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Published on : Wednesday, August 3, 2016
Pentridge Prison B Division which was once the the site of bashings, escapes and a murder, will be converted into a luxury hotel. The historic prison is located just 8km from central Melbourne, will soon be transformed into one of Australia’s most unique accommodation offerings, with TFE Hotels signing an agreement to operate an Adina Apartment Hotel on the site.
Anthony Goh, spokesman for Pentridge site owner Shayher Group, said the new Adina Apartment Hotel will “offer guests the chance to stay in a historic converted prison cell” as “a unique accommodation experience”. He also added that some other cells will be retained in their jail-era condition and be re-opened for community viewing.
The new hotel will comprise of many elements, among them the most priced about element will be an opportunity to stay in a converted prison cell. The prison’s former chapel will also be converted into a venue for weddings and functions.
In a vacant land adjacent to the prison, another building will be constructed, providing further nine levels of accommodation, residential apartments and other communal facilities.
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”. She also added that 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.
Before it closed in 1997, B Division contributed its share of infamy. In 1993, Paul Steven Haigh was found guilty of murdering fellow inmate Donald George Hatherley by hanging and choking him a cell in 1991. In 1996, a 23-year-old prisoner was bashed in his cell in the same block.
The hotel and residential development is expected to open in 2020, subject to planning and heritage permits.