The city’s laid-back tropical vibe is reflected in offbeat ways throughout the 321-room hotel, from tongue-and-groove wall panels reminiscent of old Queenslander homes to oversize diamanté-studded flip-flops.
From an intimate tented camp in the green foothills of Bali to a converted 19th-century Jesuit retreat in Tamil Nadu, our editors and reviewers have roamed the Asia-Pacific region to bring together DestinAsian’s annual collection of the year’s top hotel openings. Read on to discover which new properties stood out from the rest in terms of service, setting, amenities, and a singular sense of style.
It’s been more than a decade since Starwood’s W brand departed Australia with the closure of the W Sydney back in 2005. Brisbane, the steamy capital of Queensland, seems a natural fit for its return. The city’s laid-back tropical vibe is reflected in offbeat ways throughout the 321-room hotel, from tongue-and-groove wall panels reminiscent of old Queenslander homes to oversize diamanté-studded flip-flops, boomerang-shaped coffee tables, and a sunrise mural by indigenous artist Reko Rennie; look up in some of the public spaces, and you’ll even spot a trail of native creepy-crawlies painted on the ceiling.
Curved walls and surfaces nod to the ebb and flow of the Brisbane River, which all rooms and the open-air Wet Bar overlook, and a larger-than-life installation of river reeds snakes beside the lobby staircase as if by the water’s edge. While the restaurant, Three Blue Ducks, comes courtesy of a Sydney/Byron Bay team known for their farm-to-table ethos, the menu still offers a distinct sense of place through dishes such as grilled Moreton Bay bugs (a local species of slipper lobster) and kingfish sashimi with papaya and mango. It doesn’t get much more Queensland than that.
61-7/3556-8888; wbrisbane.com; doubles from US$243.
This article originally appeared in the October/November 2018 print issue of DestinAsian magazine (“The Luxe List 2018: W Brisbane”).