Inside the seedy motel where Nick Cave’s son died
The troubled son of legendary rockstar Nick Cave died in a seedy $130-per-night north Melbourne hotel that is encompassed by barbed wire, emblazoned with graffiti and frequented by drug dealers who prey on the addicts living inside.
Jethro Lazenby died in May, aged 30, just two days after being released from prison for a brutal attack on his mother that saw the addict knee her in the face during a row over cigarettes – leaving her ‘bruised and bleeding’.
Daily Mail Australia visited the Coburg Motor Inn where Lazenby was found dead, after revealing last month Lazenby had spent a large portion of his life in and out of custody as his life spiralled out of control in a haze of illicit drugs.
The accomodation’s roof had recently been damaged with a tarp crudely hung over to protect the inside from the rain, while dusty temporary fencing and barbed wire separated the halfway house from a lush park behind it – with dozens of children playing on a large playground.
Locals said the area is littered with drug dealers attempting to take advantage of the establishment, with Daily Mail Australia witnessing a man lurking outside the motel on his phone before dropping a small package in the bushes and walking away.
Coburg Motor Inn – a seedy $130 per night hotel that is used by the Victorian government and justice system to house ex-convicts and drug addicts leaving rehabilitation centres
Graffiti covers large parts of the hotel where Jethro Lazenby spent his final hours – after the son of legendary rockstar Nick Cave died in May
Sitting on the busy Sydney Road, the motel overlooks a lush reserve full of families and locals exercising – contrasted by the struggling guests of the emergency accomodation
A Jim Beam stubby holder and series of hats can be seen sitting on the windowsill of one of the motel’s rooms
Jethro Lazenby died in May aged 30 just two days after being released from prison for a brutal attack on his mother that saw the addict knee her in the face during a row over cigarettes
The Coburg Motor Inn is being subsidised by the government, organisations including VincentCare and the justice system as emergency housing for people leaving drug rehabilitation centres or prison – with the majority of its 30 rooms housing people in need.
Lazenby spent his final hours inside the motel, which has been described by former guests as ‘the worst I’ve seen in my life’ and a homeless man say he’d rather sleep on the streets.
It sits off Melbourne’s busy Sydney Road, sandwiched between the major thoroughfare and a tranquil grassland teeming with families and exercisers.
A decrepit hangout was created underneath the hotel, filled with rubbish, chairs, luggage and medication
There appears to be sleeping apparatus in the hangout, with an esky and empty beer bottles littered throughout
An empty Neurofen packet, empty McDonalds bags and clothing are also visible under the Coburg Motor Inn
A filthy sleeping bag has been left behind by people using the area underneath the hotel’s concrete structure
The Coburg Lake Reserve, which features a bridge over the Merri Creek, a large play area for kids and a BBQ section, is heavily contrasted by the filthy motel overlooking it.
A section below a concrete structure wall has seen people rip through the chainlink barrier and set up a decrepit hang out – littered with empty beer bottles, medication, luggage and even a fire extinguisher.
The staircase that overlooks the park is covered in graffiti, as is the area below the motel and sections of its exterior blue walls.
The area has been graffitied and had a distinct foul odour emanating from it
An esky has been left behind by people using the small hangout area
The emergency housing overlooks Coburg Lake Reserve – a lush grassland that features a bridge over the Merri Creek, a large play area for kids and a BBQ section
Barbed wire and dusty temporary fencing encompasses the hotel and separates junkies from children playing in the park
A woman enjoying the reserve’s playground with her young daughter said it worried her the premises was being used as a halfway house so close to children.
‘I didn’t know that’s what it was being used for, but it definitely makes me nervous there could be needles and paraphernalia around,’ the mother told Daily Mail Australia.
‘It wouldn’t stop me coming here because it’s a beautiful park but definitely makes me more anxious and have to keep a better eye on my daughter.’
A mother told Daily Mail Australia she was concerned having the halfway house so close to the park
The hotel’s balcony overlooks the lush Coburg Lake Reserve below it – which was teeming with families and residents working out
Despite a number of cars being parked in the motel, there was a lack of movement
Lazenby had been out of jail for just two days and was staying at the Coburg Motor Inn prior to his death
Former guests said the smell emanating from some of the rooms was so overwhelming they couldn’t stay long, while a rough sleeping man who spent a night in the Coburg Motor Inn told The Age he’d rather be homeless.
‘I left after one night – it was a bloody disgrace,’ Robert Old said.
‘The rooms were filthy and the staircase was used as a toilet by the residents, who were all affected by drugs and alcohol. It was not safe at all.
