Best hotels in Melbourne
Opened in 2016, the QT Melbourne has made quite a splash in the city – its 188 rooms can be hard to come by, so if you’ve got your heart set on staying, book in advance. The brand new building has a grand entrance – all soaring ceilings, wood panels and marble. You’ll find a large selection of mostly digital art flickering throughout the hotel, and rooms have an orient-meets-Wall Street vibe, with timber floorboards, glamorous en suites and QT’s “please-don’t-make-me-get-up-I-don’t-want-to-get-up” gel-topped beds. Imagine a millennial Patrick Bateman's apartment, without the hidden bodies. Book into a suite and you could find yourself in a freestanding bathtub, set on an enclosed pavilion overlooking one of Melbourne’s hipper rooftop bars. As far as people watching goes, it’s an extreme experience. This being a posh joint, you’ll find high spec designer tech, free Wi-Fi and fresh new release movies, with valet parking, 24-hour room service and an on-site gym the cherries on top of this fashionable Melbourne sundae.
Time Out tip: The QT is directly opposite one of Time Out’s favourite restaurants and wine bars, Embla. Don’t leave town without nabbing a table.
This sleek urban sanctuary offers all guests the VIP treatment. You can choose between upscale rooms, lofts and apartments all at different price points – but it’s the world-class facilities that set Crown Metropol apart. Zoning out in the infinity pool on the 27th floor is a must, as is enjoying a cocktail or two at the 28 Skybar Lounge, which boasts sweeping city views. Crown is also home to many of the city’s best restaurants by world-famous chefs, including Heston Blumenthal’s Dinner by Heston and Neil Perry’s Rockpool Bar & Grill.
Time Out tip: If you’re staying here during the week, then take advantage of the ‘Mid Week Indulgence’ package at what could easily be Melbourne’s most luxurious day spa. For $200, you’ll receive a 60-minute relaxation massage and a two-course lunch at Crown’s French restaurant Bistro Guillaume.
Whether you’re staying in the cosy studio or splurging on a penthouse suite, fun is front and centre at this hip hotel inspired by Melbourne’s laneway culture. With interesting touches like chalkboards, pinball machines and colourful murals throughout the property, there is nothing generic about this hotel, which is well-suited to travellers who want to make the most of the enviable location right in the thick of it on Little Bourke Street. Of all the extras on offer, the free mini bar is the obvious winner.
Time Out tip: You’re staying in the middle of Chinatown, so why not treat yourself to a dumpling feast? Veer off the main strip and visit HuTong, where you’ll find the best xiao long bao (Shanghainese dumplings filled with pork and soup) in town.
The Art Series Hotel Group’s South Yarra offering has 224 luxurious rooms ideal for short and long term stays. Stepping to the lobby feels more like entering an art gallery than a hotel; a striking frog sculpture (by veteran Australian artist John Olsen, of course) sets the scene, and a curated collection of Olsen’s bright and beautiful paintings are dotted throughout the property. If you’re going all-out, then you can’t go past the John Olsen Penthouse, which features an outdoor spa, timber dining table, Bose sound system, gas open fireplace, sunlounge, barbecue and stunning views of colourful city lights reflected in the nearby Yarra River. Chapel Street’s restaurants are at your doorstep, but you don’t need to venture further than Two Wrongs at the ground floor of the hotel for a high-end dining experience in a relaxed setting.
Time Out tip: Feel like watching a movie? Resist the urge to stay in and head across the road to Palace Cinema Como. This plush cinema complex screens big new releases as well as arthouse films from all over the world.
Located within a hulking 1938 building on the busy CBD hotspot that is Flinders Lane, the Adelphi Hotel is a nice landing spot for those who value edgy design, location and first-rate service. The Adelphi is a uniquely styled boutique hotel, from its signature zig-zagged floor right down to the ubiquitous lolly jars in every room. With only 34 rooms, the Adelphi can afford to be a little playful in design. Kitschy lamps, furry rugs and not-very-functional-but-still-cute couches line the corners of rooms, with the centrepiece king-sized bed a comfy standout. The brightly hued rooms also come with 40-inch flat screens (with unlimited movies), spacious bathrooms with rainfall shower heads and minibars full of free snacks and non-alcoholic drinks. We’d be remiss if we didn’t talk about the rooftop. The Adelphi’s rooftop pool is probably one of the most photographed pools in Melbourne, thanks to its cantilevering, glass-bottom, which juts out over Flinders Lane. It's open from 6am most days if you're one for an early-morning swim, otherwise Friday evening is perfect for a swim and an after-work cocktail.
