Modern Nostalgia

Comfort, Calamity and Calm, a remedy for Modern times with the re-invention of a 1875 Sorrento seaside icon.

Hotel Continental

HotelsIn Progress


In 1875 George Coppin, a performer, politician and an entrepreneur known as the father of Melbourne theatre, realised his vison to bring his European experiences to Sorrento, a small seaside town on the Mornington Peninsula in Victoria, Australia. Sorrento was a popular holiday resort and Melburnians took the Ozone paddle steamer to Coppin’s new establishment – and the most fashionable place to stay – the Continental Hotel. The Continental promised a continental atmosphere together with fishing, shooting, bowls, tennis, orchestra in season plus a magnificent ballroom. “Everything for a perfect holiday.”

Over time and numbers of alterations the ‘Conti’ (as locals know it), once the pride of the township, is a shadow of its former glory – a pub with the occasional music performances. Woods Bagot is now reinventing this icon.

Project details

With this new venture to restore and expand the current hotel facilities we took this opportunity to re-invent the icon beyond its former glory with both provenance and promise. In the spirit of George Coppin, the new precinct’s design incorporates a Modern-Nostalgia approach which combines the comfort of nostalgia with the spirit of a modern grandeur. The intent is to make European luxury available to local and regional visitors, with an Australian twist . No longer will there need to be a lengthy overseas trip for a continental experience.

The project includes the existing 1875 heritage building with its 1930s addition, plus four new buildings. Hospitality and wellness amenities including hotel suites, day spa, bath house, fine dining, casual dining, ballrooms and a speak easy cabaret will be accommodated in over 20,000 square metres. The Continental will once again host a plethora of pampering opportunities with both comfort, calamity and calm, all a remedy for modern times. Of the new buildings , three are hotel buildings plus a pool club with wellness amenity.

Two formal entrances will define the precinct: a porte cochère for vehicle access directly from Constitution Hill Road and a pedestrian entrance experience on Ocean Beach Road, the township’s retail high street. This prescribed circulation reveals and arrives at the epicentre of the project which is an all day, all seasons, glazed conservatory for hotel guests, members, and the public to converge.

A project of architectural and interior design complexity, the wellness and hospitality venue will be a place for the community to come together and once again, when safe, to celebrate both the important and simple things in life while restoring the value of regional Australian tourism. A Continental destination once again, opening in December 2021.

Sorrento, Australia
Trenerry Property Group
Expected Completion