Historic Southern Highlands property to relaunch as five-star hospitality venue

Originally hand-built by convicts in 1844, Taylor’s Crown Inn is relaunching in May 2021 as a contemporary yet historic five-star hospitality venue in the heart of the NSW Southern Highlands.

As one of Australia’s oldest public houses, wine storage vaults and heritage locations, the property is being reimagined and restored as Berrima Vault House by a team of local and global experts.

With an in-house concierge, members and guests can access a range of activities, services and social settings including boutique accommodation, change room facilities, club lounges, gardens, jail cells transformed into intimate private dining rooms, meeting spaces, cultural event programming, and access to luxury brand partners.

Furthermore, a “village shop of the future” will retail limited edition and bespoke lifestyle items at Berrima Vault House.

Image source/Berrima Vault House/Abbie Melle

Leading the revitalisation is CEO Si Philby, founder of Background Creative Counsel and a Southern Highlands resident, who has collaborated with fellow local residents Paul Nemeth and Oliver Peagam on the project.

“When I first saw this building, it was clear there was a special canvas to work with,” Philby said.

“The property has a series of spaces – including unseen rooms that have stood the test of time – with unbelievable history. We have curated a specific team with local expertise and world-class credentials to bring the building back to life for the 21st century.”

Jason Cooley, former area general manager of QT Hotels; interior design firm CP&Co; Mark Takla of Paramount Trade Group; Stuart Holt, CEO of award-winning UK architecture and design company Javelin Block; and Dan Flower, former global creative director of Soho House, have all played a part in the revitalisation project.

Image source/Berrima Vault House/Abbie Melle

“Having launched houses in West Hollywood, Berlin, Miami and London, the opportunity to help Si and his team is a no-brainer,” Flower said.

“I love Australia, the building is phenomenal, and the concept is bang-on for how people want to work and play these days. Despite the ‘C’ word, there’s no better time for new forms of hospitality in places outside of cities.”

Holt said: “I’ve been to Berrima and know the building. All the bones are there – it’s a ‘less is more’ approach. Respect the history, understand the present and reanimate it for the future.

“I’m looking forward to some tomfoolery in the jail cells.”