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klangner May 27th, 2004 10:39 AM

Sydney/Melbourne Hotels
Hello! We are travelling to both Melbourne and Sydney in September 04. I would be grateful for any advice on choosing between the following hotels:

Sydney- Rydges Jamison, The Grace Hotel

Melbourne- Park Hyatt (is there another hotel more highly recommended?)

Looking for great location- close to harbour/restaurants/sites, upscale but great value (100-200 USD)

Thank you for your input!

Judy_in_Calgary May 27th, 2004 10:51 AM

I've never been into the Park Hyatt, but it's in an excellent location. I think the eastern end of downtown Melbourne (where the Park Hyatt is) or Southbank, across the Yarra River from downtown, are convenient areas in which to stay, in that they're close to restaurants and places of interest.

Alan May 27th, 2004 03:21 PM

Hi, klangner!

If you haven't locked yourself in to the choices above, may I make another suggestion for the Sydney choice (not that there's anything wrong with your two). Try the Russell in North George St. Tiny, quaint, traditional, nothing like the other hotels, and the best location in Sydney. Here's a website to check it out:

Sometimes you can find unbelievable deals on this hotel ($AUD116 a double, a few weeks ago!) on

Peteralan May 27th, 2004 04:02 PM

Hi klangner. The Grace Hotel is very centrally located and looks quite nice. From memory it was renovated about ten or so years ago from an office block where I used to work (it is significantly better looking now!). Not sure how it rates but I am unfamiliar with Rydges Jamison. Good luck!

AussieJo May 27th, 2004 10:33 PM

The Park Hyatt is lovely however it is quite removed from the main city area a 8 minute walk will get you into the c.b.d. China Town is the closest & Hard rock cafe. for eating.

KayF May 28th, 2004 12:22 AM

I agree that Park Hyatt is not as close to things to do/see as other 5 star hotels. The Park Hyatt is fairly new and is in a safe area but if it was me, I would prefer either Sheraton Southgate or Crown Towers (this is the casino) or Crown Promenade which is brand new and connected to Crown Towers by an airbridge. The Sheraton and Crown are on the Yarra River and 5 min walk into the CBD. There are loads of restaurants and cafes in this area as well as some upmarket shops and cinemas. Most shopping, including department stores, are in the CBD. This area along the Yarra is very popular and you can catch water taxis to different destinations. There is a lot more to do and see in this area. I have seen rooms at Crown and they are very nice, some with fantastic city views.

By the way, if you are keen on theatre, The Producers (Mel Brooks show from New York but with an Australian cast) is on in Melbourne at the moment, at the Princess Theatre which is quite close to the Park Hyatt. We saw the show recently and it was fabulous. You can buy tickets through Ticketek or from the theatre. I would suggest booking well ahead.

AussieJo May 28th, 2004 11:53 PM

I agree with Kayf. I have stayed in all the hotels & have to say Park Hyatt would rate number1. Crown we have stayed at often as we like to be close to all the cafe's etc. The Sheraton's rooms are smaller then Crown standard room. (we have stayed in three grades at Crown) A corner 1 bedroom suite is the best.
Promenade is down scale like a lot of new hotels very minimalistic but it usually comes at a pretty good price. Travellodge is down scale again but in the same area of town... across the road from the sheraton & a short 5 minute walk to Yhe Crown complex. If you want a quite area with park near by go for Park Hyatt. Action full on head to the other end of town.

anzbound May 29th, 2004 03:44 AM

I see no mention of the Observatory in this thread. We were planning on staying there in December. Has anyone stayed there? Any critiques on the Observatory?

Alan May 29th, 2004 06:03 AM

The Observatory hotel is an upmarket establishment on the far side of the Rocks, with quiet Kent Street on one side, and a view of Darling Harbour and Sydney's west on the other. It's close to Sydney Harbour, but I don't think it would have any views of that harbour... if it boasts "harbour views", ask them which harbour they are talking about, and remember (before you pay extra for a room with a harbour view) that Darling Harbour is nothing at all in character like beautiful Sydney Harbour with its bridge, its Opera House and its white sailboats on the blue waters. Darling Harbour is a tawdry collection of freeways, monstrously Las-Vegas-y hotels, a casino, an Imax complex, a Convention Centre, and a dismal stretch of water that looks awfully like a man-made canal (although it is, actually, a natural waterway) which seldom has even a tinge of blue in it.

