Former Canberra Office Building Redeveloped into Hotel


Image: (Left to right) Mantra Group CEO Bob East; Australian Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment Steven Ciobo MP; ACT Attorney-General Gordon Ramsay MLA; and HTI Group Directors Adam Howarth and Jon Tanchevski.

An old office tower at 219 Northbourne Avenue in Canberra’s inner city suburb of Turner officially reopened as a new 176-room Mantra MacArthur Hotel.

Operated by Mantra Group and owned by Canberra developer HTI Group, the hotel was revamped to meet the growing demand for hotel capacity in the nation’s capital.

Mantra Group chief executive Bob East said the property provides a much-needed new hotel offering to support the growth of international and domestic tourism in Canberra.

Mantra MacArthur Hotel

“New hotels in key precincts play a critical role in promoting a vibrant visitor economy while meeting the needs of growing visitor numbers to Canberra, attracting first-time and returning domestic and international travellers,” East said.

Designed by AMC Architecture, the hotel features 136 hotel rooms and 40 suites, as well as the new Podilato restaurant and bar serving Mediterranean-style cuisine, a fully equipped gym, conference and meeting spaces, car parking, an internet lounge and 24-hour reception.

The opening of Mantra MacArthur Hotel now sees Mantra Group operating just under 500 rooms across four hotels in Canberra.

HTI Group Director Adam Howarth said feedback on the $19 million retrofit was positive.

“Northbourne Avenue’s regeneration has been largely the product of major knockdown-rebuild projects but, instead of sending the 10-storey building to landfill or concrete recyclers, we’ve transformed it into a full-service hotel in what looks like a brand new building,” Howarth said.

“The former building is barely recognisable and, while the main precast facade elements of the original office building were retained, the remainder was stripped back to a bare shell to allow us to create a modern hotel.”

Mantra MacArthur Hotel anchors Canberra’s new mixed-use Midtown precinct, which will also include residential units, office space and a range of cafes and restaurants.

According to Australian Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment Steven Ciobo, in the year to June 2017 Canberra saw 2.8 million domestic and international visitors and recorded a spend of over $2 billion, according to Tourism Research Australia.

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