Time Out tip: Do keep in mind that you are on a bustling CBD street and noise travels remarkably well up those cobblestone laneways. Bring your earplugs if you want a solid night's sleep.
The Cullen – located two minutes’ walk from buzzing Chapel Street – was the first creation by the Art Series Hotel Group, whose hotels blend the visions of some of Australia’s most influential modern and contemporary artists with clever design and seamless service. Every room of the hotel, from the compact studio suite to the sprawling penthouse, pays tribute to Sydney artist Adam Cullen, thanks to a large private collection of his work. The option of hiring a Smart Car, bicycle, pram or scooter makes getting around easy, whether you’re exploring Melbourne’s trendy inner south or venturing further afield.
Time Out tip: In the last two years, the neighbouring suburb of Windsor has become one of the city’s hottest dining strips. Head north on Chapel Street and you’ll find top-notch bars and restaurants, including Malaysian eatery Hawker Hall, Mexican favourite Fonda, and Jungle Boy – a secret tiki bar located behind a sandwich shop, accessed through the door of a fake fridge (so Melbourne!).
As Australia’s first carbon neutral hotel, the inner-city Alto Hotel is the ideal place for a low-impact city stay. Not only is 100 per cent of all electricity used throughout the property generated from renewable sources, but guests can access complimentary recharging stations for electric vehicles and there’s even a rooftop beehive supplying honey for breakfast. With simple yet stylish rooms and all the mod-cons you’d expect from a four-star boutique hotel, the Alto Hotel proves that going green doesn’t mean sacrificing on quality.
Time Out tip: Take advantage of Alto’s relaxation room, which features automated massage chairs that are free to use.
Thanks to a 2017 renovation, the Adina Apartment Hotel Melbourne is now home to some of the largest apartments in the city – and yes, we’re including the apartments Melburnians actually live in this unscientific-survey too. These three bedroom apartments, on the hotel’s upper floors, are perfect for families or group travel, and they’re surprisingly affordable. If you’re not rolling with a crew, you’ll be just as at home in the one bedroom suites, which feature large, comfy couches, full size dining tables, separate bedrooms and full kitchens – all decked with fresh, modern furniture. Closets have plenty of space, and unlike an apartment, you’ll have access to nice things like 24-hour reception, free wifi and room service. Down on the 5th floor, there’s a very pretty indoor lap pool, with an outside terrace area nearby for sunning off afterwards. Down in the lobby, with its comforting gas fireplace, you’re likely to run into business travellers and holidaying couples and groups. The location is excellent – you’re a three minute walk from Hardware Lane, and some of Little Bourke Street’s best eateries, and the city’s major shopping highlights are just as close. You’re flanked by tram stops less than one minute away from the hotel, but because it’s not situated right on a tram-line, you don’t have to listen to the rattle and clang. This is the kind of place to stay when you want to feel part of the city, not apart from it – but if you do just want to chill out on the couch, cook yourself some dinner and watch Netflix, you’ve got every amenity you need to do so.
Time Out tip: The Adina Apartment Hotel is 18 storeys high, which means the upper levels get some truly killer views. If you want to really look out over Melbourne, request a room with altitude on the building’s south east corner.
Design aficionados will love the muted tones and sleek monochrome lines at this South Melbourne boutique bolthole that is equal parts hotel, bar and bistro. Only a quick tram ride from the city centre, Coppersmith – located in the leafy streets of South Melbourne – is the perfect choice for visitors who prefer a neighbourhood setting to being in the middle of the city. The rooms feature incredibly soft beds, heavenly pillows, flat screen televisions and recordable cable TV. Enjoying a cool beer on the rooftop is a must.
Time Out tip: Coppersmith is five minutes’ walk to Albert Park Lake; an expansive blue lake flanked with a five-kilometre walking track. Take a stroll as the sun sets over the city and spot the black swans sitting on the banks. Just don’t swim in it.
Dripping in old-world charm and the glamour of a bygone era, this grand dame is really something special. The décor here is understated and refined, with tasteful furnishings, soaring ceilings and pretty leadlight accents rather than the cold and tacky flashiness of some 'luxury' hotels. The staff are warm and attentive, happy to help with everything from nearby bar recommendations to forgotten toothbrushes. The rooms themselves are elegant, with marble bathrooms and soft linens and towels. If you really want to splash out, the 122-square-metre Victorian Suite is grand and elegant, with a dining room, separate lounge and second bedroom. Huge windows on both sides make the suite feel more like an upper-class 19th-century pied-â-terre than a hotel room. Modern amenities like two LCD televisions, excellent water pressure and luxury bath products don't interfere with the 19th-century vibe, but they will make your stay extremely comfortable.
