Ovolo Nishi: Canberra's new micro-hotel offers some of the tiniest rooms in Australia

When the Hong Kong-based Ovolo group, known for its cleverly offbeat establishments, took over Australia's edgiest contemporary hotel, er, hotel, in Canberra, of all places, it decided to think small in a kind of big picture way.

Formerly known as Hotel Hotel, the newly-named Ovolo Nishi – part of the national capital's cutting-edge New Acton art and cultural precinct – recently unveiled some of the tiniest, though ingeniously compact, rooms in the land at a mere 15 square metres each.

It's part of a global trend in the downsizing of travel, including the sort of compact hotel digs once only found in Tokyo, with Ovolo Nishi's 17 inviting "snug rooms", designed by Luchetti Krelle, the award-winning Sydney interior design firm, using an array of space-spacing tricks.

Among the other changes since Ovolo's arrival at New Acton has been the relocation of the Good Food Guide-listed Monster Kitchen & Bar from the spacious main lobby, or atrium, space, to its own room, complete with a stunning centrepiece circular fireplace ringed by plush leather cushions.

It's the ideal retreat from where to conclude a chilly Canberra winter's day, perhaps following a visit to the National Gallery of Australia's blockbuster Monet: Impression Sunrise exhibition running until September 1.

Oh, and do feel free to stretch out as the restaurant is monstrously large compared with those cosy, cunningly-condensed new rooms.

Doubles start from $220 for a snug room (conditions apply). See ovolohotels.com.au; nga.gov.au

The writer stayed as a guest of the hotel.

See also: Ovolo hotels where 'everything in the room should be yours'

See also: Two rooms per floor: Hong Kong hotel makes the most of a tight space