Twenty-six years after HM Prison Pentridge closed its doors, the property reopened on Monday, May 1, this time as a 106-room hotel named after its origins, Adina Apartment Hotel Pentridge. Located in the suburb Coburg, halfway between the CBD and airport, the hotel has studios, one-bed and two-bed apartments, as well as a restaurant, wine bar, events venue, and wellness retreat.
The site is one of the largest bluestone restoration projects ever undertaken in Australia and one of just 40 prison hotels converted, reports travel publication Karry On. The prison’s former chapel with high lead-light windows has been transformed into the Adina’s function centre. The designers of the project, Cox Architecture, are known for their work on delicate heritage projects, including the Hepburn Bathhouse and Spa redevelopment near Daylesford in Victoria.
A highlight of the redevelopment is The Interlude, the world’s first wellness retreat in a converted prison, which is yet to open. The retreat is home to an additional 19 rooms, all suites, fitted with Hunter Lab hair and skincare and complimentary minibars.
The Interlude is also home to a Relaxation Pool and Reflection Garden, which hotel guests in the Adina are also welcome to use. In keeping with the retreat feel, the hotel’s restaurant North & Common serves local, fresh produce and meat, the likes of spatchcock, spanner crab risoni, and burrata with charred green fig.
The hotel’s other venue, Olivine Wine Bar, is nestled in a citadel-like space, built of hand-carved stone and behind heavy timber doors. Chef Thomas Woods is at the helm of both venues, as well as one of Australia’s most promising young sommeliers, Liinaa Berry.
Pentridge Prison was opened around 1864, when it become the largest prison complex in Victoria in the 19th century. The prison housed Chopper Read, Ned Kelly, and the gangster Suiqzzy Taylor before closing in 1996. Today, the precinct, developed by the Shayher Group, in addition to the Adina, also includes a BrewDog venue and Palace Cinema. The Adina hotel is housed in what was formerly called ‘Division B’ of the prison.
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