Hotels in Brisbane, Gold Coast, Sydney and Melbourne

Old Apr 8th, 2003, 05:22 PM
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Hotels in Brisbane, Gold Coast, Sydney and Melbourne

Dear all:<BR><BR>I am planning to visit these places in Sept 03, and would want to pick a more comfortable, conveniently located and would be above average priced hotel that is good for my money in each place. I¡¦ve the following hotels short-listed, please give your comments:<BR><BR>Brisbane: Conrad Treasury, Sheraton, Stamford<BR>Gold Coast: Break-free Pacific View, Sheraton, Phoenician Resort Apartments<BR>Sydney: Four Points by Sheraton, Le Meridien, Merchant Court Hotel, Westin<BR>Melbourne: Sheraton Towers, Crown Towers, Westin, Le Meridien<BR><BR>Many thanks<BR>Daisy<BR>
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Old Apr 8th, 2003, 11:02 PM
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I can speak for Melbourne. Your choices are all very good, I would rate Le Meridien a bit less than the other 3. (I have stayed at all of them.)<BR>Crown Towers (part of Casino complex.) &amp; Sheraton Towers are quite close to one another on Southbank, which seems to have become the centre of Melbourne Cafe's &amp; entertainment.<BR>The Westin is right in the C.B.D. a short walk to Southgate.<BR>I have to admit we stay at Crown Towers...love their Spa... be pampered. I would also rate The Park Hyatt with the Sheraton &amp; Westin but it is a bit away from everything (very peaceful though) So I guess its where you can get the best deals....www.wotif.com<BR>is worth a look to see what prices are.
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Old Apr 9th, 2003, 05:15 AM
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Hi, Daisyho!<BR>Your Sydney short-listed hotels are all a bit too up-market for me to know much about, but I can tell you that on this forum in the recent past there has been a very complimentary report on the Westin (from the outside it looks very swank, and it has been built on the site of the old Australia Post buildings adjacent to the GPO, so it is the absolute &quot;centre&quot; of Sydney), and a couple of very uncomplimentary ones about the Four Points, which was described by one poster as recently as today as &quot;a bit run down&quot; (certainly its location is, at best, fair to poor).
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Old Apr 9th, 2003, 05:39 AM
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Know 2 of the 4 in Sydney. We stayed at Westin for our wedding night (A$295 for deluxe room) after booking Meridien on a great deal from the net- gave that to my in laws. Both are very nice hotels, Meridien's room style can be seen on internet, but we really loved the rooms of the Westin - better in real life than internet. But you do want to like cream as dominant room colour . We preferred the modern rooms in the tower to heritage rooms (which are more expensive). Lots of modern rooms have very cool glass wall for bathroom so can watch TV in the tub. Fantastic breakfast at Westin and service was great - staff really seem quite proud to work there. Lobby area of Westin is a little colder feel than say Sheraton on Park. Bit too office like. 4 Points is Sheraton's cheaper chain, so would not be comparable. Merchant Court is run by Raffles chain so should be good - internet suggested to me comparable hotel to Meridien adn seemed to be good size rooms. <BR>We got best rate for Westin by seeing the reception personally (not their web site)- so check out what the best net price on offer then perhaps ring them up and see if they can offer it cheaper.<BR>All these hotels are not harbour view hotels - although you can get some harbour view depending on how high up you are. For those you pay more for your money.(Hyatt is most expensive in Sydney). ANA has great views and similar price to Westin but I think room quality is not as good. So depends on how important the view is.<BR>Alan it does sound like that you like to check out hotels - do check out the Westin, would be interested to see your view.
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Old Apr 9th, 2003, 12:05 PM
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In preference order for Melbourne - Westin, Crown Towers, Sheraton Towers and I'd not bother with La meridien. You could also look at the Park Hyatt - it's only a 1 minute walk from the free City Circle tram and in a fabulous location.
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Old Apr 9th, 2003, 02:00 PM
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Re Park Hyatt Melbourne. The location is very nice, park type area. However Mark has mentioned the city circle tram. Please be aware this doesn't run all the time, I think from memory it may stop around 7.p.m. It is a nice quite walk to China Town but quite a walk to the centre of Melbourne shopping area.<BR>It has an amazing 8 level cafe.<BR>The rooms are very nice but you will be very luck to get a room with any sort of view.
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Old Apr 9th, 2003, 06:07 PM
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Thank you all for comments on Sydney and Melbourne¡¦s hotels. <BR><BR>A very comfortable king-sized bed and a powerful shower is the most important thing to me and my husband. So it seems that the room of Westin in both Sydney and Melbourne should be very comfortable. The next thing is can you all suggest which website offers the best rate, or how to get the best rate in town. You know, the hotels that I mentioned are not cheap, so I would really want to get a very nice deal. <BR><BR>For those who know about Melbourne, is the hotel with the harbour view a must such that I should prefer Crown Towers to hotels in CBD,e.g. Westin.<BR><BR>BTW, you all seemed to be very reserved about Four Points. In fact, I lived there in my last trip to Sydney last year¡K¡K¡K¡K..I didn¡¦t find it too poor perhaps they upgraded me to a suite which gave me a good impression¡K.In any case, I would want to try other hotels in the town..<BR><BR>Looking forward to your suggestion again,<BR>Daisy<BR><BR><BR>
