Hotel Review of the Hilton South Wharf Two-Bedroom Suite
The Hilton South Wharf hotel in Melbourne, Australia is our home away from home. Since the old Hilton on the Park in Melbourne recently became a Pullman, this is now our hotel of choice when staying in our home city. The only other Melbourne hotel in the Hilton chain now is the newly opened Doubletree Melbourne.
Hilton South Wharf is located in an ideal part of the city, right next to the Melbourne Exhibition & Convention Centre so it’s an excellent hotel choice if you’re coming to the city for an exhibition. Next door to the hotel on the other side is the South Wharf DFO (Direct Factory Outlet) which is great for finding shopping bargains. There is also a little convenience store right next to the Hilton South Wharf if you want to grab some snacks and drinks instead of paying exorbitant hotel mini bar prices. You can also find plenty of nearby cheaper eateries around and along South Wharf Promenade and Southbank as the Hotel restaurant is pretty pricey for meals. It’s only a short stroll to one of Melbourne’s biggest entertainment venues – Crown Casino which is another good place to grab a bite to eat.
For our latest stay with our two young boys we booked a Family Fun Package that included:
- Accommodation in a two-bedroom suite
- Family pass to the neighboring Polly Woodside Tall Ship and Museum (read our Polly Woodside review here).
- Roast dinner with gourmet sides and soft drinks served in-room
- One new release in-room movie with popcorn
- Full breakfast for two adults and two kids in the Dock37 hotel restaurant
We had booked the package with a city view suite and were given one on the top 19th floor which had the most spectacular view of Melbourne. The suite has floor-to-ceiling windows that come with very effective block-out blinds, so if you need to be up early we would recommend setting the alarm or leaving the blinds open a little – otherwise enjoy a great night’s sleep!
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The two-bedroom suite comes with a nice big comfortable King bed in one room which also has a bathroom with a good size shower and a nice big bath. The second bedroom consists of two twin beds. Next to that bedroom is another smaller bathroom with a shower, sink, and toilet (no bath). There is a living area with a couch and a little self-contained kitchenette with a round table and four chairs for dining. The kitchenette includes a sink, dishwasher, and a microwave along with plates, bowls, cutlery, and glasses. We found the housekeeping staff excellent – they were happy to service our room at whatever time we requested.
The buffet breakfast is at the newly renovated Dock37 restaurant. It has a pretty good selection of hot and cold dishes. We love the self-juicing station and the staff also makes some pretty good freshly squeezed juices for guests to grab on arrival for breakfast. The staff here at the restaurant really have to be complimented, they are extremely friendly and helpful. The only thing we didn’t like is the extra cost charged for a latte, cappuccino or even a hot chocolate for the kids. They did however bring the kids a babycino each free of charge. If you don’t want the full buffet breakfast there is the Caffe Cino which is good for a quick bite or breakfast on the go.
Also as part of the family fun package, we received a roast chicken dinner served in-room which was absolutely beautiful. The chicken came with seasonal vegetables – broccolini, cauliflower, beans, onions, and zucchini along with freshly baked bread rolls and 4 soft drinks. The only problem we had with it was that it was delivered 45 minutes late. Upon check-in, we booked the dinner in for 5.00 pm but we knew that was not going to happen when we got a call to the room just after 5.00 pm asking what time we wanted dinner! Unfortunately, we had to leave the room at 6.00 pm so we were quite rushed, only having 15 minutes to eat it all.
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As Diamond HHonors members we also have access to the Executive Lounge on the 4th floor, which we always make the most of at the Hilton South Wharf lounge as we think it is one of the best going around. It is quite a big executive lounge and as an added bonus it has a lovely outside decking area which is nice on a warm sunny day.
As well as all-day snacks, coffee, and soft drinks – the lounge offers breakfast, afternoon tea, and evening pre-dinner canapés with drinks. The evening drinks on offer are self-pour beer, wine, and sparkling or you can order spirits from the staff (available from 6.00 pm-8.00 pm Mon-Fri and 5.00 pm-7.00 pm Sat & Sun). On this occasion, there was also a Canadian Club on tap.
Each night there is always a selection of two hot canapés as well as a good choice of cold meats, cheeses, dips, and sushi, and on this occasion, there were prawns that we hadn’t encountered before. There is also free Wi-Fi and plenty of newspapers and magazines to read in there. We would recommend spending a bit extra to get the executive lounge access as it is definitely worth it.
Just a note on the Wi-Fi and the 2 computers in the lounge, they are very slow! We find the Wi-Fi pretty slow all throughout the hotel and having to always re-login is very annoying – we are just fortunate that we don’t have to pay for it due to our Diamond status because if we were paying for it we would get pretty frustrated.
Also on the 4th floor is a good-sized gymnasium, but please note there is no swimming pool which is a big minus. Right next door to the gym is a little Art Gallery which is quite unique. In fact, there is quite a lot of art available to purchase here all throughout the hotel and in the lobby. The lobby area also has a Mercedes-Benz or two on the show which is also something a bit different for a hotel!
Just one nice touch that we wanted to mention – we stayed here on the Anzac Day weekend and got up at 4.30 am on Anzac Day to attend the dawn service. It was nice to go downstairs and see that staff had set up a little refreshments table with coffee, tea, juices and pastries for all those people who were up early to attend the service. We found it a nice touch and the coffee at that hour of the morning was much appreciated!