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The Lyall style – quiet luxury

A hospitality icon in downtown South Yarra has been given an extensive renovation and is now the place to stay, drink and dine for those with an appetite for quiet luxury.

The Lyall style – quiet luxury

As an accommodation landmark in chic South Yarra, Melbourne, The Lyall has drawn crowds to stay, eat and drink for decades. However, with an extensive and sophisticated renovation, this boutique hotel becomes a world’s best hospitality destination.

Designer for the transformation of The Lyall is DKO, who has (as it always does), created an exemplary interior for a stellar local, interstate and international clientele. Lead on the project, Michael Drescher, Interior Design Director, DKO and a team, comprising Lidia Brugnaro and Jacob Olsen, have conceived an exemplary design that has re-invigorated The Lyall making it the place to stay when luxury is the first requirement on the travel list.

DKO designs The Lyall

The lobby is a refined space where those checking in can sit and relax fireside and enjoy a welcome drink. Here an inlaid timber chevron patterned floor and hand-tufted rugs present a relaxed aesthetic for the start of a guest’s hotel journey.

Drescher says, “This hotel was always a place where all the locals used to come and hang out and it was a meeting spot for the local community as well as visitors and tourists. It was always special and so we just wanted to replicate that feeling with this renovation, we wanted to open it up and let it breathe a little bit. So that when you walk in, you feel like you’re going into someone’s home and you’re being invited. We didn’t want guests to be rushed at reception, everything is actually at eye level and you’re not going to a traditional hotel reception counter. It’s something a little bit more intimate. Your bags get taken when you walk in, and it’s like going into someone’s living room.”

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DKO designs The Lyall

Aside reception is the bar and bistro, delineated by black and white checked marble floor and views of curated landscape outside glazed windows. In summer, guests are encouraged to enjoy the outside seating for a drink or a meal and relax as they watch the passing foot traffic.

There are 49 newly refurbished rooms and two very large residential suites. Each room offers a bathroom and substantial robe, along with an ottoman and chaise and all the anticipated five-star amenities. Majority of the rooms also offer a balcony facing onto a treelined street and the scene conjures images of Parisian hotels where the atmosphere is urbane and polished yet comfortable.

DKO designs The Lyall

The two vast residential suites, the Maple and Domain Suites, are situated at the rear of the building and offer expansive lounge rooms, generous bathrooms with free-standing baths, spacious walk-in robes and Juliet balconies. The Maple suite overlooks a Paul Bangay designed courtyard and this is the place to be for a very special occasion.

“You can stay here for a long time. So, when you go into the rooms, it’s somewhere you can unpack, leave everything at the front part of the guest suite and then you can relax. People who stay here, stay for some time which I think makes The Lyall feel different than other hotels.” reflects Drescher.

DKO designs The Lyall

While The Lyall exudes the air of a European hotel of distinction it also embraces contemporary Australian design and showcases it at its best. The colour palette is minimal, black, white with hues of brown, but the addition of pale blues and greens adds texture and warmth to the interior.

Drescher comments, “I think in my career, it’s probably one of the hotels I’m most proud of because I think it means so much to everyone living in the street or living in the area. There’s so much history associated with The Lyall and I think that’s a challenge as a designer, to make sure that you can keep that history alive and keep going into the future. We’re all very proud that everyone who walks into The Lyall feels something good and I think that’s what we always wanted.”

The Lyall whispers quiet luxury and its clientele understand just how precious this is – wherever one may stay in the world. DKO has rejuvenated this hospitality venue and achieved a stunning result. The Lyall lives again as the queen of boutique hotels in Melbourne and she is set for a long and very auspicious reign.


The Lyall

DKO designs The Lyall
DKO designs The Lyall
DKO designs The Lyall

Next up: Stylish accommodation refurbishment in the financial heart of Sydney

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