Advice on Melbourne hotels

Jan 3rd, 2003, 02:44 PM
  #1  
Mark
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Advice on Melbourne hotels

Planning to finish off 3 wks holiday in Melbourne.(First time in Oz, starting with a week in Sydney and then touring NSW/VIC for 10 days.) Couple of days in Melbourne center, thinking of the Astoria City Travel Inn, Spencer Street, then a few days winding down in St Kilda, the Novotel on The Esplanade.
Anybody have any experience with these 2 hotels, beter suggestions, comments on the locations? All advice most welcome.
 
Jan 3rd, 2003, 06:08 PM
  #2  
Graeme
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The Astoria is basic but ok.Location is average but acceptable.Free City Circle tram(trolley) passes door.Novetel is in great location with trams at door.Colorful locals but mainly harmless.Easy access to city.Overall reasonable choices.There are plenty of other hotels but your suggestions are perfectly acceptable.
 
Jan 3rd, 2003, 09:33 PM
  #3  
David
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Mark, If it were me I'd stay at the Novotel St Kilda. An easy tram ride to the city, the Novotel is right on the Bay and a terrific spot.

David
 
Jan 3rd, 2003, 10:30 PM
  #4  
Mark
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Thanks guys.
Would appreciate your opinion Graeme, others welcome, on a better city area. I'm looking at the Astoria because of medium budget and the fact that it's got a pool.
Was also thinking of the Novotel St Kilda for the whole period, and taking a tram to the city, like David says, but it's partially unavailable. Who can recommend another hotel in St Kilda, within walking distance from the beach?
 
Jan 3rd, 2003, 11:44 PM
  #5  
Kay
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Mark,
Spencer St is not the greatest area, it used to be a bit seedy but may have changed, I don't get into the city as often as I used to. You could try the Ibis hotels, there are 2 I think in the city and they are budget priced. One is near the Vic Market.
There is a Novotel on Collins St which would be fine, not sure of cost though, there is a good site called www.jasons.com.au where you can put in your criteria, such as a pool and see what they come up with.
There is a B&B in St Kilda called (?) Robinsons by the Sea which has a very good reputation but again not sure of cost. If they are too dear, I'm sure they'd recommend somewhere local for you.
One other site which has an Australian travel forum where you might get some ideas, is www.travelmate.com.au
Kay
 
Jan 4th, 2003, 02:22 AM
  #6  
Mark
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Thanks Kay, for your useful comments.
Robinsons (www.robinsonsbythesea.com.au/) sounds first class but also discovered Olembia on Barkly St in St Kilda (www.olembia.com.au/), which is more in the budget bracket and looks like fun. Their site also referred to other small hostels and Tims Place (www.timsplace.com.au/) in the Grampians caught my eye. Wanted to visit the Grampians anyway, so this was an added bonus.
Back to St Kilda, I've also found the Cosmopolitan hotel on Carlisle Street, St (www.cosmopolitanhotel.com.au).
If anybody has opinions on any of the above, I'd much appreciate them.
 
Jan 4th, 2003, 11:50 AM
  #7  
Mark
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Also looking at Bayview on the Park on Queens Rd (www.bayviewonthepark.com.au). Bit further from the beach but well equipped.
BTW, what's the beach at St Kilda like?
 
Jan 4th, 2003, 02:16 PM
  #8  
Graeme
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The Bayview is in a good distance from the beach and would not recommend it for a tourist.As Kay says, Spencer St is not the greatest area but it has improved in recent years.Have a look at Holiday Inn Melbourne,well located and probably not too expensive.
 
