26 Nov 23

Woods Bagot localises design for world-first StandardX

Fitzroy, Melbourne will be home to the world’s first StandardX – a new derivative of the iconic global Standard hotels, touted as the brand’s “rebellious younger sibling” and featuring “intuitive hospitality without the pretention”.    

With architecture helmed by Woods Bagot, The StandardX, Melbourne features the brand’s signature blend of design and culture, with an imprint that is uniquely contextual to Fitzroy’s light-industrial urban landscape. Made from weathering steel, the building is designed to inherit the gritty, urban texture of the city-fringe suburb in a design that – rather than shiny and pristine – reads like it belongs.

“We wanted the materiality to appear endemic to its local context and speak to the light-industrial heritage of the area,” says Woods Bagot Associate and project architect Robert Rosamilia. “The building is rapidly assuming a distinctly local patina that speaks to Fitzroy’s convergence of industrial heritage and contemporary artistic sensibility. It’s a building that’s entirely of its place.” 

First launched in Hollywood nearly 25 years ago, The Standard continues to be an alluring independent lifestyle hospitality brand with a reputation for defying convention through raised aesthetic stakes and an “un-standard” hospitality service. Like its sister brand, The StandardX, Melbourne, will feature a playful sensibility combined with cutting-edge design and intuitive programming, teeming with a laid-back stamp for the “rough-and-ready” traveller.

“The StandardX, Melbourne is a low-key, less layered concept that reconnects us with our roots,” says Verena Haller, Chief Design Officer of The Standard Hotels. “As always with The Standard, our focus is to blend into the neighborhood with a space that offers timeless familiarity while introducing an entirely fresh experience.

“With each project, our team collaborates closely with local interior design and architectural partners (Hecker Guthrie and Woods Bagot) to ensure the seamless embodiment of our latest brand. This is evident through the exposed concrete, terrazzo flooring and various artisan moments throughout the hotel.”

The eight-storey, 125-key hotel features a rooftop terrace with unparalleled views overlooking the Fitzroy. Bespoke interiors have been curated in collaboration with The Standard’s desgin team and local interiors practice Hecker Guthrie, boasting “soft industrialism, youthful eclecticism with a sophisticated palette of materials”.

Drawing reference from Fitzroy’s industrial past, The StandardX, Melbourne, features over-scaled structural elements like monolithic beams bisecting spaces, while a central column is overhung with a macrame artwork by a local weaver Sarah Smalltown. This industrial texture is expressed throughout the public spaces including retail concept store The Box, all-day Thai diner BANG, the guest-only rooftop, and lobby. 

The built form is designed to resemble the typology of Fitzroy’s prominent corner pubs – solid in nature with a singular materiality and punched windows – that tell the story of Melbourne’s oldest inner-city suburb.

In response to a growing ‘slow travel’ movement, savvy hotel operators have adopted a hyperlocal approach to design to accommodate a lust for more authentic experiences, creating a destination for travellers and locals alike.

The StandardX, Melbourne, responds to a growing demand for hotel accommodation outside of the CBD, with more visitors opting for short-stay experiences in Melbourne’s lively and characterful city-fringe neighbourhoods with access to authentic local amenity.  

Conforming to the New York model of hotel operations, The StandardX offers an intimate floorplan deeply enmeshed in the thrumming heart of the neighbourhood.

“It’s targeting the short-stay, experiential traveller who seeks to immerse themselves in the culture and rhythm of one of Melbourne’s most iconic suburbs,” says Woods Bagot principal and project design leader Pete Miglis.   

The StandardX will open in February 2024.

Booking enquiries at: thestandardxmelbourne@standardhotels.com

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Isla Sutherland
Content and Communications (Australia & New Zealand)

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