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Old Apr 10th, 2003, 12:14 AM
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Harbour Views in Melbourne ..we can only dream. However the Westin will have very limit views of anything except St Pauls Cathedral (if you pay the extra $$$ for this) &amp; Flinders Street Railway Station.<BR>Crown Towers will give you the choice of Yarra River/ city or Westgate bridge/bay. Both are very nice at night.<BR>Both have Kingsize beds (a must for us also) The showers are best at Park Hyatt. When I say this there is nothing wrong with showers at Westin or Crown. Try www.wotif.com<BR>for Crown. You will have to go Westin direct.Good luck
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Old Apr 10th, 2003, 12:47 AM
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Second wotif - but problem there - it only offers 2 weeks in advance, and Westin is not there as referred to. Otherwise just do the normal internet trawl as there are variations between different hotels and web sites -not one that will always be the cheapest. Just go for one that you can cancel with minimal cost.
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Old Apr 10th, 2003, 09:41 AM
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we stayed at the 4pts Sherator Darling Harbor and thought it was great. We used points and they were incredibly cheap!<BR><BR>Room was spacious...had a nice big single bed- can't recall but I believe it was a KING and had nice neutral decor and black and white photographs by a local photographer. <BR><BR>location was pretty convenient, staff was nice....<BR><BR>had a view of the harbour<BR><BR>marble bath.....
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Old Apr 10th, 2003, 02:36 PM
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I'm yet to find the Westin on any of the discount sites (please post if you find one!) - in fact most of those hotels rarely post discount rates with outside sites - but they do often have packages on their own sites. I'd agree with the best shower being the Park Hyatt - it's sensational - but they're all good.
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Old Apr 11th, 2003, 03:13 AM
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I've searched on this website which they claimed they offer AUD 265 for a Westin room. Please do check, since I never really use this to book a hotel, if you do so, plesae let us know your experience.<BR>http://www.hotelclub.net<BR><BR>Daisy<BR><BR>
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Old Apr 11th, 2003, 01:51 PM
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I had seen this site some weeks ago when booking accom. in Western Australia. I was very tempted with the deal being offered however I did phone the hotel concerned &amp; they had never heard of hotel.net so I didn't book through them of course.<BR>The other way of looking at it is the person at the hotel had no idea ! A gamble I wasn't prepared to take.<BR>I look forward to hearing some succesful reports on Hotel.net....Daisyho ring the hotel direct or e.mail them &amp; ask if they have heard of them !<BR>Good luck
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Old Apr 15th, 2003, 09:49 PM
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AussieJo:<BR><BR>I just found out that www.accomline.com.au is another name of www.hotelclub.net, this perhaps explains why staff of Westin didn't recognise this site. But in any case, the price accomline or hotelclub offers for Westin is no better than that of Westin. People say accomline is competitive<BR><BR>Daisy
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Old Apr 17th, 2003, 04:50 AM
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My choice in Sydney for price, location and ambience is definitely the Renaissance.
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Old Apr 17th, 2003, 12:51 PM
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Hi Daisy<BR><BR>For the Gold Coast it would really depend on what your interests are. The Sheraton Mirage is on the spit and over the road from the shopping arcade which fronts onto the broadwater. Its close to Seaworld and on beach front - though its not a patrolled beach - patrol is not too far though. Very nice hotel but you would need to get in your car to do any other shopping etc. <BR>The Phoenician is at Broadbeach Oasis centre with many restaurants, outdoor cafe's and the like. Monorail to the Casino and walk to the largest shopping centre on the coast at Pacific Fair. Lots of alternatives for transport to anywhere and is only about 100 mtrs to the patrolled and very nice beach. <BR>I don't know about the other one but expect that it may be in Surfer's Paradise - only for 'Asian tourists or those in the 18 - 25 yr bracket. If being out of the &quot;hub&quot; is Ok then you could try the Hyatt at Sanctuary Cove which is a lovely place to stay in as much as Sanctuary Cove is lovely and if you like golf thats a bonus. Also Magic Mountain resort is particularly nice and has great views and is a nice complex with self-contained accommodation.
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Old Apr 28th, 2003, 05:49 AM
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Hi Daisyho,
We just got back from our honeymoon in Australia last week, and we stayed at two of the hotels on your list.

