Best new hotels in Brisbane
Queensland’s River City is booming, with more hot new accommodation offerings than you can count on all fingers. From glamping tents and riverside wharf residences, to moody five-star digs and a 1920s bank-cum-220-room hotel, each new gem is embellishing the Brisbane skyline with their own quirk and character. Here are the latest Brisbane hotels seriously upping the ante:
Adina Apartment Hotel Brisbane (opened July 2018)
One of Brisbane CBD’s heritage buildings, the 1922 sandstone-clad Queensland Government Savings Bank building, has transformed into the 220-room Adina Apartment Hotel, introducing spacious apartments complete with a kitchen, laundry and living room, and studio rooms with a kitchenette. The Hotel features an indoor pool with an open roof, a fitness centre and will soon introduce their signature Chinese fine dining restaurant, Donna Chang, and a 250-seat basement level lounge called Boom Boom Room.
The Valley Brisbane (opened July 2018)
Ovolo is continuing its Brisbane expansion with the transformation of the former Emporium Hotel Fortitude Valley. The ‘ovolution’, which started with the rebranding of the property as The Valley Brisbane, will incorporate a transformation of rooms and public spaces before evolving into Ovolo The Valley at the end of 2018. New food and drink concepts and the celebrated ‘freebies’ (free mini bar, breakfast, wifi, happy hour and all-day snacks) will be introduced to complete the evolution. Ovolo The Valley marks the second Brisbane property for the brand, after the opening of Ovolo Inchcolm hotel in April 2018.
W Brisbane (opened June 2018)
W Brisbane is the first 5-star hotel to open in Brisbane, and it’s the only Australian city with a W Hotel. Located at 300 George Street, on the site of the old law courts, and offering views from South Bank to Mount Coot-tha, the W Brisbane boasts three bars and restaurants (including the renowned Three Blue Ducks from The Farm at Byron Bay) in addition to 312 guestrooms. The design of the hotel pays tribute to the local Indigenous culture and the river culture that defines Brisbane, with the motif snaking throughout. Equipped with the iconic ‘Whatever, Whenever’ W service (meaning guests can pick up the phone and ask for anything that is legal) the hotel is certainly raising the bar on Brisbane’s accommodation offerings.
Novotel South Bank, Brisbane (opened June 2018)
Change is afoot on the south side of the snaking Brisbane River. The new Novotel South Bank is prepping to provide for the corporate set and savvy culture vultures amongst us. Opening in June, a walkway will link the hotel with the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre. So, you can go from conference to cocktails in the lobby lounge and wine and dine clients in the on-site restaurant. Or just check-in and unwind in the outdoor pool and gym. Fairtrade bathroom amenities, free barista coffee at breakfast and Novotel’s Live N’ Dream bedding will help to seal the deal.
Sanctuary by Sirromet, Mt Cotton (opened June 2018)
If you’re looking for a grape way to glamp, look no further than Queensland’s first winery glamping experience 30 minutes-drive south of Brisbane at Sirromet Wines Estate. Currently, 18 ‘Sanctuary by Sirromet,’ safari-style glamping tents reside on the 20-acre property amongst the natural flora and wildlife with fully-furnished amenities, including a floating deck, to make you feel at home. Rates start from $280pp per night and include a daily local produce breakfast hamper.
Ovolo Inchcolm Hotel, Spring Hill (opened May 2018)
Hong Kong hospitality group, Ovolo, has expanded into Brisbane with the newly revamped Ovolo Inchcolm hotel. Located in Spring Hill, the 1924-built Georgian hotel and former medical practice boasts 50 guestrooms with an average room size of 35 square meters, including a two-bedroom General Macarthur suite, named after the five-star US Army Chief of Staff who was treated there while stationed in Brisbane during World War II. With the inclusion of a 100-plus-capacity conference and events space, the versatile hotel is designed to suit both business and leisure travellers with rates starting from $190pp a night. The hotel marks the first Brisbane flag for Ovolo and opens six months ahead of the brand’s second property due to be revealed later this year on the former Emporium site in Fortitude Valley.
The Sebel Brisbane Margate Beach (opened May 2018)
Seaside opulence lies a stone’s throw from the shores of Margate Beach at The Sebel Brisbane Margate Beach, the latest boutique hotel in Moreton Bay. The ninth property to operate under the Sebel brand in Queensland, the $15 million-dollar hotel which opened 29th May features 58 rooms boasting a chic façade – neutral tones, minimal furnishings and panoramic ocean views. The minimal décor is made up of stellar onsite facilities like a rooftop function space, pool and conference facilities. Offering access from Brisbane Airport (20 minutes) and Brisbane City (40 minutes) while being close to local transport options, The Sebel Brisbane Margate Beach is now open with rates starting from $160pp.