None of this speaks at all badly for the Observatory Hotel itself, however. The hotel is in an area of Sydney that is out-of-the-way yet very close to the sites you came to see, and the bottom end of Kent St, coming into Miller's Point, makes for a nice stroll: it hasn't been gussied up too much (yet) for the tourist trade. The area is VERY quiet at night, as it's largely residential or nine-to-five offices. A walk up the hill brings you (as you have probably guessed) to the Sydney Observatory, which is a fine old building which looks onto a nice view of the Harbour Bridge. Other hotels in the area include the Lord Nelson Brewery Hotel, which is older (it claims to be the oldest hotel in Sydney, being built mid-nineteenth century) and cheaper, but classier and better-placed.

Les May 29th, 2004 01:46 PM

Another suggestion for Melbourne.
We stayed at the Sofitel in the CBD (NOT the one near the train station), and had a wonderful experience. Very nice hotel, with a beautiful view; we had an upper floor corner room (46th floor, I think), with about 11 floor-to-ceiling windows. Excellent CBD location. Only thing is, I'm not sure if it's within the price range you stated. But it's worth looking into.

DJE May 31st, 2004 10:56 PM

Am just on the way home from a 5 week trip to Australia and would highly recommend the Westin Hotel in Melbourne. The service was terrific, the rooms are nicely appointed and the location is good as it is in the heart of the downtown area close to museums, theaters, restaurants, shopping, etc.

In Sydney we stayed 5 nights at the Intercontinental which was also terrific for us. The service we experienced was top notch in all areas and having a club floor room, we had the added benefit of the brand new top floor club lounge. Fabulous views and the added ammenities were just great. Also a hotel in a great location as it is very near the Opera House, the rocks district, botanical gardens, restaurants and other downtown shopping areas. Hope you enjoy your trip.

Tiger_Lily Jun 4th, 2004 02:45 AM

In Melbourne, I stayed in this boutique hotel called the Royce. It used to be the old Rolls Royce showroom. They kept the exterior facade but the interior is really new, modern and minimalistic. They also had a nice restaurant-bistro called Spoon. The rooms were spacious and the staff very helpful.

It is a little off from the heart of the city but we had rented a car and so accessability was not a problem at all.

This is if you're looking for something out of the typical multi-complex 5* hotels and looking for something more towards the cosy boutique feeling.

Tiger_Lily Jun 4th, 2004 02:55 AM

Oopps. The restaurant is called Dish, not Spoon... =p

anzbound Jun 7th, 2004 10:45 AM

Has anybody stayed at or know about the Lindrum Hotel in Melbourne?

KayF Jun 8th, 2004 02:28 AM

Have not stayed at the Hotel Lindrum but have walked past. It looks like a good quality boutique hotel in an historic building. Location is not great, it's not that close to shops or restaurants. All right if you don't mind a walk or a tram ride to get to things. It's opposite a new park area of Melbourne - Birrarung Marr (aboriginal name) which is next to Federation Square - it's quite a spread out area along the Yarra River. Location could be OK if you are going to some of the sports venues near MCG.

anzbound Jun 8th, 2004 03:30 AM

Thanks for the input Kay. I may have to revise our plans.

MissB99 Jun 8th, 2004 07:45 PM

Hello Klangner
I would second the recommendation of the Westin, have stayed there on twoor three occasions with children and the service has been great and the accommodation very comfortable. The pool/spa area is very nice and well maintained.
If you are looking for a more boutique experience, I recommend that you look at the nearby Aldephi Hotel. A very "hip" property, not so suitable for kids. Has a rootop heated salt water swimming pool with a glass bottom which juts out over the street. There is a roof top bar which looks over the spires of the of St Pauls Cathedral and the city skyline. It also has an excellent restaurant winnner of many awards called Ezards (quite expensive though)
The Aldephi comes up every now and then on wotif, is currently $205 AUS per night including breakfast and internet access.

bigarm1 Jun 17th, 2004 11:09 PM

We are thinking of staying at the Duxton Hotel in Melbourne near Flinders Station. Can anyone who has stayed, comment on their experiences ?

KayF Jun 19th, 2004 11:47 PM

The Duxton Hotel has an interesting history, we did a National Trust tour of the hotel and the main areas like reception/lobby were lovely, but the hotel rooms we saw seemed quite small. Flinders St is not a great area but you are right in the city and only a short walk (under the train station) to Southbank.

bigarm1 Jun 22nd, 2004 01:25 PM

Thank you KayF, appreciate your comments.

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