In Sydney, we had four nights at the Merchant Court hotel. I booked this on Wotif, just three days before we left Ireland to travel to Sydney, and by that stage I was pretty tied up with wedding plans and didn't have time to think that much about it. I'd been watching Wotif quite closely however, for a couple of months, and when this Merchant Court deal including breakfast was offered at just over AU$200 per night, I figured it would do okay.

Overall this was a good hotel. We arrived from an early morning flight, they got us a room by 11am, although with hindsight I wonder whether that early check-in lost us the chance of a nicer room. Our room was modern and nice, but small and character-less, and certainly not as nice as the pictures on Wotif or their own website. Since it was the start of our honeymoon and we'd just come from a night at the K Club, Ireland's most amazing hotel, we were a little disappointed with this. On the plus side, the breakfast was very good. The hotel caters for a lot of Asian visitors, even the buffet breakfast contained everything for a huge range of tastes. I think on reflection the Merchant Court is a more suitable hotel for business people just passing through, although it's modern, clean, with good food, and the price was right.

We also spent one night at the Sheraton Mirage in Surfers Paradise. I think this is the Sheraton on the Gold Coast which you're referring to? We hadn't booked this in advance, but checked in at the end of a long day when we had travelled as far as we could go. Because we had a couple of other fairly nice hotels planned for later in the trip, we didn't want to spend a fortune this night, but the best rate the Sheraton could offer was $260, and this was room only. A bit of a sting. Once we got over that, the rest was lovely. The rooms were great (ours was just Garden View, but had a walk--out patio looking over a little pool where ducks swam, surrounded by tropical vegetation. The outdoor pool is marvellous, and there were people sunbathing from early the morning we were there. There's access to the beach through a private path from the hotel, the beach is great. For food we were recommended the seafood buffet in the main restaurant, but I have to confess we dodged across the road to McDonalds. We also left without breakfast so can't recommend that. A classy hotel, if you could get lucky with a good rate. I was glad we weren't staying longer than a day on the Gold Coast, as all the high-rises could become a bit much.

Hope this helps. If you are interested in going North of Brisbane to the Sunshine Coast, I can recommend a great place in Noosa, called Noosa Blue, this is an apartment complex with many hotel facilities. The accommodation is top quality, we had a penthouse for AU$175 per night, this included a rooftop garden with a spa pool and barbeque, and views to the beach on one side and the river estuary on the other. The quality of this accommodation was equal to any of the 5 star hotels we stayed in.

Good luck,

Anna
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Old Apr 28th, 2003, 01:23 PM
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How unfortunate, AnnaG, that you stayed only in the middle of the Gold Coast and did not look past the high rise hotels and discover what the Gold Coast really has to offer.
The high rise hotels are only the infrastructure to house tourists who look past the hotels to the magnificent hinterland, the wonderful waterways and the extensive islands and beaches.
I know this because I live in the hinterland of the Gold Coast and it would take a long time to discover all the area has to offer along its some 60 miles of coastline into northern NSW.
I am writing this because I don't want daisyho to get the wrong idea about this area as it has more to offer than what you would expect at first glance. But make sure that you look past the high rise hotels and the tourist areas. Ask locals where to go and what to see - they will direct you to the best possible places. There are some 500 restaurants on the Gold Coast and heaven knows how many hotels - probably as many as the large cities so you have a wonderful cross section to choose from. I booked my friends into the ANA 5 star hotel over the Easter break at $130 Au which included breakfast and views. If you want a quiet location then that is achievable as well.
In all instances in Australia 'ASK A LOCAL' and you will find that most people are willing to go out of their way to help you have a wonderful time.
By the way I have never heard of the Merchant Court in Sydney nor have I seen anything about it on this forum so always ask us - preferably the Sydney experts for their ideas. Most certainly use Wotif but only when you have checked if the hotel is a good one.
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Old Apr 28th, 2003, 02:52 PM
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Liz,
Just for information - the Merchant Court Hotel belongs to the Raffles chain and was built as part of the new Grace Bros Department Store development in Sydney's CBD only a few years ago. Very much catering to the Asian tourist market and business trade I would think.
What a pity Anna ended up there with everything else there is to offer, especially on her honeymoon!
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Old Apr 28th, 2003, 05:28 PM
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Prue, Is the Merchant Court part of the Grace Hotel itself? I have stayed at the Grace and it is ok at best. I was a tad peeved with the service on arrival and the room was about the size of a phone box. However when my daughter stayed there for business her room was magnificent and about the size of a small apartment. I prefer the hotels with a bit of atmosphere to them i.e. the Observatory, The Russell, The Victoria hotel in Potts Point etc. to the usual run of the mill/ always the same chain hotels but if you are after a 5 star hotel with views then there must be a whole lot which are better than the Merchant Court and their ilk.
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