'There's a hotel that's a little bit cheaper, but it's further away from the CBD,' said Peter, as we were perusing various web sites looking for accommodation ahead of my visit to Adelaide for Words to Go and Tasting Australia.
'I don't care about that one,' I said, skimming over the page he was showing me. 'The swimming pool is on the roof and it's not heated,' I replied. 'Besides, look how close the Adina Apartment Hotel Treasury is to the heart of the city. And the pool looks absolutely fabulous,' I added.
Proximity and the pool were key features as far as I was concerned. In all the years Peter and I have been together, this was to be the first trip I was taking on my own. And I wanted to choose the place I would call home during my sojourn. We had very much enjoyed our stay at the Adina Apartment Hotel in Budapest last year, and I was curious to see the fully-restored, heritage-listed, boutique hotel in Adelaide.
According to a media blurb and historical guide to the hotel, provided to me by Ben Smith, the General Manager, the key objective of the restoration was to retain and preserve the heritage features so that every guest can share in and be part of the building's history. To this end, there is a permanent display of artefacts (such as old coins, glassware etc) discovered during the restoration work.
Built in 1839, the building was once the home for offices for the State Treasury and is now one of Adelaide’s most significant historical sites. The foundation stone was laid in 1839 by Governor Lawler, who used the occasion to proclaim that Adelaide would be the site for the South Australian capital.
The courtyard garden was established in 1840 and it, too has history. In the 1800s, the early settlers slept in the courtyard as they queued for land grants - much as the folk of today do when they line up outside the Apple store.
Apparently, the Adelaide Pound, Australia's first gold coin, was minted on site during the Gold Rush in the 1850s. Speaking of which, the population surge of the Gold Rush saw the original building demolished. Over the next 70 years, it was rebuilt into the form of the property we see on the site today.
The building truly does have a fascinating history. From 1876 until 1968, the South Australian Premier’s Cabinet met and conferred in the Cabinet Room - which remains unchanged. During the Depression, demonstrators rallied on site against the exclusion of beef from rations, hence the Beef Riots of the 1930s.
The Treasury’s (somewhat eerie) underground limestone tunnels were said to be once lined with steel tracks, forming a mini railway that transported supplies to miners. And, in the 1960s, the tunnels were used by surveyors and cartographers employed by the Lands Department.
Now completely rejuvenated, the Adina Apartment Hotel Adelaide Treasury boasts 79 well appointed guest rooms, including studio suites, as well as one and two bedroom apartments. The rooms range from modest (but not squishy) to luxuriously spacious - and I love that there are kitchenettes.
Booking over the telephone was a breeze. Hotel staff were professional and courteous, and happy to cater to my needs of a quiet room away from street noise, and a walk in shower (rather than a step-in shower over a bath).
'The most important part of the hotel for myself is the team, and our customer focus service culture. We are dedicated to our guests and anything we can do to help. I truly believe this is paramount to ensuring all of our guests enjoy their time with us. I am proud of the team,' Ben Smith, the GM, explained.
Arriving at my room on a cool Autumn afternoon, I was delighted to see sunlight flooding in through the tall windows, which overlooked the quiet internal courtyard. My studio room was large enough for two and offered a living area with desk and sofa, as well as a small dining table and a good-sized kitchenette. The bathroom was exceptionally spacious and well appointed. The linen was crisp and the bed was deliciously comfortable.
The oasis-like courtyard & the pool...
Having settled in to my room, I changed into my bathers, popped on a plush towelling robe, and made a beeline for the swimming pool and spa, via the courtyard and underground tunnels. The pool temperature was perfect for me, and the size of the pool was ample for lap swimming. Rest assured, I made full use of the facility, and swam twice daily over the three days of my Tasting Australia (food fest) stay.
The Adina Apartment Hotel Adelaide Treasury is centrally located on Victoria Square, at 2 Flinders Street, Adelaide in the CBD - just five minutes from the iconic Central Market. An airport shuttle is available (fees apply). It's cheaper to catch a bus from the airport, but please note that a short walk is involved. I enjoyed my stay and will most definitely visit the hotel again.
Disclaimer: I attended Words to Go 2016, part of Tasting Australia, as a guest of the South Australian Tourism Commission (SATC), however, I made my own way to Adelaide and stayed at the Adina Treasury at my own expense. This is a review, not a sponsored post. Opinions are my own.
Watch this space for my upcoming feature on the Adina Apartment Hotel in Budapest, and articles about Words to Go and Tasting Australia, in Adelaide. Coming soon.
Tell me dear readers and fellow travellers. What's on your list of requirements when booking a hotel? Do you factor in things such as location and whether the property has a swimming pool? Or do you look for a bargain? Do please tell.
Cooking and writing have been a lifelong passion.
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NB: I use Australian standard measuring cups and spoons in my recipes.