Do you know what's easier than cleaning your apartment? Going on a stay-cation! (Yeah...don't come to us for advice on how to be a responsible adult). Melbourne's a city full of boutique cafes, fancy restaurants and trendy bars, and sometimes you need an equally chic place to come home to...not just your mouldy apartment. Melbourne hotels, B&Bs and boutique share accommodation, we've rounded up the best places to rest your head in the city and nearby 'burbs.
Get the credit cards ready. Here are the best places to stay in Melbourne.
Photography: United Places
If you’re looking for something chic, extravagant and totally upmarket, United Places in South Yarra is your next Melb staycay. We're talking an on-site butler and award-winning designer suites: muted colour palettes, cosmopolitan decorating and bathtub views over the Botanic Gardens. United Places is all about Melbourne pride, using local brands (and international superstars like Le Labo). Hungry? Head downstairs to Matilda, Scott Pickett's new flame-grilled fine dining restaurant. Doesn't get better than that.
The Jazz Corner Hotel
Some people give La La Land the credit for making jazz cool again, but we know the truth—it never went out of style in Melbourne. The Jazz Corner Hotel is the epitome of old-school swagger. Self-contained studio rooms with brown leather couches and record-clad walls. We recommend choosing either the one or two-bedroom apartment to get the private balconies with city views. The hotel itself is tucked at the top end of the city, a one-minute walk from Flagstaff Station. It’s right above Bird’s Basement, Melbourne’s intimate New York-style jazz club. Groovy, baby.
St Kilda Dreamhouse
If you want a family getaway (or maybe just a whole pad to yourself) check out this beaut of an Air B’n’B in St Kilda. The house has a stack of historical and stylish features—a Popham chevron-tiled fireplace, a walk-in rain shower, and a bottle-blue Edwardian door. You get ample space, plus an outdoor courtyard with a woodfire pizza oven (score!). If you don’t feel like cooking, take a stroll down through St Kilda. Dine in at Pontoon by the beach, and or treat yo' self to a wine and cheese at Milk the Cow.
Three words. Free. Mini. Bar. (Look, we couldn’t decide if mini-bar was one or two words, but stay with us). The Adelphi is all the coolest, kitschiest things in Melbourne thrown into a hotel: king-sized beds with faux fur throws, graphic print carpets and décor, and mural-slicked bathrooms. It’s smack bang in the heart of Flinders Lane, with restaurant powerhouses Cumulus Inc. and Supernormal just down the road. Once you’ve hit the savoury, head back to your hotel for a sweet snog at the famous Om Nom Dessert Bar. These guys serve up truly insane sugary concoctions.
Chapel Street Shades Of Grey
Air B’n’B’s are really having a moment. You get that quiet, intimate feel that you can’t always achieve in a hotel, and the privacy that comes from having no daily housekeeping (look, we love housekeeping, but sometimes we just want to leave our towels on the floor and not be judged, ok?). This Chapel St apartment is a great example. The muted, sleek design calls for a much-need 50 Shades of Grey joke, but we'll try and restrain ourselves. It's fully furnished, contained and private. To have a real night out on Chapel, we’d recommend a bite to eat at Abacus and a boogie after at Lucky Coq. If you head home early enough, you might even be able to grab a Pidapipo gelato.
You know that you’re always going to have a good time staying at any of The Art Series hotels and the first of the lot, The Cullen, is no exception. You'll find it right next to the Prahran Market, a short walk from Chapel St and a whisper from the south-side version of a CBD laneway, Greville Street. You can’t really beat this locay. The hotel itself, inspired by the works of Adam Cullen, is stylish AF and dotted with signature pieces of art. If you feel like living large, go for the penthouse with a wrap-around deck, perfect with a glass of wine and some stunning views. No one does brunch like Prahran, and we’d suggest St Edmonds or Tall Timber.
CBD Forest Apartment
We love a good enthusiastic theme. That’s the deal with this Air B’n’b, appropriately titled ‘Forest and Heaven Themed Apartment’. It’s smack bang in the middle of the CBD, a three minute walk from Degraves St and six from Hardware Lane (a.k.a easy access to eateries like The French Saloon). The bedroom is a fluffy celestial-looking sanctuary, with a cloud-themed bed that you want to dive headfirst into. The living room, bathroom and dining room will make you feel like you walked into a tropical rainforest, complete with log chairs, walls covered in ivy and grass carpet.
The InterContinental Rialto is a proper beast of a building. It’s a part of Melbourne’ cityscape for a long time, kicking around (in its earliest version) since 1885. If we had one word to sum it up it would be: luxe. Their signature suites are designed to give you the feel of iconic Melbourne suburbs: St Kilda, Brighton, Yarra Valley and the Laneways of CBD. You’re spoilt for choice in all things food and activities, and you don't even have to leave the building—go for a dip in the indoor pool, or a bite to eat at Merchant. The best part? You can even live out your secret Rapunzel dreams and stay inside one of their turrets.
Want all the fun of the CBD, but also a good night sleep? The Pegasus is the perfect, family-friendly city hotel for you. Located on A’Beckett street, far enough at the top of the city so that you don’t have to drive and do (gulp) hook turns, and not so close that you get city noise trailing up to your bedroom. They offer up super fun themed kids bedroom (we love a theme, we told you) like Cars or Mario Kart. Uh, kids bedrooms? We’ll be cuddling up with Luigi, thanks. If you’re a fussy lot and can’t agree on a place to eat, head down to HWKR—an Asian high-class food hall with rotating culinary tenants. Sorted.
You’re probably well aware of Crown—we get it. But look, it’s a must-do for any proper Melburnian, and totes earns its place on this list. Venture to this one for something swanky—a milestone birthday, anniversary or to blow your tax return. As well as the luxe rooms, they pull through with the food big time. Keep up with the Kardashians (sorry, we had to) at the infamous Nobu, or head down to the basement to The Den for a cheeky cocktail. Spice Temple is always a winner too.
Image credit: AirBnB