Jan 4th, 2003, 02:51 PM
  #9  
Aussie
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Without a second thought stay at The Novotel... room with a water view.
Take the tram into the City. Hope on the free City Circle tram & get an idea of what you wish to see & where it is first off.
You will enjoy the rides plus know you will not have to be in Spencer Street come night time.
Enjoy the lovely walks along the Esplanade to Station Pier. Drool over the cake shops in Ackland Street, enjoy a $6.90. meal of dips & felefel balls & salad further down Ackland Stret.
Enduldge in a romantic dinner at Donavans...
Don't stay in Spencer Street.
I have stayed at both hotels.
The Astoria City Travel Inn about 5 years ago.. only stayed there because it was around the corner from a course I was doing for a couple of days....it was okay just...
Stayed at the Novotel... great... you can't compare the two.. as different as chalk & cheese. I have a friend who stayed at the Cosmopolitan a couple of weeks ago who said it was quite good.. she got a good deal through quickbeds.com (I think.) $99.00.aust. for 1 bedroom apartment.
It is quite close to Ackland Street, but has no views of the water.(which is a must for me in St.Kilda.)
I walked around Melbourne last week & thought this city centre has become very grotty. It neads a real lift.
However having said that the Federation Square, Southbank, New Quay Docklands area have taken over as the places in the City to go to.
Take a ferry ride from St.Kilda to Williamstown.
Take a ferry from Federation Square to New Quay, stopping at the stops along the way.
Enjoy our cafe culture.
 
Jan 4th, 2003, 04:50 PM
  #10  
Kay
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Hi Mark,
I would definitely choose St Kilda over anywhere on Queens Rd. The beach at St Kilda is OK, we have some truly beautiful beaches in Australia and this isn't one of them, but it's fine for sitting on the sand and having a dip. It is, after all, very close to a large city. St Kilda is very popular with backpackers, it sounds like you've found that out with your research! It also has a reputation for drugs and prostitution but we've never had a problem there, have always found it very lively with a mainly young crowd. Acland St is full of the most fantastic cake shops as well as cafes etc. There is a very good craft market on the upper esplanade on Sundays.
The Grampians is one of our favourite places in Victoria, great for wildlife and bushwalks. Tim's place is right on the main road in Halls Gap. If you can, do the walk at dusk which starts from behind the Visitors Centre, we saw lots of kangaroos and wallabies and emus. A good, interesting hike (if you're reasonably fit) is the Wonderland Walk and on to the Pinnacle. Takes about 2 hours, take some water with you, but well worth it for the view at the top.
Kay
 
Jan 5th, 2003, 12:55 AM
  #11  
Mark
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Once again, much appreciate your contributions. It's fun waking up in Europe and seeing what you guys have come up with while we were sleeping.
The Holiday Inn Melbourne looks great Graeme, but at $200 a bit more than I'm prepared to pay.
Many thanks for your various tips Aussie. The Novotel does look wonderful but seems unavailable before Feb 18, and we want to stay 15-20, so I'm looking for another place either for 15-18 or for the whole period. As there doesn't seem to be any other property close to the beach (or is there?), I'll probably go for the Cosmopolitan.
Kay, thanks for your thoughts on St Kilda (looking forward to the cakes...) and the Grampians. We're both in our early fifties and pretty fit as town folk go, so the walk to the Pinnacle should be in the 'no worries' department.
 
Jan 6th, 2003, 03:07 AM
  #12  
Graeme
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I am sure you can do better than $200 per night at Holiday Inn Flinders
 
Jan 7th, 2003, 09:53 PM
  #13  
marg
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Ramada have just opened a hotel in Flinders Street so you may be able to get a good rate there. There is a budget hotel in Elizabeth Street run by the YMCA. Another hotel which always sounds reasonably priced is the Ibis.
If you are looking for budget accommodation at the Grampians, there is a very nice-looking new YHA hostel there. Also you could try the Parkgate Resort (caravan park, flats, cabins etc in a very pleasant setting 10 minutes walk from town). Their website is www.grampians.com
Incidentally, if you want to look at some Australian art, try the new (and free) Ian Potter Gallery at Federation Square.
Hope you enjoy your holiday.
 
Jan 8th, 2003, 11:57 AM
  #14  
Mark
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Thanks Marg,
for the additional tips.
Ramada looks fine but have now contacted the Novotel St Kilda direct and they DO have rooms, as opposed to the web agents. Bit dearer at $168 for std non bay view but hey, you only live once.
 
Jan 8th, 2003, 10:45 PM
  #15  
Deb
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Mark,
My favourite hotel for both value, luxury and friendliness is the Royce Hotel. It has won the best boutique hotel (5*) in Melbourne. It's about a kilometer from the city centre down St. Kilda Road, right on the tram line. No beach view, but a wonderful hotel. It goes for about $80US. Check out roycehotels.com.au (maybe without an "s"...not sure)
 
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