Melbourne Travel Guide
At last, we said last month, Ritz-Carlton Hotels is returning to Australia. That was following the announcement of a new hotel in Perth, part of a mixed-use complex with the usual residences, retail spaces, and restaurants. If that was good news, here is more: a second Ritz-Carlton hotel will come to Melbourne, scooping up the title of highest hotel in Australia in the process.
Just as in the country’s far west, the hotel will be part of a mixed-use project called 250 Spencer Street, where the hotel will have 250 rooms between floor 64 and 77 in one of multiple towers (something tells us the Sofitel Melbourne, between floors 36 and 50 in a tower nearby, is not happy about this).
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Visitors to Melbourne, Australia's second largest city, will be twice as lucky with an announcement for the city's newest Parkroyal Hotel. And best of all, this one is a bit closer to the action of the city then the current airport property.
Located in one of Melbourne's most up-and-coming neighborhoods, Parkroyal Melbourne will be sit on the doorstep of the city's action yet still be within walking distance from Etihad Stadium, Crown Casino and the Central Business District. Playing to its excellent location, the 37-story, glass-shrouded building will sport panoramic views of both the city and Victoria Harbour and since the hotel will take the first 18 floors, we expect some awesome Instagram #hotelview posts from this place.
A 34-room boutique hotel in Melbourne -- built in 1938 and converted into hotel in 1993 -- has recently reopened after months of renovations and is calling itself the world's only dessert-themed hotel.
In case you wonder what a dessert-themed hotel looks like, expect carpets patterned to look like cakes and stools that resemble licorice all-sorts. "The colors and textures of the hotel are all based off desserts' says designer Fady Hachem. "But it's not weird. It's not too out there. It's very comfortable and done subtly". Quite subtle, we'd agree, you kind of have to use your imagination a bit to catch the 'dessert' theme.
Nevertheless, if the decor does inspire your sweet tooth, you can help yourself to the jars of candy in the lobby, bowls of toffee apples at reception, minibars filled with homemade cotton candy and popcorn, and a turn-down service delivering home-made macaroons every night. Just don't forget your toothpaste.
The Adelphi has just opened its 40-seat dessert restaurant and bar, Om Nom, and its Ezard restaurant continues to trade in the basement. The ninth-floor pool deck will be refurbished in April with a bar, a barbecue area and possibly a small cinema.
Rates start at AUD260 ($247).
[Photo: Facebook/Adelphi Hotel Melbourne}
Super trendy and hip Aussie hotelier, QT Hotels keep on keeping on with expansion news. We've told you about their Gold Coast property, their Sydney stunner, their ski lodge, and their Bondi Beach takeover. Now it's Melbourne's turn to get in on the fun.
The city that Aussies consider to be the cultural capital of Oz is set to get their very own hotel that pushes the limits of 'on trend' with their eclectic use of art, style and location.
Currently, the property is home to a well-known cinema but come April of next year, a demolition will make way for a 12-story hotel. The new building will sport 188 quirky guestrooms with 16 spaces reserved for the management group's new venture of high-end apartments, just like the QT Bondi property. Along with creative rooms and fun little details, the CBD/Chinatown hotel will feature a roof-top deck for wining and a restaurant for dining.
An Australian project to build the tallest building in the Southern Hemisphere was approved last week in Melbourne, officially cutting the tape on a 1,273-foot tower called Australia 108, that will house a 288-room hotel which will become the tallest hotel in the world. The whole shebang will cost around $600 million.
The yet-to-be-named hotel will be a “six-star luxury property”, according to its designers, and will have a "hovering" lobby that spans two floors. As you can see in the photo above, it will stick out and appear to dangle midair. We're keeping our fingers crossed for a glass floor!
Thanks to Melbourne-based artist, Matthew Bird, we can now rethink the image we have in our heads as we slide our key-card into a new hotel-room's door. He's created an art installation piece at the city's Hilton on the Park called "Hotel Otherworldly" that reworks an existing hotel room into a fabulous piece of art.
