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AN ACCOR HOTELS PROMOTION
Hines Property Managing
Director, James Hines
ince developing Mantra on Hindmarsh Square, Hines Property
has been at the forefront of the evolution of Adelaide’s hotel
sector over the past decade with the 2010 launch of the city’s
first purpose built internationally-branded upscale hotel since
the 1980s, which was recently rebranded from Crowne Plaza Adelaide to
Pullman Adelaide. They followed that with the construction of the pace-
setting 311 room ibis Adelaide, which revolutionised the city’s economy
market. Its impact was acknowledged by the hotel twice winning the HM
Award for ‘Best Economy Hotel in Australia’.
James, Pullman Adelaide on Hindmarsh Square is already
well established as one of Adelaide’s most successful upscale
hotels, but you have plans to upgrade the hotel even further –
what are your refurbishment plans?
We developed the hotel through the GFC and it opened as Crowne Plaza
Adelaide in 2010, and the hotel was rebranded to the 5-star Pullman
Brand under AccorHotels’ management in October 2017. The rebrand
and repositioning has allowed us an exciting opportunity to reconsider all
facets of the property.
On brand change we immediately committed to capital expenditure
including new beds and smart Ultra HD guest room TVs, a completely
new AV set up in our conference spaces and a whole of hotel IT upgrade.
We are now underway with a whole of hotel refurbishment, having
appointed Global design firm Woods Bagot as the lead design consultant.
Woods Bagot originated from Adelaide but have the head of their
hospitality division based in New York. We felt their hotel experience
combined with their local knowledge and Adelaide origins was a perfect
fit to assist us to reposition the property.
The first area of the hotel to be enhanced will be the creation of an
Executive Lounge. The hotel never previously had an executive lounge as
a 4-star Crowne Plaza, but this is a hallmark of the 5-star Pullman brand.
The Executive Lounge will commence construction shortly and will
reflect and celebrate the park frontage location we have on Hindmarsh
Square. The lounge design has been inspired by the detailed architectural
and cultural elements within the City of Adelaide.
We plan on ‘re-imagining’ all areas of the hotel including the creation
of a very different food and beverage experience. It won’t be a standard
No other hotel in Adelaide can replicate the park frontage location
that Pullman Adelaide enjoys on Hindmarsh Square, and now that
we have a global 5-star brand on the property it will undoubtedly be
regarded as Adelaide’s premier luxur y hotel. It’s really exciting to get the
opportunity to build on the attributes of this hotel and exciting to be
Hines Property has largely been involved in upscale
property development, so building the economy ibis
Adelaide was a slight change in strategy – what attracted
you to the project?
I had experienced firsthand the price sensitive nature of both corporate
and leisure travellers and I was attracted to the economy hotel model
whereby you could provide a very competitive price point for the customer.
This is achieved by removing the non-essential services of traditional
hotels that add very little to the guest experience. We undertook a lot of
research globally looking at branded and unbranded limited ser vice hotel
product to really hone our idea of what the product needed to be and how
it would overcome removing some services but provide a premium guest
environment without the stigma of an economy hotel.
AccorHotels worked proactively with us, and their Ibis brand was a
perfect fit. We challenged everything, from room layout to level of finish.
We upgraded the public spaces which in my view are better than many
4-star hotels in Adelaide. We used 5-star beds in every room and made
sure we have the best showers. Simple hotel attributes that are often
overlooked. We over specified in some areas, those which we determined
would enhance the guest experience and ensure guest loyalty. The concept
worked and Ibis Adelaide has been a very successful property and the first
of a new wave of Ibis hotels in Australia and globally.
Winning two HM Awards in just three years is a serious
acknowledgement of what the Ibis has brought to Adelaide’s
hotel scene – you must be very proud of its contribution?
Winning this award once, yet alone twice, has been fantastic recognition
for the entire team involved with this hotel, from its development
through to operations. One of the great things about this award is that it
has prompted people to try the hotel that otherwise would have gone for
a mid-market property. n
Hines Property is a leading hotel and property
developer in South Australia, with an enviable record
of delivering cutting edge projects for the Adelaide
market. To find out more about the company and
key projects in the group, HM spoke to Hines
Property Managing Director, JAMES HINES.
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