Saturday, 13 August 2016

Australian prison hotel to offer nights behind bars

VISITORS to #Australia will soon be able to spend a night behind bars, without the need to get arrested first. Pentridge Prison – built in 1851 and five miles from central Melbourne – is to be converted into an apartment hotel. 

The new hotel comprises several elements, including the opportunity to stay in a converted prison cell. The prison’s former chapel will be transformed into a venue for weddings and functions.

‘This hotel will sensitively re-open this historic asset in a way for the entire community to experience and appreciate,’ said Anthony Goh, a spokesperson for the Shayher Group, which is re-developing the prison. ‘In developing these plans, we have taken inspiration from similar projects in the United States and United Kingdom that have re-adapted jails into beautiful accommodation, paying tribute to the past by re-positioning them for the future.’

Rachel Argaman, CEO of TFE Hotels, said the hotel would attract ‘locals and visitors from overseas who will be intrigued to learn about Australia’s penal past’.

‘Hotels provide a great way to preserve the history of heritage-listed buildings, allowing unique and memorable experiences for guests who learn and experience aspects of that rich past.’

The hotel is expected to open in 2020, pending planning and heritage permits and construction approvals.

The prison housed convicts until 1997.

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