Melbourne has become synonymous with the word hip for many reasons. From pint-sized laneways featuring one-off vintage items to hidden coffee shops serving matcha lattes, the city has truly made its mark on Australia’s map.
As a city that prides itself on straying from the mainstream, it comes as no surprise that Melbourne also boasts many unique hotels. From sleek design hotels to luxurious suburban hideaways, here’s the city’s best boutique accommodation.
The Larwill Studio
Calling all art lovers! Melbourne is the perfect city to brush up on some culture, and at The Larwill Studio you can do all of this from the comfort of your own room. Dedicated to Australian Artist, David Larwill, the hotel draws inspiration from the artist’s studio, blending bold colours and playful patterns. Rooms are referred to as workspaces, and feature the Art Series’ signature bedding, David Larwill works, and mini-bars stocked with local produce.
If you like the idea of visiting Melbourne on foot, you’ll be pleased to know the Larwill Studio is just a ten-minute walk from the CBD. Situated in the leafy suburb of Parkville, a range of attractions are on your doorstep including Royal Park, the Flemington Racecourse, and the iconic Queen Victoria Markets.
Distinguished and unashamedly cool, the Hotel Lindrum has become an icon as far as boutique hotels in Melbourne are concerned. With its dimly-lit lobby and ground-floor lounge bar, you’d be forgiven for thinking you had entered an upscale hideaway in downtown Manhattan. Rooms have recently been refurbished by interior stylist Bate Smart Architects to meet the demands of the modern day traveller. Bespoke headboards and plush mattresses are just some of the new additions.
Melbourne is renowned for its food scene, and the Lindrum’s restaurant, Felt, is a perfect example of why. The restaurant is named after the green felt lining the hotel’s billiard table. It also offers a menu of small, medium, and large plates. Our pick is the crispy skin pork belly with onion sage puree and port jus.
Conveniently located in the heart of Melbourne’s fashion district, it comes as no surprise that the The COMO simply oozes sass and style. Rooms and suites offer a contemporary, minimalist aesthetic, all the while maintaining a warm feeling thanks to a colour palette of soft grey and chocolate. If you’ve done one too many shopping laps on Chapel Street, you can unwind in the deep-soaking Japanese-style bath.
Most locals will tell you the perfect way to initiate an evening out is with a cocktail, and fortunately you can fit in with the South Yarra crowd at the hotel’s in-house SOBar. The bar serves a range of creative cocktails including the Como Harvest, alongside the usual classic contenders. Come morning, head to the hotel’s Brasserie Restaurant for a continental breakfast, or otherwise try one of the many coffee shops lining nearby Toorak Road.
As far as suburbs in Melbourne go, South Yarra is a little like Yves Saint Laurent, it will never go out of fashion. If you want to stay amongst Melbourne’s en-vogue crew, pencil in a couple of nights at the boutique Lyall Hotel. This hotel and spa is located just minutes from vibrant Toorak Road, and will charm you with its strong attention to detail.
Suites capture the essence of this stylish address, featuring Australian-made furniture, gourmet mini-bars, and mist-free mirrors. If you want to feel like a true South Yarra local, why not opt for the glam Platinum Suite which comes with two fireplaces and a large outdoor terrace? Melbourne is famous for its coffee shops, but if you’d rather get your morning brew a little closer to home, head downstairs to Bistro Lyall.
Are you a daring kind of traveller? If so, we suggest a stay at the edgy Cullen. Located on Commercial Road in the suburb of Prahran, the not-so-commercial Cullen refers to itself as a fearless boutique hotel. Inspired by Australian contemporary Artist, Adam Cullen, rooms showcase original artworks and prints from the artist’s collection. This is paired perfectly with modern furnishings, including state-of-the-art tables and chairs.
Food options here are abundant. Head across the road to Prahran market to pick up some fresh produce to take back to your fully-equipped kitchen. Otherwise try one of the hotel’s two in-house restaurants. Gramercy Bistro is great for some New York-style food options including buttermilk pancakes, while Hutong offers some of the best dumplings in the area.
Located in Melbourne’s favourite playground, St Kilda, The Prince has a lot to be proud of. Positioned in a quiet backstreet behind the suburb’s popular Prince of Wales pub, this place means true boutique hotel business. Rooms reflect a minimalist style, pairing simple furnishings with splashes of bright colour. Our pick is the Superior Room which comes with a Queen bed and a spacious balcony overlooking lively Fitzroy Street and Port Phillip Bay.
The marble bathrooms come with MALIN+GOETZ toiletries, but if you’re craving some added pampering, we suggest heading to the hotel’s Aurora Spa. Treatments use products from the ASPAR range, which is derived from a mix of botanically active products. The lavender and coconut soak is ideal for those wanting to truly unwind.