The couple behind HIP V. HYPE weren’t always in the business of sustainable consulting and property development. In fact, their interest in the industry started while travelling the world as professional skiers.
Founder Liam Wallis spent 10 years as a freeride skier and coach, while director of projects Katya Crema was also an elite athlete in the sport, representing Australia (twice!) at the Winter Olympics. Impressively, it was during this time that they both decided to study architecture and property at the University of Melbourne.
‘Our years of travelling across Europe, North America and Japan in harsh mountain climates exposed us to exceptional, high-quality apartment design,’ Katya says. ‘We now integrate many of these features into our own projects here in Melbourne.’
HIP V. HYPE have since completed a number of sustainable builds – including the Ferrars & York building in South Melbourne. And now, they’re hoping to champion low-impact living in a new way, opening the penthouse of this inner-city complex as a new accomodation, the HV.Hotel.
‘The idea for HV.Hotel was born out of an awareness that unfortunately very few people actually get to experience what it’s like to live in a highly sustainable apartment,’ Katya explains. ‘The concept is based on HIP V. HYPE’s strong belief that the buildings we choose to live in can drive the positive impact our cities deserve.’
That’s why the apartment makes no compromise between sustainability and style. Beyond the light-filled interiors, timber features and covetable collection of Australian art, it has a fully electric kitchen, and uses passive design principles that have earned the abode an 8.1 stars NatHERS rating! They’ve also opted into GreenPower, which helps grow the demand for renewable energy.
Katya says ‘seeing is believing’ when it comes to inspiring sustainable change, and whilst you can’t necessarily see some of these features, you can ‘feel them when you’re in the space’.
‘Despite its proximity to the hustle and bustle of Melbourne’s CBD, the apartment is so remarkably quiet,’ she adds. ‘With the windows closed, you wouldn’t even know the city is on your doorstep. The air feels fresh, with constant filtered air supply running through the Energy Recovery Ventilator (ERV).’
‘During a stay at HV.Hotel, guests can experience the benefits of living in a sustainable home firsthand: more consistent internal temperatures, enhanced acoustic performance, fresher air, lower energy use and a lower carbon footprint.’
Thoughtful additions like a market bag also encourage low-waste living, so that visitors can head across the road to explore the world of local, fresh produce the famous South Melbourne markets.
They’ve made the most of its location with a private outdoor balcony, but guests also get access to the building’s communal roof yard where you can chat with residents, or take in the changing colours of the night sky amid the city’s sparkling lights!