The Fremantle Society was concerned that five storeys on the site did not fit in with the City’s own criteria, but planning staff and Councillors had a different opinion.

It was agreed that further work needed to be done on dealing with the noise of the future live music venue of the Drillhall, but the overall concept was welcomed by the elected members and officers.

Mayor Brad Pettitt said it was a good outcome and Councillor Dave Hume said it was a really good outcome and good interpretation of the historic site, and the access way through the development from Henderson to Parry streets was excellent.

Councillor Adin Lang said he had given it a lot of consideration and while the sightlines might impact somewhat the development showcases what is inside the old buildings. We are lucky we don’t have the site empty for ten years as was the case with the Warders Cottages, Lang said.

Councillor Ingrid Waltham said it was a fantastic adaptive re-use of the convict precinct and a good outcome.

The City’s heritage architect Alan Kelsall said the additional fifth storey allows the developers to have a minimal impact on the heritage buildings. “The benefit on the heritage buildings out weights the impact of the higher building.”

The deciding authority for the $10 million development is the state’s Joint Development Assessment Panel.

Roel Loopers

BOUTIQUE ACCOMMODATION AT THE FREO NATIONAL

Posted in accommodation, city of fremantle, hospitality, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on November 22, 2017

 

National

 

The historic Fremantle National Hotel will become a real hotel next year with the addition of twelve boutique hotel rooms.

Owner Karl Buller told me yesterday they will also develop a rooftop bar and wedding function centre, so these are very welcome additions to the Freo CBD.

Construction work is estimated to take six months, so it should all be up and running by mid next year. Stay tuned!

Roel Loopers

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HOTELS NEED TO ADAPT TO TOURIST NEEDS

Posted in accommodation, city of fremantle, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on August 21, 2017

 

The $ 2 million emergency campaign announced by Tourism Minister Paul Papalia to get more people using Perth hotels is not dealing with the changing demands for tourist accommodation.

The minister wants us to invite friends and family over, but it is not just lower visitors’ numbers that are to blame for the many empty hotel rooms.

Hotel rooms are expensive and not very family friendly, hence the success of Bed&Breakfast accommodation and AirBB.

In Fremantle one can get a 2-3 bedroom house with garden for as low as $ 170 a night. For a family with children that is much better and cheaper than hotel rooms.

People can cook in a B&B and don’t need to go out and buy three meals a day, and the kids can play in the garden.

Many B&B also allow dogs and that is very popular.

What hotel operators need to do is change with the times and offer more serviced apartments, where people can cook their own meals, as the new Fremantle Quest Hotel has.

What is wrong with hotels having some floors with rooms and suites, and other floors with serviced apartments with cooking facilities?

Having a whinge is not the solution, but changing with modern tourist demands is.

Roel Loopers

 

HOMELESSNES A VERY REAL PROBLEM

Posted in accommodation, city of fremantle, homelessness, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on August 4, 2017

 

An article in today’s West Australian by Ian Carter, the CEO of Anglicare WA, should be reminder to us all that we need to do more for homeless people. It is a blight on society that in a rich country like Australia thousands of people have to live on the streets.

Ian Carter writes that only one per cent of rental properties in the Perth area are affordable to people on Newstart or on a pension. That is ridiculously low and not acceptable.

Affordable rent is considered to be no more than 30 per cent of income, hence the latest Census shows we have 9592 homeless people and another 7070 are at risk of becoming homeless, as they live in caravan parks and overcrowded accommodation.

The main reasons for becoming homeless, according to Anglicare, are domestic violence, sexual abuse, mental health, financial troubles, and substance use.

The Anglicare CEO writes in the West Australian that social housing should be near transport nodes and accessible to human services and government resources.

It is important not to see homeless people as an unsightly sight on our streets, but as people who deserve and require our compassion and support. I have no doubt we could do a whole lot better if we really tried.

 

Roel Loopers

 

AUSTRALIA HOTEL IN FULL GLORY

Posted in accommodation, architecture, city of fremantle, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on June 21, 2017

Australia Hotel

 

Nice to see the Fremantle Hotel Australia backpackers all painted again after it took years of dispute with the heritage department on what the right process was for the street level facade.

It’s looking good and is a much nicer sight now for cruiseship passengers when they arrive in Fremantle Port.

Roel Loopers

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POSITIVE FIGURES FOR FREMANTLE

Posted in accommodation, city of fremantle, local government, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on June 13, 2017

Some interesting statistics in the agenda of this Wednesday’s City of Fremantle FPOL Committee, so here is a summary of the high-level KPIs. The full report is in the FPOL agenda for June that is on the CoF website.

• 58% of customers said that ‘compared to two to three years ago’, they hear either ‘much more about Fremantle’ or ‘more about Fremantle’.
• 58% of customers said that ‘compared to two to three years ago’, they think Fremantle is either ‘much more appealing’ or ‘more appealing’.

• 87% of customers said they were ‘definitely likely’ or ‘very likely’ to recommend Fremantle as a place to go. This is an increase from 71% in 2013.
(Fremantle based and non-Fremantle based customer responses were almost identical)

• Tourism nights (stays) in Fremantle increased by 45% in 2015/16 (1 930 883) compared to the average of the previous seven years (1 332 782), according to Tourism Research Australia (TRA) who conduct research on behalf of the ABS.

• Domestic (intrastate) day trips increased by 69% in 2015/16 (959 286) compared to the average of the previous seven years (565 507), according to (TRA).

• Fremantle Story website usage has increased to 45 000 unique users per month.
• Fremantle Story social media following has increased to 60 000.
• Fremantle Story e-newsletter is distributed to over 10 000 people each edition.

• In October 2015, Fremantle was selected as a 2016 top ten city in the Lonely Planet Best in Travel publication (worldwide). Media coverage reached an estimated 1.2 billion people worldwide.

• In 2014/15, the City’s efforts at promoting Fremantle as a world class visitor destination was recognised with the national gold medal in the ‘Local Government Award for tourism’ category, awarded by Tourism Council of Australia.

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