Some of the brightest minds to visit South Australia have a new place to rest their heads with the opening of a boutique hotel at Tonsley Innovation District.
Innovators, entrepreneurs, academics and tourists can now enjoy some of the highest levels of hotel amenity on offer in Adelaide’s south, just moments’ walk from Tonsley’s powerhouse of innovation – the Main Assembly Building (MAB).
The 88-room hotel, operated by La Loft, offers 15 one-bedroom apartments and 73 studio suites, cementing the District as a true mixed-use precinct that caters for a bourgeoning number of national and international visitors.
The hotel’s one-bedroom apartments will accommodate extended stays – each featuring a private balcony, self-catering kitchenettes and washer/dryer facilities – while the studios will deliver a luxury experience with premium amenities and bespoke bedding manufactured locally through Elite Bedding at Edwardstown.
The six-storey, 1500m2 hotel – with uninterrupted views of the city to the north and the sea to the west – also boasts a ground floor bar and dining area, and function and event spaces on its mezzanine level. It is expected to be running at capacity by the end of January.
Housing and Urban Development Minister Nick Champion said the hotel was one of several premium value-adds strategically unlocked by Renewal SA, in conjunction with private development partners, to enhance Tonsley as a destination.
“Providing visiting professionals and tertiary students with a central place to stay will help attract top talent to our state and fills a key gap in the accommodation market around Tonsley,” Minister Champion said.
"Having a brand-new bespoke hotel open on site not only connects guests to the District’s world-class businesses, it also opens up South Australia’s southern regions for travellers to explore while securing more local jobs. The Tonsley District is fast becoming the top of everyone’s wish list for places to work – and stay."
Minister for Housing and Urban Development, Nick Champion
In recent months two major commercial developments have been secured at Tonsley; A $47million, 5000m2 retail and commercial hub on the western side of the MAB, and next door to that, Mitsubishi’s old Boiler House is being converted into a multi-million-dollar microbrewery by craft beer makers Little Bang.
La Loft General Manager Simon O’Callaghan said he expected strong occupancy rates for both short- and longer-term stays from visitors who are currently having to commute to the District from other hotels across Adelaide to collaborate with Tonsley businesses.
“There is a great appetite to stay within the District. We first visited the innovation precinct in 2017 and we could really see the vision and the potential there and we doubled the footprint of the hotel,” Mr O’Callaghan said.
“The Marion area is still underserviced, and it’s so well positioned as a gateway to McLaren Vale and to the southern suburbs, and the Fleurieu Peninsula as a whole.”
Ultimately, Mr O’Callaghan says it’s about delivering an exceptional hospitality experience to every hotel guest.
“We are in the business of a good night’s sleep,” he said. “The hotel has a huge amount of flexibility. We have 10 different room configurations including five disability access suites, with interconnecting rooms for carers to provide space and dignity. We can also connect several one-bedroom apartments with neighbouring studio rooms making them genuine two-bed, two-bathroom apartments.
"When we’re at capacity, we will offer breakfast, lunch, dinner and room service. And our function spaces are modular and fully equipped audio-visually for any high-level meeting or event. This is particularly useful for businesses needing private meeting rooms for recruitment purposes."
La Loft General Manager, Simon O’Callaghan
Chocolate-making and wine-tasting events will also be held for guests in the coming months, as the hotel showcases the best of South Australian food and wine.
Fuelled by green energy, La Loft is the first commercial property to be connected to the blended hydrogen gas network at Tonsley’s Hydrogen Park SA. It also runs off the CleanPeak Energy network powered by solar panels on the MAB roof.
Renewal SA’s Tonsley Project Director Vince Rigter said the creation of ancillary services such as the hotel was yet another attractor to rapidly growing Tonsley, which now employees around 2000 workers, welcomes 8500 students annually and has a residential population of 500 people.
“The La Loft Hotel coming online brings a whole new layer of sophistication and demand to Tonsley Innovation District that will help elevate its appeal on the world stage,” Mr Rigter said.
“Last year, Tonsley became one of just 22 innovation districts globally to form an elite cluster of the most progressive innovation hubs in the world, and more and more we are fielding requests from leading businesspeople, entrepreneurs and foreign dignitaries and their attaches to visit the District.
“Tonsley businesses will be thrilled the hotel is now up and running because it means their clients will only have a two-minute walk to the research labs and collaboration spaces on site.”
The four-and-a-half-star hotel, designed by South Australian firm Intro and constructed by Techne Build, is expected to employ 40 staff at full capacity.
La Loft Hotel is located on the high-profile corner of Tonsley Boulevard and MAB Circuit, Tonsley.
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