Opened in 1904, the Hydro Majestic Hotel began its life as an Edwardian house hotel and Australia’s first Hydropathic retreat. Developed between Ellis’s Belgravia Hotel and the home of William Henry Hargraves, the retreat was the host to many notable Australians and international guests, including Prime Ministers Sir Edmund Barton and Joseph Cook, opera singer Dame Nelly Melba, boxer Tommy Burns, heiress Bertha Krupp, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Julian Blau – the creator of the perfume 4711 – to mention but a few.
The rejuvenation of the Hydro looks to recapture the grandeur and harness the atmosphere and mood of the Hydro Majestic. Referencing the austere beauty of the Edwardian, the generosity of the Nouveau of the Belle Époque and moments of Art Deco, the objective is not to create a museum, but to create a living and vibrant hotel that reflects and reveres the past and has an eye to the future.
Stage one will include the revitalisation of the majority of the existing buildings, including the Casino Building, The Wintergarden, The Majestic Ballroom, The Flying Fox and Cat’s Alley,The Delmonte Lobby and Conference Rooms. The famous and fondly remembered Ballroom will have a beautiful new lobby, large garden reception terrace and a pre-function area.
It also marks the opening of a new entry point: The Majestic Point Lookout at the Katoomba end of the site, where a range of spectacular venues is available to the public.
The new Mark Foy Pavilion, named after its retail baron founder, will be the place to discover the history of The Hydro Majestic and to share all that is remarkable about the Blue Mountains region at the Mark Foy Pavilion Providores. Celebrating the spirit of the Royal Easter Show pavilions of Sydney’s old showgrounds and operating as a magnificent interactive ‘living’ history space, the Mark Foy Pavilion will house a vibrant providores showcasing boutique and unique food and wine from the Blue Mountains and its regions. Tastes will include Mudgee, Bathurst, Orange and the Western Plains. “A Taste of the Blue Mountains” retail and exhibition space will also explore the history of the Hydro, including multimedia screening suites and tours. A destination not to be missed by any traveller!
The Boiler House will be open to the public for the first time in over 100 years and recognises the history of the Hydro Majestic Hotel being powered with electricity four days before the Sydney metropolitan region. The Boiler House will include a gallery, bistro, and beautiful Terrace Restaurant looking over the breathtaking Majestic Point Lookout.
The new Majestic Point Lookout will have picnic and market grounds and provide public access to the best views of the Megalong Valley. Proving a venue for a host of wonderful market and public activities, art, antiques and music, and encouraging the lost art of public promenading.
During this time the Belgravia Wing will be used to house the Hotel Management Institute, an elite hospitality training school working with The Hydro Majestic, Lilianfels Resort & Spa and Echoes Boutique Hotel & Restaurant.
Conferences, dinners and events servicing up to 250 guests with pre-function and service facilities will be available in both the Majestic Ballroom and The Wintergarden.
Stage two will include the revitalisation of existing heritage rooms and the creation of a new Belgravia Wing and Mark Foy Wings. Providing 140 rooms with historically inspired suites with a ‘bit of hip’ that reference the past and fold into the present with absolute luxe! All suites will have magnificent valley views and private access to the exclusive beautiful Art Deco Belgravia Lounge.
Interior and exterior design cues reflect a time of Empire, which echo the flavour of the original Hydro Majestic and put it proudly with other hotel contemporaries like the Raffles of Singapore and the Lavinia in Sri Lanka.
Stage two also includes putting the ‘hydro’ back into the Hydro Majestic, with the Hydro Majestic Spa. Boasting the largest spa facility in the nation, swimming pools, hydrotherapy pools, fragrant steam, ice rooms, rain and more. It will be a place to come and spend a day of absolute luxury.
The historic Avenue of Pines will be reinstated to flank the highway as it did for over 100 years and will return the landmark so fondly held in the minds of generations of Australians. Magnificent new landscape plantings reflecting the great gardens of the Blue Mountains, and inspired by legendary landscape architect Paul Sorensen will dress the façade of the buildings. The historic croquet lawn will live again, plus a beautiful new garden terrace entry to the Majestic Ballroom and Majestic Point Lookout. The escarpment aprons, encompassing a unique horticultural vision, will incorporate both European and Australian native plantings.