December 6, 2022 | By Graeme Kemlo | Saint Haven in Collingwood will open in March 2023

In the drive to make Docklands more of a destination in Melbourne, the AFL is midway through a $225 million upgrade of Marvel Stadium, but a new $1.75 billion “transformation” of a former wharf precinct has been proposed.

The 53,000 seat stadium for football and cricket is also the largest plenary venue outside Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre and has been used to banquet 5,000 or cocktail 10,000 people on its grass arena.

Revitalising the 20 year-old stadium with an operable roof, will add options for a year-round sports and entertainment venue with multiple meeting and event spaces, including a town square.

But less than 200m down Harbour Boulevard from the 19,000m2 stadium is one of the last major plots of land – measuring 18,800m2 – and developer Tim Gurner is promising a city-defining mega-project that will “rival the awe-inspiring buildings of Singapore, Dubai, London and New York”.

The land has frontages to Wurundjeri Way, Dudley Street and Harbour Esplanade, with waterfront views and will form a new western entrance to Docklands.

In recent media interviews about the project, Gurner says his joint venture development team will reveal plans before the end of 2022. But Gurner has hinted at the project being something Docklands has never seen – “something to put Melbourne on the global map” and to help Melbourne get back its title as the world’s most liveable city.

Clues to the key elements of the project – apart from high-rise towers of accommodation for rental and for sale – is a new luxury five-star hotel, a major wellness centre, public green space and the usual mixed-use retail and commercial precinct.

To gain further insight into Gurner’s vision, we need look no further than a project he is set to unveil in Collingwood in March 2023. That’s when Saint Haven debuts, a luxury holistic wellness centre, set up to be more like a private club than a plain old gym.

Among other things it will offer cryotherapy, IV infusion therapies and pressurised hyperbaric oxygen pods.

Potential members of Saint Haven need to pass an application process and be prepared to pay up to $2,000 a month to access a facility that includes an Italian-inspired bathing grotto.

Based on facilities he has researched overseas, Saint Haven is more than a hangout for gym rats – expect six-star service, spaces to exercise, recover and relax, even coworking areas to connect or network, eat and drink.