Housed in a fairly non-descript, brown brick building with no balconies, or character for that matter, this artistic hotel room is tucked away amongst business travelers and tourists unknown they might be sleeping next to a piece of art. A design that is as loud as a tornado, maintains the wallflower persona by being purely art.
One of the typical Hilton king guest suites has been transformed into a space where everything installed offers a regional reference to Australia, from flora and fauna to history and culture. A gold slap in the face for the region's gold rush days, art featuring crocodiles and royal blue to signify the history as a British colony all play a significant role in creating not only an over-the-top piece of art, but a reflection of the local culture.
Last we talked about Ovolo Hotels it was all about the first Hong Kong expat property in Melbourne. Out from behind the curtain of obscurity, the hotel decided to branch out internationally and pick the cultural capital of Australia as their first outpost.
At first glance, the nondescript building in the middle of the city could have been any other office building, but little did we know what little treasures we would find inside. For a small hotel, Ovolo Melbourne sure packs a punch...in a good way.
The small lobby proved to be a tight fit with anymore than 2 different guests checking in, but a welcome espresso made the experience a bit more bearable. With a limited, but super cool design, our imagination went into overdrive for what we would experience in the room. After an efficient check-in, we were in the elevator to our one-bed room suite.
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Housed in a former billiard house and named after the champion Aussie player, William Lindrum, the hotel keeps its heritage with a back bar and pool room outfitted with an original table from the Lindrum days. The entire property has been restored to its former glory when the movers and shakers of Melbourne visited the building to relax and unwind with a game of snooker.
Hotel rooms go unused all too often, and it sometimes bugs us when we're forced to pay top dollar, knowing there are rooms unoccupied. Well, Melbourne-based Art Series Hotels has the solution: if there are no guests scheduled to check-in the next day, let the current guests extend their stay!
The Overstay Package allows guests to ring reception right before the standard 11am check-out to see if they can get a few extra hours, or even a few extra nights, in the comfort of their trendy room. So even if the next guest is set to arrive at 6pm, you could still get a few more hours of sleep or an extended bubble bath.
Best part, if you snag this deal, you can stay for free. Yep, nothing, zilch, nada. Makes sense since the room was going unreserved anyway...
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Here's something you don't hear everyday; Kim Kardashian is just a normal traveler that likes some familiarity when bouncing from hotel to hotel. Well, she's as normal as the next person that can afford a $600+ per night suite overlooking the nightly fire show on the banks of Melbourne's Yarra River.
Last week, Kim was gallivanting all over Australia promoting her weight-loss product Quick Trim and landed in Melbourne where she stayed at the super sleek Crown Metropol, the hip brother of Crown Towers. The folks over at Crown knew what to do to make her feel like she was at home and, in true Kardashian fashion, she took to Twitter to brag.
Hong Kong-based boutique hotel chain, Ovolo, has opened up its first international property in Melbourne. Located on Little Bourke Street in the heart of the CBD (aka the Central Business District), hotel guests will be in a convenient area, just steps away from boutique shopping, Parliament House, and the cultural center's hip restaurants and coffee bars.
Ovolo has used the city's famous laneways as it's primary design focus. These laneways are hidden gems filled with restaurants and boutiques typically speckled with brightly colored graffiti art. So, to that end, each room is a mix of dark-tone sleek with pops of color to liven up the space.
Each room is a tech-wonder with Apple TV, iPads on request, free WiFi, and complimentary self-laundry. And the perks don't end there.....
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In other (not so major) hotel news today, our favorite art-loving Aussie hotel brand, Art Series Hotels, has launched their newest promotion, "Which Warhol." Over the course of the next few months, guests will be presented with multiple Andy Warhol replicas hanging in the hallways, and among the fakes will be an original Warhol, valued at $20,000, which only the keenest of eyes will be able to pick out.
Whoever is actually able to figure out which Warhol is which gets to take it home!
We've always dreamed of hanging an actual Warhol in our bedroom, and never thought that would come about by visiting a hotel in Australia. But now that the possibility is out there...