Time Out tip: Even if you don't want to stay at the Windsor, do make sure you drop in for afternoon tea, which is served every day of the week.
Merging old-world elegance with modern amenities and service, Hotel Lindrum is a slice of Melbourne heritage wrapped up in a seriously luxurious hotel stay. Once a former billiard centre, Hotel Lindrum’s 59 rooms feature original windows, wool carpet and Samsung Smart LCD televisions. Enjoying a prime location on Flinders Street, Hotel Lindrum is surrounded by Melbourne’s best food and wine hotspots, yet the hotel’s own Back Bar has everything a discerning hotel guest could ever need with leather armchairs, a fireplace and full-size billiard table.
Time Out tip: Hotel Lindrum is located a short walk from Melbourne’s sports precinct, making it the perfect choice for visitors keen on catching an AFL game at the MCG or a tennis match at Rod Laver Arena.
With exceptionally beautiful rooms and intuitive service delivered by attentive staff, this five-star hotel has all the high-end trappings you’d expect from digs sandwiched between Wolford, Armani and Prada. Here you’re literally on top of the high end shopping and fine dining restaurants at the “Paris end” of Collins Street. Guests can expect panoramic city views from floor-to-ceiling windows, modern furnishings and king sized beds. Cap off your experience by lording over the city with a Martini in the Atrium Bar on the 35th floor.
Time Out tip: Spend an afternoon snacking on delicate éclairs in Sofi’s Lounge.
This Southbank mainstay has all the essential ingredients needed to conjure up an extraordinary hotel experience. There are those incredible city skyline and Yarra River views from the Deluxe River Corner Room, the polished interiors of the sprawling Chairman Suite and the indoor 15-metre pool inside the Langham’s blissful Chuan Spa. Cap that off with a visit to the award-winning buffet at the Melba fine dining restaurant and it’s easy to see how the Langham earned every single one of its five stars.
Time Out tip: Tea sommeliers are most definitely a thing – and you’ll meet them at the Langham’s elegant high tea, where house-made pastries are served on Wedgewood tea ware.
This Flinders Street Station-adjacent hotel is a short walk to some of Melbourne’s most notable laneways and best bars, restaurants and boutiques. That said, make sure you save some time to experience everything DoubleTree has to offer, including cocktails in the Lobby Bar and grass-fed steak at the in-house eatery Platform 270. There’s also a fitness room for those virtuous types who can’t bear the thought of missing a day of exercise. After a long day of making merry, sink into the hotel’s specially designed Sweet Dreams bed for a perfect night’s sleep.
Time Out tip: Take the underpass under Flinders Street Station and grab a seat at Arbory Bar and Eatery, which stretches 120 metres along the riverbank. On Thursday and Friday evenings, the after-work crowd snack on $2 oysters served fresh from a cart.
This designer boutique hotel is housed in a building that was once a prestige car showroom. While the modern fit-out hits all the right notes, the Royce still carries an understated historical elegance, with a grand staircase, ornate ceilings and statement chandelier evoking a sense of theatrical drama in the lobby. Whether staying in the Standard Room or the Royal Suite, guests are assured five-star service every step of the way.
Time Out tip: No visit to Melbourne is complete without brunch. Luckily, you’re five minutes’ walk from one of the best cafés in town, Kettle Black. Their famous ricotta hotcakes make the wait for a table worthwhile.
More of Melbourne's best hotels
We all have different preferences when it comes to hotels – perhaps you're a fan of staying right in the middle of the action; maybe you're happy to chill out in a boutique hotel in a cute neighbourhood. Whatever kind of vacation (or staycation) you're after, we've got you covered.
Living that luxe lifestyle?
Spending a night in a luxurious five-star hotel is a treat that everyone should experience at least once in their lifetime. Thankfully, you don't need to leave Melbourne to find world-class accommodation in the heart of the city.
Or try an Airbnb
It’s a given that Melbourne is Australia’s cultural capital (sorry Sydney!), so with such a wealth of cool galleries, restaurants and events, why stay in a chain hotel when you could rent one of the best Airbnbs in Melbourne?