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Larwill studio
Photograph: Supplied The Larwill Studio

Melbourne's best cheap hotels for those on a budget

Cheap hotels in Melbourne are proving style and comfort don’t have to cost a fortune

By Time Out editors

You don't have to spend a ton of money to enjoy a good night's sleep. Melbourne has plenty of gorgeous, luxury hotels, but there are also hidden gems in every corner of the city where you can rest your head for less than $150 a night. 

Share a room with friends for an even more affordable night in the city, and don't be afraid to trade space for location. You're only sleeping, after all.

Melbourne is jam-packed with affordable hotels for penny pinchers locked out of the luxury hotel market. From hip pub stays in up-and-coming ‘hoods to classic, under-the-radar heritage hotels in the centre of the city and effortlessly hip pads on the fringes of town, Melbourne’s budget hotels prove that you don’t have to drop 500 bucks a night to enjoy a night to remember. 

But if you do feel like dropping $500 bucks a night, here are Melbourne’s best luxury hotels. Want more options? Check out the best hotels in Melbourne. Or get out of town entirely with these road trips from Melbourne.

The best cheap hotels in Melbourne

Jazz Corner Hotel
Photograph: Supplied

1. The Jazz Corner Hotel

Hotels Melbourne

Walk this way, jazzheads. Having launched itself on Melbourne's in early 2017, The Jazz Corner pays homage to the greats: think Coltrane, Davis, Parker… Plus, they promote the newbies too, with regular live gigs in the basement bar. The rooms are all self-contained studios or two-bed apartments, decked out in leather, wood, cool blues and LP sleeves on the walls. While there are kitchens in the apartments, you can order room service too, then chill in front of the TV in the living room with your meal, or admire the view.

Time Out tip: With Bird’s Basement jazz club located just below the hotel, fans of funk, blues, jazz, swing, big band and bebop will love staying so close to the action.  

The Larwill Studio
Photograph: Supplied

2. Art Series - The Larwill Studio

Hotels Parkville

The Art Series group have hotels all over Melbourne: The Blackman, The Cullen and The Olsen being a few of the others. If you hadn't already guessed, each hotel is devoted to a different Australian artist and The Larwill is no different. From the lobby to the bedrooms to the boardrooms, David Larwill's art sits centre-stage. It's even on the Smart cars you can hire out for $50/d. To complement the pieces, the rest of the decor is contemporary-cool, bright and homely, so fellow artists can happily get to work at the in-room desks. Each room also comes with EVO toiletries, yoga mats and Art Series signature bedding.

Time Out Tip: Want to know more about the life and times of David Larwill? Guests can join an in-house Art Advocate on a free tour of the art displayed throughout the hotel.

The Plough Hotel
Photograph: Supplied

3. The Plough Hotel

Hotels Footscray

Footscray has come a long way, baby. The gentrification of this creative, multicultural hub may be causing friction, but the Plough Hotel is part of the solution, not the problem. Part restaurant, part bar, part hotel, this multitasking space was established way back in 1868, but came back on the scene after a heritage-friendly refurbishment in 2013. Above the restaurant and bar, 11 boutique rooms with private en-suite bathrooms provide a minimalist yet comfortable space for guests to retreat to. With rooms available from $120 per night, this could just be one of Melbourne’s best accommodation deals. 

Time Out tip: Known for serving some of the best steaks in the west, guests can head downstairs to the Plough Hotel restaurant to savour grass fed beef at its finest. Vegetarians are well taken care of too, with plenty of meat-free options on the menu and vegan cheese available on all pizzas.

YHA Melbourne Central
Photograph: Supplied

4. YHA Melbourne Central

Hotels Hostels Melbourne

If you want to stay central, but you don't want to pay the price, you're going to have to settle for a hostel. Thankfully, YHA Melbourne Central is a really nice hostel, if basic. For starters, you can forget sharing a dorm – unless you want to – as here they have private doubles with balconies, en suites and coffeemakers (depending on which price tier you opt for). There's space to hang out on the roof, with open and covered seating areas, there's a cafe/bar in the building and a kitchen/dining area.

Time Out tip: One of the best things about YHA Melbourne Central is the rooftop space, perfect for communal barbecues or chilling in the sun with a good book.

Citadines on Bourke
Photograph: Supplied

5. Citadines on Bourke

Hotels Melbourne

Known as an apart’hotel, Citadines on Bourke’s serviced apartments are ideal for short and long term stays. With fresh, contemporary interiors throughout the property, all apartments feature separate living and dining areas as well as fully-equipped kitchenettes. Perfect for guests who like to feel at home while travelling, Citadines on Bourke boasts a gym, indoor pool, sauna and outdoor sundeck. Favoured by travelling business people who need everything at their fingertips, as well as guests who love the comfy apartment feel, rooms at this property can be snapped up under $170 per night if booking and paying in advance. 

Time Out tip: Located just a few steps from Izakaya Den, Citadines on Bourke guests are in prime position to partake in some cheese and sake matching at one of Melbourne’s best Japanese eateries.

