Cheers To Us, Thanks To You


We just turned three, and because that’s long enough to start feeling nostalgic, we spoke to three of our long-term collaborators about their first memories of PHH, favourite spots in the hotel, and their own version of a Permanent Vacation.

Image by Tom Ross

Tom Ross, Photographer

What is your first memory of PHH or are there any stories around your first visit/stay?

I came straight from a long haul flight from San Francisco and was so glad to crash in the homely comfort of PHH. It was February and hot, I remember thinking oh wow a hotel where you can actually open the windows and let the breeze through. Dreamy.


What does a Permanent Vacation mean to you?

I guess Permanent Vacation is about small luxuries often, rather than slogging away waiting for a time to enjoy yourself.


Your favourite room/area in the hotel.

By far the Sunny rooms on the corner. Feels like you’re staying at a friend with great taste’s apartment. The noise of Surry and the city through the windows and popping downstairs for a coffee like you’re an instant local.


What do you do and how did you come to work with PHH?

I’m a photographer and was commissioned to shoot the hotel, and surrounding Surry Hills, for the launch of the hotel. To this day, one of my all-time favourite gigs.


*The above is probably my favourite photo. I like how it collapses the hotel into the surrounding neighbourhood, while also giving you an idea of the atmosphere and what it feels like to spend a slow morning there.

Bettina Robinson
Paramount House Hotel by Breathe Architecture

Bettina Robinson- Associate and Head of Interiors, Breathe Architecture

What is your first memory of PHH?

My first stay at Paramount House was during the photoshoot, days before the hotel was expected to officially open. It was a thoroughly exhausting shoot but worth every trip up and down the corridors!  Pulling away the drop sheets, searching for every moment of delight to photograph and being able to get that first-hand experience of how each space felt was a rewarding experience.


Your favourite room/area in the hotel?

I enjoy how the skin of the existing building sets the mood on each level and makes no two rooms the same. Level 1 & 2 cocoons you within the existing brick warehouse creating a very textural and tranquil interior. Level 3 provides unexpected delight as you are faced with the juxtaposition of the top of the existing building meeting with the new.  Lastly the lofty Level 4 mezzanine suites evoke a sense of calmness as the slow moment of the sun filters through the copper chevron facade.

We were particularly meticulous in exposing the existing building to bring the raw materiality and history to light. Through construction, we discovered layers of worn materials that we could never have imagined or created from scratch. These moments provided genuine character and uniqueness which aligned with the heart of the clients brief.

A great example of this is the room next to the lift on level 3 which leaves a trace of the existing warehouse roofline.


How did you come to work with PHH?

Breathe had developed a close relationship with owner, Mark Dundon through previously designing two cafe fit-outs for him in Melbourne (Seven Seeds & Brother Baba Budan).


Jasmine and Shy - After Hours Studio

Shy Trutweinn and Jasmine Gallagher- Co-directors, After Hours Studio

What is your first memory of PHH or are there any stories around your first visit/stay?

We don’t kiss and tell.


What’s your idea of a Permanent Vacation?

We’d like to call on the Urban Dictionary definition for this one: A permanent vacation occurs when an employee decides their vacation away from the company will indeed be permanent. For us, it usually means switching on the out-of-office and chucking back some vinos. Big mood.


Your favourite room/area in the hotel.

Definitely the elevator — you never know who you’re going to run into. One time we were fortunate enough to share the lift with Russel Beard.


What does After Hours Studio do?

After Hours Studio is a brand and design studio founded by long time PHH collaborator Shy Trutwein. We’ve recently been working with the team to help turn their great creative ideas into visuals – you’ll spot our work on stubby coolers, Kit Kats, keychains, coasters and more. Even on the Birthday cake above!

Everyday Room on Level 3