The city of Barossa in South Australia is world-renowned for its big and bold Shiraz. Despite this, it would soon be recognized for something even bolder: Oscar Seppeltsfield, a ‘six-star’ hotel – an architectural gem – that opened amid the historic vineyards of the Seppeltsfield winery in 2024.
Designed by Adelaide, the team behind the impressive new visitor center at Monarto Zoo, the controversial 12-story hotel has been given the green light by the local council, with the ground being laid to break the ambitious development later this year.
Although the official Australia rating is only five-star, the supposed luxury hotel will feature 71 rooms and suites entirely with a balcony, fine dining restaurant, infinity-edge pool and spa, and a rooftop bar offering 360-degree views across the surrounding countryside.
While an official hotel operator has yet to be revealed, you can be sure that it will be a brand that knows and understands the levels of service required for such an establishment.
Just under an hour from Adelaide, Sebeltsfield was founded by Joseph and Jonah Sibelt in the 1850s, with the estate thriving on a backdrop of wine, brandy and vermouth production, helping to shape the history of winemaking in Australia.
Current owner Warren Randall purchased the award-winning property in 2009, reviving the vineyards and brand, and setting it on a path to becoming a global destination.
Named after pioneering Winemark firm Oscar Benno Seppelt, the building has a delicate, glass-encased design — resembling glass slippers or shoes, by some — inspired by the history of the vineyards and wine barrels of the famous Centennial cellar.
Owner and CEO Randall says he hopes the unique building will eventually become an icon of Barossa, like the Sydney Opera House.
It should also be noted that the design of the Opera House was not without controversy, as Jorn Utzon’s masterpiece did not win the public good it has today for some time.
“The hotel will be gently placed in the middle of the Great Terraced Vineyard, surrounded by century-old bush vineyards, and a surprisingly quiet location and within walking distance of the world-class tourist village of Seppeltsfield,” Randall says.
“In 2019, Seppeltsfield was named one of the world’s 50 best vineyards. The addition of this luxury hotel will elevate Seppeltsfield to one of the top five vineyards in the world, in turn raising Australia’s global wine reputation.”
When complete, Oscar Seppeltsfield will join the elite group of vineyard hotels that includes the extraordinary Marques de Riscal led by Frank Gehry in Spain, where design boundaries are just as important as fine wines bottled on site.
Although the hotel is still far away, it is worth waiting patiently, like the fine cellar wine. There is a good chance that it will eventually make its way to our list of the best resorts and lodges in Australia as well.
One of Australia’s most popular wine regions, Barossa Valley is home to 150 wineries and 80 cellar doors, including Yalumba, Peter Lehmann Wines, and Jacob’s Creek.