Freo's View

FREMANTLE HILTON HOTEL DELAY AGAIN

 

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The construction of the Fremantle Hilton Doubletree hotel on the Point Street carpark site by the SKS Group has been delayed again, with the company telling the City of Fremantle they will now not start the construction of the two-level basement carpark of the hotel before mid next year.

SKS had asked the City less than a year ago to terminate the carpark contract so that they could start building the basement in November this year, but problems with ground water on the site and the very wet winter will again delay the start of construction.

SKS bought the site for $ 11 million from the City of Fremantle in 2012 and planned to build a six-storey mix-use development that would house the 150-rooms four star hotel and the 98 Anchora apartments, as well as retail outlets.

The delays are very frustrating for Fremantle, but while the City of Fremantle has an option in the contract to buy back the site if construction does not start within a reasonable time, SKS basically got the City by the balls, because Fremantle Council does not want the property back and it can’t afford to pay back the $ 11 million either, so that leaves our city in limbo. Waiting seven years for the start of construction is unacceptable SKS!

The good news is that many other developers do not engage in procrastination and delays and that there are many new developments in Fremantle, and the other good news is that there will be more parking over the Christmas period and the first half of next year.

Roel Loopers

HOUGOUMONT HOTEL TO GET SKY BAR AND RESTAURANT

Posted in accommodation, bar, city of fremantle, food, hospitality, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on November 9, 2018

 

Hougoumont 2

Hougoumont 1

The Planning Committee of Fremantle Council unanimously approved on Wednesday the temporary erection of two sea containers on the Hougoumont Hotel in Bannister Street, which will create a sky restaurant and bar.

The restaurant will have 98 seats, of which 24 will be alfresco.

The roof top addition is for only five years until the Hougoumont starts on Stage Two of the development with additional rooms.

Roel Loopers

HOUGOUMONT WANT ROOF TOP BAR ADDITION

Posted in accommodation, bar, city of fremantle, development, heritage, hospitality, hotel, Uncategorized by freoview on November 3, 2018

 

The owners of the Hougoumont Hotel in Bannister Street are seeking temporary approval  for two storey additions to the hotel, to be used for food and beverage facilities for the Hotel onsite.

The proposal involves the installation of two sea containers and recladding to create a ‘pop up’ restaurant/bar on the subject site.

Hours of operation are to be consistent with the existing Hotel Accommodation which are Monday – Saturday 6am – 12am and Sunday – 10am – 12 am.

The dining area has been designed to cater for a maximum of 98 seats (74 internal and 24 external) persons; 15-18 full time staff members will operate from the entire premises at any one time (including accommodation, food and beverage components of business);

No live music is to be performed, with only background music to be played.

The business is envisaged to operate for a period of 5 years until the second stage of the Hougoumont Hotel development is to be carried out .

Opinion: I am not at all certain that two sea containers on top are a very good look in the West End heritage area, and while the proposal is for a temporary five-year use only, there is no guarantee that the applicants won’t apply to make it permanent after that.

The Planning Committee of Fremantle Council will debate the matter on Wednesday.

Roel Loopers

 

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GREAT FREO BOUTIQUE HOTEL

Posted in accommodation, architecture, art, bar, city of fremantle, food, history, hospitality, hotel, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on October 13, 2018

 

 

National Hotel owner Karl Bullers gave me a quick preview of the new rooftop bar and twelve boutique hotel rooms and I left very impressed.

The rooftop bar will no doubt become one of Fremantle’s favourites, with sweeping views over the port, the historic West End and all over the city. The weather was very dull yesterday, so my photos unfortunately don’t do justice to the magnificence of it.

The hotel rooms are all individually styled with handmade furniture by Clint of Port Jarrah, which is just down the road from the hotel in High Street.

The rooms are really cosy and homely, some have views to the port, others over the city. The TVs are internet connected, there are bath tubs in some and twin showers in others, so recommend them to visitors who want something special smack bang in the middle of our beautiful city.

Noise insulation and double glazed windows are all there to ensure absolute comfort for hotel guests.

There are very good paintings along the corridors by local artists, which are for sale, and the National Hotel does not charge commission so is supporting our local creatives

The rooftop bar will officially open on Melbourne Cup Day but Karl Bullers told me that if the weather is fine next weekend he will give it a soft opening to see how it all goes.

It is a great new addition to Fremantle by an owner who has clearly got faith in Freo’s future.

Roel Loopers

This post is a community service and not an advertorial. I do not accept advertising, payment or gifts for my blog posts.

 

TWIGGY BUYS FREO’S ORIENT HOTEL

Posted in accommodation, city of fremantle, heritage, hospitality, hotel, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on September 16, 2018

 

Orient

 

Andrew-Twiggy Forrest’s Minderoo Group has purchased the historic Fremantle Orient Hotel in the West End of the port city.

This can be seen as a show of confidence in Freo’s future, so it will be interesting to see what they plan to do with the heritage listed building.

Will the backpackers stay or will the company develop the building into a boutique hotel?

Roel Loopers

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THE GREATER FREMANTLE ACTION PLAN

 

chamber function

 

Future Freo chairman Adrian Fini launched the Greater Fremantle Action Plan by the Fremantle Chamber of Commerce in the Australia II gallery of the Maritime Museum on Thursday evening, in front of Minister Simone McGurk, Mayor Brad Pettitt and several councillors and CoF staff, as well as representatives from Notre Dame University, Fremantle Port, Silverleaf Investments and business leaders.

The 28-page Action Plan is well worth reading and I assume the Chamber will put it on line, as it is too substantial to address every item in it here on the blog.