Vibe Savoy
Photograph: Ken Martin

6. Vibe Savoy

Hotels Boutique hotels Melbourne

The fancy pants exterior of this heritage building may look pricey (and with a name like Savoy too), but trust us, it won't break the bank. In fact, the interior looks grand as well; head to toe in art deco chic. There's also an onsite gym, spa, restaurant and 24-hour room service. Plus, the spacious rooms come with tea and coffee making facilities, iPhone/iPod docking stations, Foxtel TV and minibars as standard.

Time Out tip: Only one minute from Southern Cross station, Vibe Savoy is a super location for people keen on checking out the rest of the state via the V/Line network.

Cosmopolitan Hotel
Photograph: Supplied

7. Cosmopolitan Hotel

Hotels Boutique hotels St Kilda

Thanks to a 2016 refurbishment, this stylish bolthole is perfect for making the most of the St Kilda beach locale. With the Palais Theatre, Luna Park and Ackland Street cafes and bars just around the corner, this apartment hotel is close to all the local action. Expect to share the space with guests from all corners of the world, collectively keen on experiencing the bayside charms of St Kilda. 

Time Out tip: A win for groups or families, the roomy two bedroom apartments offer a kitchen, lounge area and plenty of space to spread out for when you feel like staying in for the night.    

The Victoria Hotel
Photograph: Supplied

8. The Victoria Hotel

Hotels Melbourne

A historic Melbourne landmark dating back to the late 1800s, the Victoria Hotel is now under the Rydges umbrella. An onsite bar, restaurant, fitness centre, plunge pool, spa and sauna make this 3.5-star property an incredible find, considering its highly sought-after Little Collins Street location. Attracting down-to-earth types, this hotel’s affable staff make it a pretension-free zone.   

With the Regent TheatreAthenaeum TheatreCapitol Theatre and Melbourne Town Hall all a short walk away, this hotel is a top spot for theatregoers to nab low cost accommodation near some of Melbourne’s leading performance venues.


9. Ibis Melbourne Central

Hotels Melbourne

You won't find many better-located hotels in Melbourne, with Ibis Melbourne Central on Little Lonsdale between Elizabeth and Queen. It's an easy walk to the best of Melbourne, with the Princess Theatre, St Paul's Cathedral, Federation Square and just metres away from all the fantastic restaurants of Hardware Lane. 

There is a gym in the building and a bar and restaurant downstairs. 

Rooms are small, but they are clean and comfortable. 

Time Out Tip: Want lunch nearby? Try five-star Israeli pita joint Miznon.

Four Points by Sheraton Melbourne Docklands
Photograph: Andrew Krucko

10. Four Points by Sheraton Melbourne Docklands

Hotels Docklands

Opened in early 2017, Four Points by Sheraton Melbourne Docklands still has that new hotel feel. Featuring on-trend interiors by leading design firm DKO Architecture, guests can choose rooms with either city or river views. Either way, the Docklands location makes it a superb launching point for anyone wanting to watch a game at Etihad Stadium, catch a gig at Festival Hall, or go for a spin on the Melbourne Star Observation Wheel. 

Time Out tip: Found on the seventh floor of the hotel, the outdoor heated lap pool and deck area offers supreme water views and plenty of outdoor furniture for guests who fancy a sneaky alfresco nap in the afternoon.

Brooklyn Arts Hotel
Photograph: Supplied

11. Brooklyn Arts Hotel

Hotels Boutique hotels Fitzroy

For a completely different experience, stay in a rambling bohemian mansion in achingly trendy Fitzroy. The Brooklyn Arts Hotel’s seven guestrooms and common areas are furnished with the kind of eclectic charm you’d expect from a share-house of vintage enthusiasts in the hotel’s namesake New York borough. Guests can pay a bit more for rooms with private bathrooms and balconies, while all visitors are free to help themselves to a complimentary, European-style continental breakfast. While this hotel may not be a sleek, modern affair, it has plenty of heart and soul. The backyard garden is a sanctuary for guests to chill out in, so visitors can expect to mingle with creative types from all over the world and the owner’s friendly dogs. 

Time Out tip: Gertrude Street is nearby so make a beeline to eat all of the most hyped food in Melbourne. Ricotta hotcakes at Archie’s All Day, southern fried wings at Belle’s Hot Chicken and roast duck at Ricky and Pinky, for starters.

Mantra St Kilda Road
Photograph: Vince Pedulla

12. Mantra St Kilda Road

Hotels Albert Park

With rooms spanning from compact studios to two bedroom executive apartments, this four-star hotel sits just south of the city on St Kilda Road. All rooms feature a kitchenette (or full kitchen) with toaster, microwave, dishwasher and full sized fridge, making this hotel a great choice for people who want to self-cater during a longer stay. Well equipped to deal with business travellers, guests at this hotel range from corporate types travelling from interstate to attend meetings to holidaying families keen to take advantage of the spacious apartments and interconnecting rooms.   

Time Out tip: Planning to cook up a storm during your stay? You’re free to pre-order groceries from Woolworths online for the hotel team to put in your room ready for your arrival.  

Now pick a neighbourhood

Rooftop bar, Curtin House
Photograph: Robert Blackburn

Where to stay in Melbourne

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Take heed of our guide to Melbourne's best neighbourhoods and create your own personalised Melbourne itinerary to match.


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