The capital city of Victoria is defined by its culture. Food, coffee, the arts, entertainment and design reach their apotheosis in this most visitor-friendly of Australian cities. Built along the serpentine bends and reaches of the Yarra River, Melbourne seamlessly blends heritage architecture – epitomised by the balustraded Victorian bungalows of Fitzroy and the Edwardian Flinders Street Railway Station – with cutting edge construction that has created 52 skyscrapers in the city centre: the most of any Southern Hemisphere city. Filled with 5-star hotels and ornate apartments, these superb steel and glass towers take opulent living into the stratosphere.
Just a few minutes away from the door of your luxury hotel you will find a plethora of dining and entertainment options. In Melbourne’s famous Laneways you will discover a café culture steeped in tradition and brimming with modern vitality. When you step through the giant red gates of Australia’s oldest Chinatown, you enter a whole new world of sumptuous Asian delights. Up on Lygon Street you can sample the finest Italian food imaginable and, indeed, wherever you go in multicultural Melbourne you will find cuisine and entertainment from every corner of the world.
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The Windsor is Australia’s most loved and renowned grand hotel, pre-dating The Savoy in London, The Plaza and The Waldorf Astoria in New York, The Ritz in Paris, and Raffles Hotel in Singapore. Established in 1883, it combines the classic beauty and architecture of the Victorian age with the graciousness of that bygone era.
Located across the stately Parliament House and next to the famous Princess Theatre, The Windsor is only steps away from Melbourne’s luxury boutiques, theatres, laneways and Chinatown, with the picturesque Treasury, Fitzroy and Carlton Gardens a short walk from our doorstep.
On 3 June 1923, with renovations complete, the hotel hosted a luncheon attended by His Royal Highness, The Prince of Wales. In honour of this occasion, the hotel was appropriately renamed The Windsor.
The Windsor has been a home away from home for many famous Australians during their stay in Melbourne. Former Prime Minister Sir Robert Menzies kept Suite 306 at The Windsor for many years; it is now known as the Sir Robert Menzies Suite in his honour. Notable international guests included members of the English cricket team, who were frequent guests at the hotel, despite patriotic local factory workers’ efforts to disrupt their sleep by ‘accidentally’ knocking over the empty milk churns in the laneway.
Welcome to Melbourne, Australia’s second-largest metropolis well known for its diverse range of tourist attractions. Get outside of your luxury hotel in Melbourne to explore world-renowned museums, impressive galleries, beautiful gardens, and tree-lined promenades. To help you decide where to go, we’ve put together a list of the best things to do in Melbourne.
1. See Works of Art at the National Gallery of Victoria
The oldest art gallery in Australia, the National Gallery of Victoria is home to an incredible collection of works of art. Known to locals as NGV, this fabulous gallery boasts works by masters such as Rembrandt, Picasso, and Cezanne. You can also look forward to seeing works by celebrated Australian artists.
For those who don’t know the National Gallery of Victoria is actually made up of two parts. At the Ian Potter Centre, expect to see works by contemporary Australian artists. Art from the US, Asia, and Europe can be found at NGV International in St. Kilda. In addition to the permanent collection, the gallery hosts nearly 50 exhibitions a year, kid’s programs, and special events.
2. Enjoy Views from the Eureka Tower
If you think that the view from your luxury hotel in Melbourne offers fabulous views, you’re in for a big surprise. For breathtaking 360-degree views of the city, head out to the 91-story Eureka Tower in Southbank. This third highest building in Australia is home to the tallest observation deck in Melbourne.
The elevator will take you to the building’s 88th floor in less than 40 seconds. Adrenaline junkies can enjoy the thrills of the Edge, a glass square that slides out 3 meters from the building and offers unparalleled views from every single angle.
3. See the Heart and Soul of Melbourne: Federation Square
Located just opposite Flinders Street Station, Federation Square is one of the must-visit places in Melbourne. “Fed Square” is a popular place to meet with friends and a great spot for tourists to start their sightseeing in Melbourne.
With over 2,000 events annually ranging from performances to festivals, there is always something going on at Melbourne’s only official town square. Looking for attractions to visit? Federation Square is home to the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI), the Australian section of the National Gallery of Victoria, and the Koorie Heritage Trust.
4. Smell the Roses at Royal Botanic Gardens
Establishes in the 19th century, Melbourne’s Royal Botanic Gardens are a haven for nature lovers! These picturesque gardens in the neighbourhood of South Yara cover an area of 30 hectares and house over 10,000 plant species from around the world. Travellers can explore the Ian Potter Foundation Children’s Garden, admire the beauty of a colourful array of blooms in the Rose Collection, and see live theatre performances and moonlight cinema projections.
You can also hop on a boat on Ornamental Lake and see the gardens from a unique perspective. After all the sightseeing, unwind with a traditional high tea at the popular Terrace Café.
5. Boat Tour on the Yarra River
If you wish to learn more about the history of the Yarra River and see some of Melbourne’s finest tourist attractions from a different angle, we recommend hopping on a riverboat cruise on the Yarra River. You will find a bunch of cruise companies along Southbank that offer these river cruises.
During the boat tour, you will have an opportunity to see attractions such as Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG), Birrarung Marr, Como House, the posh Toorak Mansions, and the Royal Botanic Gardens.
6. Try Local Foods at Queen Victoria Market
Foodies on vacation in Melbourne will definitely want to pay a visit to Queen Victoria Market. Over 140 years old, this huge open-air market is best experienced on foot. The Vic Market (as the locals call it) is packed with local vendors selling everything from meat and fresh farm veggies to local food delicacies.
Make sure to try the gözleme and enjoy artisan coffee from the Market Lane Coffee. You will also find stalls that sell handmade jewellery and clothing at Queen Victoria Market. The Vic also hosts food tours, so get ready to sample all the local dishes and learn more about Australian cuisine.
7. Explore South Bank
Culture vultures visiting Melbourne should head out to Southbank. Located right on the banks of the beautiful Yarra River, this picturesque precinct is full of alfresco cafes, cultural attractions, and shops.
You’ll find some of the city’s best nightlife in the South Wharf area where heritage sheds are nowadays popular nightclubs and entertainment venues. Shopaholics will be pleased to hear that South Bank hosts a cool arts and crafts market on Sundays.