Perth is typically thought of as an isolated mining city, but it is beginning to shed its image. In the past five years it has become more cosmopolitan, thanks in part to the development of central arts district Northbridge, which has introduced a number of hip bars and restaurants to the city that could rival those in Melbourne.
Given Perth's local wealth and growing sophistication, it is surprising it has taken such a long time for a luxurious hotel to spring up on the Swan River. Enter Como The Treasury. With 48 rooms, a spa and a 20-metre pool overlooking the city, the hotel is dripping with understated elegance. Opened by Prince Charles on his state visit last November, it is part of a A$110m (£54m) redevelopment of the city's state buildings.
As its name suggests, the hotel is housed in the 140-year-old former treasury, which has been sensitively brought back to life by Perth-born architect Kerry Hill. Huge re-installed dormer windows flood the bedrooms with daylight, and the rooftop has been refitted with a similar copper trimming. While the hotel looks like a Neoclassical palace on the outside, inside it has a stripped back, contemporary feel with natural colours used throughout.
Good food is never far away in Australia, but at Como it is so near you can roll out of your super-sized bed to try seven restaurants in the interconnected State Buildings (or enjoy a room-service menu from three of them). At the hotel's Australian-meets-French bistro Post, the breakfast features dishes such as hot smoked salmon on courgette brioche, and French toast with poached fruit, malted fudge and candied walnuts. The fine-dining rooftop restaurant, Wildflower, offers more complex dishes for lunch and dinner, made from some of the best, locally sourced produce.
Special Shambhala raw foods (a brand created by Como founder Christina Ong) are also available for those wishing to detox (though let's face it, why would you when in Australia?). Shambhala, which means peace and serenity in Sanskrit, also extends to the hotel's spa, where you can enjoy massages, body wraps and reflexology.
The hotel, located in Perth's central business district, is 20 minutes' drive from the airport. Arts hub Northbridge – home to Western Australia's state art gallery, public library and museum – is a 15-minute walk away.
Como overlooks the Supreme Court Gardens and Langley Park, but for those wanting to check out Perth's landmark botanical garden, Kings Park is a 25-minute walk uphill. Cottesloe, the city's most popular beach, is a 25-minute drive away, or 35 minutes by train, door to door.
Not many hotels can boast en-suite bathrooms that are the same size as their bedrooms. Even the smallest rooms are 50sq metres. The initial surprise at the room's scale is matched only by the super-king beds.
From said enormous bed, guests can regulate the automated blackout blinds, curtains and various types of mood lighting, which are not quite as effortless to control as they should be. At least playing music from your phone in the multimedia hub through the large Samsung television is easier than anticipated. And you can dance around with a bottle of craft beer from the complimentary minibar.
The bedroom's muted colour palette continues in the more luxurious bathroom, where you can soak in a deep, free-standing travertine bathtub, or indulge in a rain-effect walk-in shower; remember to heat the stone floor before getting out. And twin basins allow couples enough room to spread out their complimentary Shambhala toiletries.
Como The Treasury, 1 Cathedral Avenue, Perth, Western Australia (00 61 8 6168 7888; comohotels.com/thetreasury)
Double rooms start at A$595 (£286), including breakfast and complementary minibar.
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