Credit: Rhiannon Taylor

Nestled between a bustling Chinatown and Parliament House is another glamorous outpost from the Lancemore Group, a collection of boutique accomodation dotted across the country. Named after the laneway it resides on, I admittedly walked past Lancemore Crossley St twice before I spotted its facade. A single boxed sign attached to the exterior. Upon entry to the Melbourne hotel I was met with a neon sign in cursive which reads, “Here’s looking at me, kid.” My frazzled reflection was staring back in the glass, out of breath and sticky after racing a half marathon, with the promise of much needed R+R in just metres away.

It seems that the value of a good first impression was not lost on the Lancemore Group – established in 1986 – when it came to opening its next venture in late 2020. A giant chandelier hangs from the low ceilings of the lobby and leather lounges line the makeshift café. In the distance a fully-stocked bar tempts visitors. “Bringing old school glamour to Melbourne’s CBD,” the website reads. Quirky artwork is found in just about every corner of the hotel and even in the elevator where a haunting video plays on repeat.

Credit: Rhiannon Taylor

When it comes to the 113 rooms of the five-level building, they are a little more pared back. The king rooms – available in a standard, premium or design option – is everything you need from a hotel room. A large comfy bed, desk, television and modest sized bedroom and bathroom. Hunter Lab amenities are a touch of luxury. The junior and one bedroom suite offers more room while what really sets Crossley St apart is a range of terrace suites offering a larger space and a balcony. A rare find for inner city hotels.

Design King Room. Credit: Rhiannon Taylor
Two Bedroom Terrace Suite. Credit: Rhiannon Taylor

As a Sydney-sider myself, grandeur takes form in any rooftop bar, thanks to my own city’s lack thereof. Despite the weather, Melbourne is brimming with open air venues but something feels so special about a private rooftop only open to the hotel’s guests. With sun beds for summer and a fireplace when the city turns icy, the rooftop bar is the perfect way to spend the afternoon or evening. You don’t have to leave your seat with QR codes meaning you can order from your phone with a stiff Gin & Tonic delivered by staff from downstairs. Or when Bodega Underground is open, a restaurant sharing the same building, freshly made Mexican.

Credit: Rhiannon Taylor

Situated in the heart of the Theatre District – the likes of Her Majesty’s, The Princess and The Regent theatres just a short walk away – The Lancemore Crossley St also offers a Theatre Package with special inclusions to gift to a loved one (or yourself) and a Shop & Stay Package for the sartorially inclined. After all, it’s gifting season.

Down an unassuming alleyway deep in the Melbourne CBD, Lancemore Crossley St is both unexpected, and a diamond to emerge from the pandemic ashes. And whether you’re travelling for business or pleasure makes for a relaxed hide away.