Confidence in Newcastle’s future tourism and employment growth has led Doma to increase the size of the Little National Hotel planned for 42 Honeysuckle Drive and add an office building to designs for the site.
“Doma has a long-term commitment to Newcastle, reflected by the fact we have seven projects either underway or completed to date,” Doma Managing Director, Jure Domazet said. “We believe an opportunity exists to help draw more visitors and jobs to the region.
“The outlook for local tourism and the economy are positive and it is important to us to ensure our plans move with the times to provide the infrastructure that will best position the city for the future.”
Under new designs, which will shortly be lodged for approval, the site at 42 Honeysuckle Drive will become a mixed-use vertical precinct containing a 181 room Little National Hotel and a boutique office block of 4,700 sqm.
“The number of rooms in the Little National Hotel have increased by 29,” Mr Domazet said. “Plans for the site previously included 60 serviced apartments, but we believe the local tourism market will be better served through our addition of affordable, business/leisure hotel rooms.”
The new office building on the eastern side of the site will enjoy the facilities and amenity provided by the Little National Hotel, including a co-working lounge and library area, gym and access to the north-facing upper terrace with rooftop bar.
According to Mr Domazet, “This is part of a global move where hotels start offering services that will also be enjoyed by office occupiers. The public spaces of hotels have always been used as “third spaces” by businesses and linking our hotel and office buildings optimises this relationship. There is a natural blurring of hotel and office spaces that will see hotels providing more of the co-working spaces currently being developed around the world”.
The office floors being created will have efficient and flexible floorplates with great outlook and natural daylight. Doma are undertaking studies on building it out of sustainable timber, with a commitment to a 5 Star Greenstar and a 5 Star NABERS Energy rating.
“Following the recent sale of 18 Honeysuckle Drive, Doma is pleased to be replacing this commercial investment in the city and asset in its Newcastle portfolio,” Mr Domazet explained. “The 6 Stewart Street office building, largely pre-committed by the NSW State Government, currently under construction will be complemented by this new office building which will target a different style of tenant.”
Whilst acknowledging the likelihood of delay as a result of the new Development Application, Doma are comfortable the revised timeframes will optimise development given that their key construction partner Bloc’s construction resources are currently working very hard on Lume. The Store site is well under way and building works at Huntington are about to commence.