There’s a lot to love about the Pan Pacific Melbourne but one of the best things is the location. Located on the south bank of the Yarra River, it has great views of the river and city skyline and is an easy walk to the city centre. It’s connected to the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre so is handy for anyone attending an event at the Convention Centre or visiting the casino and entertainment precinct at Southbank. It’s also an easy walk to the drop-off/pick-up point for the Skybus that travels directly from Melbourne Airport to Docklands/Southbank.
South Wharf Promenade is hopping as I walk from the Skybus stop to the hotel on a Friday afternoon before a long weekend. Everyone’s hanging out in the bars and restaurants along the Promenade, or strolling along the boardwalk taking selfies and stopping to admire the view of the city as dusk starts to cast its twilight glow.
By the time I check in and get to my room on the 17th floor, it’s after 6 and the evening turn-down service has already been done. There are chocolates on the bed and the blockout blinds are drawn. I’m not ready to do away with the view yet, so I open the blind to reveal floor to ceiling windows overlooking the river towards Flinders Street Station. The blinds are electronically operated and it takes me a minute or two to find the switch, which I eventually locate on the TV wall, near the air-conditioning controls, not near the bed as I’d expected.
It’s a stunning view and I can happily watch it all evening, so I spend a lot of time at the very large desk trying to get some work done but in reality spending most of the time looking at the view, which on this particular evening includes a spectacular fireworks show. There’s also a lounge chair and a single copy of Signature Luxury Travel & Style that offers further distraction.
I’ve been given access to the Pacific Club Lounge which despite being down on the 4th floor also has a terrific view of the city and river. It’s a spacious, comfortable lounge with bold décor, express check-in and check-out, all-day refreshments, newspapers and evening drinks and canapés.
There’s such a generous assortment of dumplings, sushi, cheese, sweets and other morsels in the evening, that I really don’t need to go out. I opt to have breakfast here in the morning too, although Pacific Club accommodation entitles guests to a full buffet breakfast at Dock 37 Bar and Kitchen on the ground floor.
This is one of two dining venues in the hotel. There is also Café Orr for a quick snack. Dock 37 offers a contemporary dining experience, and if you happen to dine there, take a look at the hanging wine cabinet which is quite remarkable. There is 24-hour room service as well.
I love the extensive use of timber and the bold design of the carpets in the corridors, both of which look a lot more interesting than the monotonous greys found in many modern hotels. I also love the Aboriginal art works scattered throughout the hotel. (There’s a shop selling Aboriginal art works and glassware on the 4th floor.) The Pan Pacific has 396 rooms and suites, and a large gym open 24 hours a day, but no pool.
My Pacific Club King room has a walk-through vanity area leading to a separate shower, toilet and bathtub, with bath salts, make-up mirror, robes and slippers provided. There are handy USB ports near the king-sized bed, a pillow menu, and reading lights that fold out of the wall above the bed. Tea and coffee making facilities include Vittoria plunger coffee.
Both valet and self-parking are available. The hotel is located directly above the DFO (Direct Factory Outlet) shops, with a huge range of top-end and high street brands to choose from. The Concierge will mind your bags if you wish to explore these after checkout. Better still, stay a couple of nights and explore them at your leisure.
If you go:
Pan Pacific Melbourne
2 Convention Centre Place
Melbourne Vic 3006
Tel: +61 3 9027 2000
1800 049 610
With thanks to Pan Pacific Melbourne for hosting my very comfortable and lovely stay. For the record, I stayed in Room 1708.