The Calile Hotel in Fortitude Valley is the epitome of Miami-styled retro cool with a combination of fresh pastel colors, soft-toned marbles and architectural arches straight out of a stylish 60s design guide. Surrounded by luxe boutiques and with a classy drive-through porte cochere, I’m expecting a classic E Type Jaguar on the drive, and a fashion model in a mini skirt to be poised at the entrance. Turns out there’s no Jag. But I do see a new Mini Cooper with a debonaire older gent and his fashionable young niece. It feels like I could definitely be in the swinging sixties at this point.
The Calile’s porters greet me at the door with a cheery welcome and dazzling smiles. The reception area has the same 60s style as the rest of the property with sunken lounges in retro fabrics and classic pendant lighting. I’ve only just arrived and I am already loving this new Brisbane hotel. Only two things would make it even more perfect: an E Type Jag and some designer clothes from the adjacent luxury stores that wrap around the hotel. The Calile Hotel is ideally located on James Street in Brisbane and fits hand-in-glove with the area’s fashion boutiques, eateries and galleries.
As I’m handed my room key, I’m also given a quick verbal tour of the hotel’s facilities, which include a bar and café on the ground, and a pool and restaurant on level one, along with the spa and gym. Rooms at The Calile are styled with the same 60s feel, with a less is more look and a calming palette of soft pastels and white marble flooring. Each one is generously sized and comes with a King size bed, an adjacent day bed, dining table and chairs for two, an in-room mini bar and Nespresso machine, television with Chromecast and most important of all, fast complimentary Wi-Fi.
Bathing pleasure can be found in the room’s unique seashell curved shower area, which also has a marble bench with twin sinks and large sliding mirror wall panel plus Grown Alchemist bath products which smell so good that we take what’s left of them home. After a quick approving look around the room, I immediately head to the balcony and discover a scene straight out of the glamorous 1964 James Bond film ‘Goldfinger’. Striped jade-green umbrellas, sun loungers, and private lounge nooks surround a glimmering blue green pool, complete with palm trees. Much to Tiana’s distress, there’s no handsome young Sean Connery wearing his infamous 1960s pale blue terrycloth playsuit.
However, lots of equally (or, some might say, more) stylish patrons are enjoying a slice of retro urban cool in Brisbane’s inner city. It’s easy to see why The Calile Hotel is popular with locals after a weekend getaway and visitors seeking a fresh and trendy business or leisure stay. As it’s late afternoon and a little chilly, I pass on a swim and head out to explore the hotel. The hotel is designed with Brisbane’s tropical climate in mind with large open-air corridors that catch the breeze.
We were impressed with the chilled filtered water dispensers in the walkways and attractive glass carafe and matching glasses in our room to cut down on plastic waste. Level one of the hotel is where all the action happens with the beautiful pool deck and modern Greek restaurant Hellenika. This is definitely the spot for serious people watching with a glass of white wine and a passing parade of ‘beautiful people’ on the pool deck. Other delights to be found on level one of the hotel are the library, gymnasium, and KAILO Wellness Medispa, a one stop shop for pampering and possibly prepping so you look the part at The Calile’s pool area. Back down on ground level is the reception lounge and The Lobby Bar.
The Lobby Bar is open from early morning for coffee and in-house breakfast and also caters for lunch and dinner. It is also a trendy hangout for after work cocktails and snacks, with a multitude of business-suited ladies and gents perched along the pink marble bar in the evening. Overall, The Calilie Hotel raises the bar for accommodation in Brisbane. The innovative retro cool design, practicality of space, soothing pastel decor, and charming service makes this a destination hotel of choice. We dare you to turn up to the pool deck in a retro blue terrycloth playsuit and watch the heads turn. Not game? In that case, you should just come and stay at the hotel. You’ll be glad you did.
Disclosure: The writers stayed as guests of The Calile Hotel and are already planning a return visit at their own expense.
If you’re looking for accommodation in Brisbane, we have reviewed the Treasury Hotel, The Calile, Ovolo The Valley, W Brisbane, Capri by Fraser Brisbane, Hilton Brisbane, The Johnson, NEXT Hotel Brisbane, Sage Hotel James Street, The Westin Brisbane, Oaks Brisbane Festival Suites, Royal on the Park, Ibis Styles Elizabeth Street, Sofitel Brisbane, Crystalbrook Vincent, The Inchcolm by Ovolo, Alex Perry Hotel & Apartments, and Pullman Brisbane Airport.