FCOC chair Ivan Dzeba said that Fremantle is already a great place but it can be better, while Adrian Fini said that we do need change and will fall apart if we don’t move forward.

We need to ask ourselves what is Fremantle’s strength and cultural identity, and we have great opportunities which need great leadership, but growth in technology will take shoppers away, but Fremantle has unique offerings that other shopping precincts do not have.

There is a deep journey ahead that demand teamwork with council, businesses and the community working together, Fini said.

The Greater Fremantle Action Plan records Freo’s strengths as having:

  • Dynamic economy particularly in transport and related industries, the arts and receational services, accommodation, food and health care
  • A unique profile consisting of heritage strength and character
  • Fremantle Port remains Fremantle’s most important industry
  • Fremantle has a unique combination of the knowledge economy and creative industries
  • Health services and related sectors continue to play an important role despite the downsizing of Fremantle Hospital
  • Fremantle has a global reputation as a tourist destination

 

So what are the plans for action?

 

Create the Conditions

  • Business attraction plan
  • Destination marketing campaign
  • Develop financial incentives
  • Policy and regulation review
  • Complete structure plan
  • Develop infrastructure to support a cultural plan

Connecting People, Places & Markets

  • Planning for affordable housing
  • Improvements to urban realm in commercial areas
  • Improvements to public transport
  • Sophisticated city centre parking plan
  • Connected cycle path network
  • Improvements to regional connections
  • Improvements to visitor booths and wayfinding
  • Improvements to pedestrian access

Promoting our Place

  • Broader and more unified approach to marketing
  • Develop relevant Fremantle ‘apps’
  • Unique brand development
  • Expand toursim accommodation
  • Explore new tourism opportunities
  • Grow conference/events industry

 

Roel Loopers

 

 

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FREMANTLE ESPLANADE HOTEL FOR SALE

Posted in accommodation, city of fremantle, esplanade, hospitality, hotel, property, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on August 2, 2018

 

Fremantle’s iconic Esplanade Hotel is for sale! The historic hotel which opened in 1897 is on the market and is expected to attract offers of around $ 110 million.

The  300 room hotel was sold by long-time owner Marylyn New only six years ago in 2012 for just $ 90 million.

The Esplanade Hotel  has been refurbished and restored and is receiving most of its revenue from tourist accommodation and conferences.

It is being sold with a 3043sqm site opposite the hotel at 7 Essex Street, that has 172 parking bays, and a 78sqm leased retail tenancy and a 314sqm office.

I am not sure if Marine House, opposite the hotel, has been sold yet. It was put on the market about half a year ago.

CBRE’s Aaron Desange, Ryan McGinnity and Chloe Mason have been appointed to sell the hotel, so if you got a hundred million dollars under the bed, contact them.

 

Roel Loopers

THE WEST AUSTRALIAN ON FREO’S FUTURE

 

The West Australian newspaper published a feature article by Ken Acott today about Fremantle’s future with the headline Freo ripe for new investment to retain its edge.

The article is based on analysis by PCW City Pulse and features the opinion of Nadia van Dommelen, who is a partner in that firm, and also Freo Mayor Brad Pettit.

A lot of what van Dommelen says is not new and she puts a lot of hope in a new waterfront development along Victoria Quay and the move of the container port to Kwinana, so that is still far too far away to be realised.

But Nadia van Dommelen rightly states that Fremantle needs to stop comparing itself with other cities and be proud of the special character and gritty uniqueness of the old port city.

While van Dommelen is excited about eventual waterfront development she believes that the working port, sheds and railway are all part of Fremantle’s charm, and any future development needs to be authentic. She says there is now major opportunity for transformative investment in Fremantle, and that is already happening

I believe Fremantle’s immediate future needs intensive city planning that deals with all the current and imminent development, and that the City’s Council and planners need to have a strategic plan for creating better and more public realm that connects the new developments in the CBD.

The Heirloom and LIV apartments at Queen Victoria Street will be joined in the next few years by the Little Lane apartments in Adelaide Street, the Hilton Doubletree hotel development and apartments at Point Street and the Adani Hotel on the Woolstores site.

Add to that the development of the Manning building, the huge Kings Square development, plans for a new Fremantle Oval Precinct, a small boutique hotel next to the Fremantle Markets plus a four-storey hotel at the former Court and Police site at Henderson Street, and one can envisage a huge change in the inner city that will require more detailed planning for people movement, parking, safety, and enjoyment.

It is imperative that Fremantle Council is very realistic and very pragmatic about what it needs to do and what can be achieved. This is not the time for pie in the sky ideas but for the elected members to have their feet firmly on the ground.

I hope it’s not a bad omen that the West Australian on-line article about Fremantle’s future features a photo of the Botega cafe that recently closed. ; >)

Roel Loopers

 

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NEW FREMANTLE DIFFERENTIAL RATE FOR B&B

Posted in accommodation, city of fremantle, local government, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on June 15, 2018

 

The City of Fremantle is canvassing home owners about charging a differential rate for their homes that are being used as Bed&Breakfast short stay residential accommodation.

The differential rate proposed by Fremantle Council would see an average rate increase of $ 195.00 per year for those who use their property for tourist accommodation.

If this affects you, contact 9432 9999 for more information or/and go to http://www.fremantle.wa.gov.au/strategicdocuments.

Any comments should be sent to the CEO, City of Fremantle. PO Box 807. Fremantle 6959 by the end of business hours today.

I only received the letter of the City of Fremantle, dated June 8, yesterday June 14, so that gives my property owner no time at all to write to the CEO.

Roel Loopers

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

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