‘I just want a little place to myself. It’s asking a lot I know. If all else fails I’ll just stick to the streets.’
Rooms cost around $130 a night, with reviews on websites including TripAdvisor offering disturbing experiences of travellers spending a night at the Coburg Motor Inn.
The majority of reviews on the popular website list the hotel as ‘terrible’, with one person saying it was ‘so bad it was comical’.
‘The worst motel I’ve ever seen in my life,’ a person commented, claiming strangers had attempted to break into her room through the night.
Another wrote: ‘We just survived 3 nights in this hell hole. When we closed the door it had patched holes and two bolts ripped off the door – the kitchenette had ants, the curtains had holes, and the bathroom was foul.’
The hotel’s pool had a small patch of green liquid at its base, with rubbish floating in the ooze.
The only movement inside the Coburg Motor Inn was the motel’s cleaner, who scurried away after seeing Daily Mail Australia’s photographer.
Locals say there are often drug dealers hanging out in front of the hotel on Melbourne’s busy Sydney Road
Graffiti is plastered on the interior and exterior walls of the motel
The majority of the hotel’s 30 rooms are being used for emergency housing
The hotel’s pool had a small patch of green liquid at its base, with rubbish floating in the ooze
The majority of the motel’s rooms are being used to house ex-cons and people leaving drug rehabilitation centres
Legendary performer Nick Cave didn’t meet Lazenby until the boy was aged about 7
Lazenby had been a successful model as a teenager, strutting along catwalks across Europe before his epic fall from grace around 2012.
At the time of Lazenby’s death he had been awaiting sentence over a series of petty thefts and a savage attack on his mum Lee-Anne Lazenby.
While released on bail, the ex-model was not expected to remain on the streets very long. Lazenby had a shocking criminal history, which had seen him prosecuted over a swag of petty thefts, drug crimes and domestic violence.
Upon his passing inside the dingy motel, he had been facing further allegations of assault, domestic violence and petty thefts.
Getting advice from me is like being measured by the undertaker. Nick Cave, 2015
Lazenby had wound-up at the Coburg Motor Inn after the court forbid him from residing with his mother.
By now a dishevelled wreck, it remains unclear why Lazenby was unable to return to the Carlton apartment of his famous father, where he had lived at least up until 2018.
It was the address he had been bailed to live at after being charged with the brutal assault of his then girlfriend.
Back then, the court heard Lazenby had struck his terrified partner in the face after a squabble over money.
Lazenby had threatened to murder the woman after kicking her onto a couch and twisting her arm behind her back.
Many of the doors are damaged while part of the roof had recently been damaged, protected crudely by a tarp
The hotel is subsidised by the state government and legal system who use it for emergency housing
The Coburg Motor Inn has been listed as ‘terrible’ by dozens of people on review websites
Lee-Anne Lazenby makes a call outside Collingwood’s Stomping Ground Beer Hall in the days following her son’s death
The pair had been brought to police attention earlier that day after a fight over drugs.
At the time, police had opposed Lazenby’s bail due his disgraceful criminal history, which had seen him blatantly disregard court orders.
On one occasion, Lazenby had returned to assault his girlfriend immediately after being released on bail.
In a deal with prosecutors, Lazenby pleaded guilty to one count of unlawful assault and breaching court orders.
He was due to front court again to face sentence on June 29, but had a series of other matters listed on the court system at the time of his death.
Lazenby had the world at his feet in the early 2000s when he managed to score some top modelling jobs on the back of his famous father’s name.
He opened the Mercedes Australian Fashion Week in Sydney in April 2006 when he was just 15-years of age.
Danica Conwell, who’d been both a close friend and girlfriend to Lazenby for six years, denied rumours he’d taken his own life, saying he’d made plans to see her later than night. She said his death was related to him using heroin.
Danica Conwell, who shared a close friendship with Lazenby for six years and was in a turbulent relationship with him, has put to bed rumours he may have taken his own life, noting had made plans to see her that evening and was using heroin
Nick Cave and his son Jethro are pictured at the Portobello Film Festival Fashion Show in London in 2006
She’s struggling to cope with his death and hit out at his family for allegedly excluding her from memorial.
‘Unfortunately I wasn’t invited to the funeral… His family won’t allow me closure and I really f**king need it,’ she said.
Ms Conwell said there is no doubt in her mind that he would have wanted her there.
‘I’m not doing well with this at all and that’s what wakes are for to say good bye, help closure on the mourning process… It’s evil to deny someone this.’