Launceston’s next major hotel project looks set to stun, if approved by the City of Launceston council.
A development application for the Gorge Hotel was lodged on Thursday, marking the next step towards making the $50 million vision of JAC Group a reality.
The proposed five-star design features 145 rooms set over nine storeys, including five large penthouse suites on the top floor.
There is also a rooftop cocktail bar overlooking the Tamar River and CBD, with indoor and outdoor seating for up to 80 people.
Managing director Dean Cocker said JAC Group had been working hard since the design concept was decided on 12 months ago.
“The community deserves the best outcome for this last significant development site on the riverfront, within easy walking distance of the CBD and Cataract Gorge,” he said.
“That is why we ran a commissioned design competition last year, paying six architects to each come up with a different design for the Gorge Hotel.
“Each concept was assessed in consultation with feedback from expert planners, landscape architects, cost consultants, international hotel operators and council. Ultimately the design from CBG Architects in Melbourne was the preferred design.
“We have been working with the architect, our planning team and council officers over the past 12 months to ensure that the development application meets the requirements of the Launceston interim planning scheme, and we believe that it does.”
Mr Cocker said the existing TRC Hotel will be retained, with its roof to become a deck in front of the hotel’s function centre offering panoramic views of the Tamar River and Cataract Gorge.
A glass lift and grand staircase will also link the restaurant to Paterson Street, with a multi-storey 176-space car park located under the hotel, with room to expand.
While the lower podium levels of the building are at the 12 metre permitted height, Mr Cocker said the hotel tower was discretionary – rising to 39 metres – and similar to Myer, Telstra and the Silo Hotel.
“If there is any site in Launceston that can justify a 39 metre high building it is this location, given it is on the lowest lying area of the city bounded by hills to the west, Launceston College to the east, and a flood levee to the north,” Mr Cocker said.
“The design sits remarkably well on the site because it is well set back from Paterson Street on the lowest area in the city.”
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