FV by Peppers, Fortitude Valley (opened March 2018)
Flatiron skyscrapers are no longer synonymous with the New York City skyline – the classic structure has been reimagined at FV by Peppers. This 970-room luxury hotel is the newest addition to Fortitude Valley’s accommodation offering, with one and two-bedroom apartments boasting understated elegance – neutral tones, minimal furnishings and floor to ceiling glass for 5-star views of Brisbane City. The minimal décor is made up with stellar onsite facilities like a heated u-shaped skyline pool with swim up pool bar on level 6, a moonlight cinema and a yoga retreat. Opening special rates are available until November 30, starting from $199 per night for a one-bedroom apartment.
Emporium 2, South Bank (opening August 2018)
Hip design, the latest in-room technology and personalised service will be the starring elements of the Emporium Hotels Group’s new five-star Emporium Hotel South Bank in Brisbane. Opening its doors in August 2018 and forming part of the $600 million Southpoint precinct on Grey Street, the hotel features 143 luxuriously appointed suites, some with free standing marble baths jagging floor to ceiling full frontal city views, and an abundance of premium food and beverage options by award-winning Brisbane chef Josue Lopez, formerly head chef of the two-chef hatted GOMA restaurant. Further a Sky Bar offers magnificent views over South Bank Parklands, the Brisbane River, city and beyond. Rates start from $295pp.
The Calile Hotel, Fortitude Valley (opening September 2018)
Beverly Hills luxe meets James St cool. Prepare to say hello to The Calile Hotel, a seven-storey ‘urban resort’ that’s home to 175 rooms, a mix of boutiques, cafes and restaurants, like Gold Coast Greek favourite, Hellenika, on the pool terrace. The hotel’s leafy, urban streetscape façade will pay homage to Brisbane’s subtropical climate, with an adjoining micro-precinct, Ada Lane, set to have lips smacking with five new eateries and bars. Also joining the hotel is KAILO Wellness Medispace, Forme Fitness and an array of internationally loved fashion brands like Dion Lee and Bec & Bridge.
The Westin Brisbane (opening November 2018)
The next five-star jewel in the dazzling crown that is Brisbane accommodation will be The Westin, with 286 rooms (38 suites), a swim up pool bar known at the Nautilus and a dedicated restaurant precinct serving regional and international cuisine. Keen to get active but forgot to bring your gear? No worries! The Westin have partnered with New Balance through their WestinWORKOUT program to lend you some brand new activewear during your stay.
Howard Smith Wharves, Fortitude Valley (opening late 2018)
The Howard Smith Wharves revitalisation project is set to redevelop an underutilised site into a lifestyle, entertainment and events precinct, positioned on 3.4 hectares of riverfront land under the iconic Story Bridge. The site will introduce a five-star, 164-room boutique Art Series Hotel, alongside urban chic restaurants, cafes, coffee-roasting and a craft brewery.
Queens Wharf (opening 2022)
The mammoth Queens Wharf Development is bringing not one but five new premium hotel brands to Brisbane including the Ritz Carlton and Brisbane’s first six-star hotel. Not much has been announced in the way of hotel details, but completion dates for parts of the precinct are currently set at around 2022.
There are a few new Brisbane tours you should experience while in town:
Whether you enjoy architecture, art, restaurants, stories, design, history, gardens, coffee or just want to get to know the City better, Walk Brisbane has a tour to suit. For foodies, the Laneways Café Tour (Bean, Coffee Iconic and Felix in Burnett Lane) and the Sundowners in the City tours are a must. Their new Small Bars of the Valley tour takes guests on a three-hour bar tour of Fortitude Valley’s finest establishments.
A revealing local journey and significant tale indeed. Get to know your famous guide, novelist Rosa Caroline Praed (1851 – 1935), a woman well ahead of her time and one of Australia’s most prolific authors. She returns with her quick wit and social commentary, revealing a deeper insight into the experience of local women through Brisbane’s HerStory. From her perspective, strolling Brisbane together, you will discover many of the extraordinary female characters who have contributed to our city’s soul. Learn how challenges were faced and how innovation has been achieved across the spectrum … marriage, science, politics, education, employment and careers, transport, religion, cultural awareness perspectives, the arts … all will be upturned!
Explore Brisbane with local Aboriginal tour guides as you walk together in the footsteps of their ancestors through the heart of Meeanjin (Brisbane City). BlackCard offers three different walking tours in the heart of Brisbane city that provide a rare opportunity to learn more about Brisbane’s Aboriginal history through the guides’ storytelling. Visiting significant spots like the Southbank Cultural Precinct and Kurilpa Bridge, Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre and other public art sites, tours range from 90 minutes to three hours, with prices starting from $55.