[Update: Hilton Melbourne South Wharf has been re-branded into Pan Pacific Melbourne. The review below depicts my stay in the previous Hilton Melbourne South Wharf and is no way an indication to how the current property is being run.]
Melbourne has been voted as the world's most liveable city for the fourth year in a row. With a great selection of quality food, coffee and a developed arts and music scene, the city is one of my personal favourite when it comes to travelling. Across the Yarra River and just a short walk away from the famous Crown Casino and Entertainment Complex is the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Center. Adjacent to this is a stylish and and beautifully designed Category 8 property from Hilton - the Hilton Melbourne South Wharf.
I stayed in an Executive Room with wonderful city views on a high floor. The plush king-size bed is one of the best beds I have rested in. The large floor-to-ceiling windows offer beautiful views of the sparkling city lights at night (and in the day too). As an Executive-level guest, I enjoyed the exclusive Executive Lounge access with complimentary breakfast, afternoon tea as well as evening drinks with canapés. The room came with a wide range of thoughtful amenities like a well-stocked minibar, french press coffee and teabags, high speed WiFi (fee applicable), LCD TV (that came with paid channels too) and a large bathroom with a separate walk-in shower and bath. Nightly turn down service is also available - I got chocolates during turn down!
As a Hilton HHonors Gold member, I received complimentary internet that was otherwise chargeable at AU$29.00. If you do not have status with Hilton, it is a good idea to indulge in an Executive Room since you will then get complimentary WiFi at the Executive Lounge. You can also do some printing there for free as well. I received a bottle of Mount Franklin Sparking Water with a small tub of chocolate mousse as a welcome amenity - I cannot be sure whether this is given to all Executive Guests or only Gold/Diamond members.
The bathroom is spacious and thoughtfully designed with ample space for shower and a deep long soak. I really like how the bathroom looks through the use of darker colour tones and contrasting textures. Bath amenities are provided by Peter Thomas Roth as usual - click HERE to find out more about these products! I am a big fan of the Mega-Rich Body Wash fragrance as it is truly rejuvenating and refreshing.
The bathroom opens up to the bedroom via this rather large sliding door and it's beautiful to wake up in the morning to such great views. In case you are worried about being unable to sleep in, the rooms at the Hllton Mebourne South Wharf have these amazing Blackout Curtains that literally sinks your bedroom into eternal darkness - unless you push the button to draw them. These are great for sleeping in but they are also dangerous because you may get too comfortable and miss out on what this city has to offer!
As an Executive-level Guest, you get to choose to have breakfast between the Executive Lounge (which is quieter) or at Nuevo 37 which is the hotel's restaurant with great riverfront views. You need to walk pass the Sotano restaurant to get to Nuevo 37 - if you have trouble finding it just ask one of the friendly staffs around.
Breakfast runs from 6am to 10am on weekdays and 7am to 11am on weekends so be sure to get down early. The design of the restaurant is contemporary and chic, creating a sense of space with high ceilings and earthly tones.
First things first, the breakfast at Nuevo 37 is absolutely amazing. Melbourne is really the city of brunch and good coffee to most of us but the standard of brunch/breakfast food at Nuevo 37 is really on par with good restaurants around. The eggs are beautifully poached and done, the mushrooms are moist, the hashbrowns are golden and crispy and the bacon is well, bacon (you can't go wrong with bacon). Coffee on the other hand was pretty disappointing - no barista in Melbourne, really?
Truthfully, the variety isn't exactly spectacular and I have been to other Hilton properties where the selection is greater. That being said, the quality of food that is served here is definitely above average and I would most certainly encourage all of you who stay here to wake up early and get yourself some delicious breakfast.
There was a range of other hot dishes but I was really only interested in specific items that I talked about earlier on.
While it doesn't occupy the top floor of the building, the Executive Lounge at the Hilton Melbourne South Wharf is an ideal place to get some work done or simply just to laze around and enjoy beautiful views of the city. There's also a huge Nespresso machine here if you are here on business or simply need a quick caffeine fix. I can't stress on how important it is enough to go out to the city and check out the independent cafes. Good coffee don't come easily so don't waste your caffeine quota on instant coffee in Melbourne! There are also takeaway cups so if you wanna get one as a hand-warmer in winter, go ahead!
What really sets this Executive Lounge apart from the rest is the beautiful outdoor terrace that allows you to enjoy Melbourne's weather to the fullest (when it is not raining anyway). I don't think I have been to many hotels around the region that has an outdoor terrace. In fact the only other one I remember is at Thistle Johor Bahru but it is definitely not even half as impressive as this.
My tip to you on a sunny day: grab your sunnies, a book, some sparkling water and get a healthy tan while you enjoy the Australian sun with an absolute vantage point. The Hilton Melbourne South Wharf is also conveniently located next to the DFO South Wharf where you can buy branded goods for a fraction of the price. Some of my favourite brands to check out here: 2XU for cheap compressions, Sheridan for good and affordable beddings and Tommy Hilfiger for the classic polo tees.
Click HERE for more information on DFO South Wharf.
The Hilton Melbourne South Wharf is a great hotel that appeals to both business and leisure travellers. If you have to be at the MCEC for a conference, this hotel should be your accommodation of choice. If you're interested in staying in an alternative location as opposed to the city, this hotel should also be on your list. Other places of interest include Etihad Stadium and the Crown Melbourne. While it is 20-25 minutes walk from the city, there are trams that will take you where you need to go faster. I personally enjoy walking (when the weather is nice) so the stroll back to the hotel is actually very enjoyable.