Welcome to Melbourne’s Motel California: located in Barker Road in the inner eastern suburb of Hawthorn. The 82 room motel was built in 1960 on the site of the former Barker railway station on the closed Kew branch line. Originally known for a variety of different themed suites, when I passed the motel in 2005 it was looking rather dated.
Fast forward to 2011 and the buildings are well and truly trashed: and now better known as an abandoned building to explore. The motel closed back in April 2008, with the land being sold to Thorney Properties for an an 87-apartment retirement village. The site has since been put back on the market, awaiting demolition for another apartment development.
Back in 2005 I also wandered around to the back gate, where everything was spic and span.
In the 2011 view the same view is full of overgrown trees – how did they grow so tall in six years?