From the swaying palms of St Kilda to the colourful bathing booths of Brighton Beach and surfer-friendly bays of the Mornington Peninsula, there’s a beach for everyone in Melbourne. Luckily, the choice of places to stay is just as strong. Check into one of these Melbourne beach hotels, drop your bags and head straight out onto the sand.
This outpost of the popular Art Series hotel group sits in an upmarket South Yarra location, just 10 minutes by car from St Kilda beach. The hotel pays homage to Australian painter John Olsen, whose art adorns every free inch of wall space – book a free tour with the property’s in-house art curator at reception to find out more about his legacy. All 224 guest rooms come kitted out with top amenities, including “all-in-one” tablets used for controlling the lighting, TV and air conditioning. The best part, though? Quite possibly the glass-bottomed rooftop pool, which hangs hair-raisingly over the street below.
Bordering Mornington Peninsula National Park, around a 90-minute drive south of Melbourne, this rust-red edifice was inspired by the local lighthouse keeper’s lookout point. And fittingly, all its rooms come with a sweeping view of Port Phillip Bay. Tee off on the 18-hole golf course, take off on a local hiking trail, quaff pinot noirs at boutique wineries nearby or unwind in the hotel’s One Spa. However you spend your time, there’ll always be a menu of seasonal mod-Australian fare to look forward to – creatively put together by in-house exec chef Josh Pelham and his award-winning culinary team at Samphire restaurant.
Overlooking the Yarra River, Quay West Suites is right on the doorstep of Melbourne’s Southbank promenade and CBD, so you’re unlikely to ever run out of things to do nearby. It’s also just a short tram ride to Port Melbourne Beach – a clean curve of white sand that you’ll love if you’re partial to swimming, picnics and a game or two of beach tennis. The plush suites here range from one- to three-bedroom, and all include access to hotel-standard amenities such as a modern gym, pool, sauna and deluxe spa. You can also look forward to fresh seafood at the Jarrah Restaurant – head there early to snag a table on the terrace.
There are theatres, galleries and couture boutiques on the doorstep of this award-winning 14-storey property on Collins Street, so it’s a real draw for lovers of all things artistic. The dramatic silver staircase sweeps into the lobby and is the perfect backdrop for English high tea in the Lobby Lounge. All 262 guest rooms feature a plush signature Westin Heavenly Bed and some offer private Juliet balconies with views over St Paul’s Cathedral. For beaches, your best bet is St Kilda – you can hire bikes to cover the 6km (3.7mi) distance, and swing by Degraves Street – a popular brunch spot lined with quirky cafes selling great coffee – on the way.
Melbourne beach hotels can offer magnificent bay views, and that’s exactly what you’ll get here. The fully equipped studios and apartments of Oaks WRAP on Southbank occupy the top floors of a 36-floored building. They also put you within easy reach of the city’s most popular beaches, including Port Melbourne, St Kilda, Elwood and Brighton Beach; and if you’d like to explore further afield, hop on a train from Flinders Street Station to reach family-friendly Chelsea Beach in just over an hour.
When you’re not sunning it up on the beach, hotels in Melbourne have a lot to offer back at base. Here, there’s an indoor swimming pool, spa and gym at your disposal. An upmarket option, the hotel is renowned for staff that will bend over backwards for guests – whether it’s stocking rooms with extra fluffy towels, taking care of restaurant bookings or arranging a romantic sunrise hot air balloon ride. There’s a bike hire station right next door, so you could cycle the 35-minute journey south via the Royal Botanical gardens and St Kilda, to Elwood Beach. And if you’ve still got fuel in the tank, try climbing or cycling to the peak of Point Ormond for one of the best bay views in Melbourne.
The four-star Atlantis Hotel is a top spot from which to base yourself if adventure is on the agenda. You could take off in your own car if you’ve hired one – parking is available at the hotel for 20 Australian dollars (£11) per night – and follow the famous coastal route past windswept beaches, beautiful bays and natural landmarks such as Great Otway National Park and Loch Ard Gorge. After a day on the road, the clean and contemporary rooms of the Atlantis will help you recharge and freshen up for a night out – perhaps after a dip in the heated indoor pool.
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