After picking up our bags, we hopped in a cab for our half hour ride to the Westin Melbourne. It was an altogether unremarkable ride and quite frankly I don’t quite remember it at all because I fell asleep as soon as I got in. I believe the ride cost around 50 USD for 4 passengers and 4 bags.
Anyway, 30 minutes later we were helped out of the cab by the hotel bellman who took care of our bags while we stepped in to check in. The Westin was pretty much empty at our check in time so there was hardly any wait. We paid for the rooms using 10,000 star points (I believe it is around 35k Marriott points as of this moment as a Category 5 property) and I chose the place because of its close proximity to Flinders Street Station and all the major attractions in the city.
For being a platinum member: one room was offered the free breakfast, while the other was offered a 50% off discount card. Not exactly the most generous policy, but it was a nonissue because not all of us get up too early in the morning anyway.
Standard Double Room
Christmas time is a busy time for the hotel so we were just assigned standard rooms despite trying to use some of those Suite Night Awards for being platinum members with SPG. We’ve personally had a great success rate with those certificates, but it was not to be on this particular stay.
Our double room was pretty standard for a Westin with both the bedroom and the bathroom being a little more spacious than normal. I did enjoy the fact that there was a large desk to work on. Lately not enough hotels have good enough desks.
The restroom had the usual Westin Brand toiletries (white tea aloe) and featured both a shower and a soaking tub. Toothbrushes, shaving kits, and more were available on request. This was perhaps the aspect of the room that really made it a bit better than your typical Westin room in the United States.
Breakfast @ Allegro
Every morning breakfast is served at the main hotel restaurant, Allegro. Platinum members have access to the full breakfast buffet and you don’t have to sign a bill afterwards either.
The spread is quite nice and definitely better than what’s found at U.S Westins, but the place was jam packed. It included everything from breads to pastries to cereals to a few hot buffet items. Everything seemed to be of a very good quality and service was fantastic the one morning I was there. Though I heard it was nice all the way through our stay.
When we first arrived, we couldn’t even find a seat and the waitress had to call our room half an hour later when it was ready. I am assuming that this was probably due to Boxing Day and Christmas both occurring during our stay.
There is no beating the location of the Westin Melbourne because it is situated right next to the Flinders Street Station, Federation Square, and the Princes Bridge. And of course it isn’t far from the MCG or Rod Laver Arena.
I pretty much had a photography party every morning I was in Melbourne and I didn’t have to wake up at a ridiculously early hour either (more on that later).
Melbourne is perhaps Australia’s finest city. I liked Sydney, but I certainly fell in love with Melbourne. There is no denying the charming European ambiance of the city mixed with modernity and a wonderful food scene. Anyway I will have a full photography tour of Melbourne right after this post, but here are just a few images I shot from my Google Pixel.
Checkout & My Drone Situation
Checkout was a smooth process and I ended up with a $0 bill as expected from an award night stay. The hotel called up a cab for us and loaded our bags and it was now time to leave with one caveat:
So I forgot to realize as we were leaving Australia that I was headed to India where my Mavic Pro was not allowed. So right before I was supposed to get into the cab, I handed my drone and the attached battery to the concierge for shipment back to the U.S. I nearly missed my flight because of this charade (there was some crazy traffic headed to the airport)
Anyway the fact that the drone had a battery attached made it rather difficult for the concierge to ship my drone back, so the concierge had to remove the battery and store it at the hotel. And so while the drone came back, the battery is still presumably in Melbourne.
Extremely stupid of me to not think of it beforehand. Quite frankly, I’m not sure why I brought it with me in the first place because I wasn’t allowed to fly anywhere along my route except may be in parts of New Zealand.
The Westin Melbourne is perhaps one of the best situated hotels for local sightseeing and sports events alike. The hotel checks off all the boxes you would expect of a highly rated Westin and service is certainly nothing short of excellent. I would definitely return to this hotel and since its a Marriott Category 5, it is eligible for some of those free night certificates.
TRIP REPORT INDEX:
United Club SFO Concourse F Rotunda
United Global First Lounge – SFO (Now Replaced with the Polaris Lounge)
United NEW Polaris SFO-AKL (777-300ER)
Air New Zealand Economy AKL-CHC
AirBnB Review: Lake Tekapo
Focal Point: Tekapo
World’s Greatest Drives: Tekapo to Franz Josef Glacier
Te Waonui Forest Retreat: Franz Josef Glacier
Focal Point: Lake Matheson
Focal Point: Korowai-Torlesse Tussocklands Park
Crowne Plaza Christchurch
Manaia (Priority Pass) Lounge Christchurch
Qantas Economy Christchurch – Melbourne
Focal Point: The Twelve Apostles
Singapore Airlines First Class Lounge Melbourne
Singapore Airlines First Class Melbourne – Singapore
Singapore Airlines Private Room @ Changi
Singapore Airlines Silver Kris Lounge @ Changi
Singapore Airlines Economy Class Singapore – Hyderabad
Westin Hyderabad Mindspace
Focal Point: Hyderabad – Old City
Plaza Premium Lounge Hyderabad
Etihad Business Class HYD-AUH-DFW
Etihad Business Class Lounge Abu Dhabi
Etihad Business Class Lounge Abu Dhabi (US Departures)