Where to stay in Melbourne


I’ve put together this list of the best places to stay in Melbourne to help you make the most of your trip.

Where to stay in Melbourne

Written by Michael Turtle

Michael Turtle is the founder of Travel Australia Today. He has been a journalist for more than 20 years and loves exploring different parts of Australia.

Michael Turtle is the founder of Travel Australia Today and has been a journalist for 20 years.

I've got lots of details below - so you can also jump straight down to my top tips on where to stay in Melbourne:

It seems like every time I go to Melbourne (which is quite often), there are cool new hotels opening.

Opulent new five star skyscrapers in the city centre, renovated heritage buildings becoming boutique accommodation, or cool apartments in local neighbourhoods – there’s always something new to try.

The same can be said about the different neighbourhoods in Melbourne too, because although there are a few obvious areas to stay in Melbourne, there are plenty of other spots to experience as well.

The city centre (and surrounding districts like Southbank or Docklands) is the obvious choice for where to stay in Melbourne for many travellers, with plenty to do and great restaurants and transport.

But don’t forget that Melbourne is famous for its quirky suburbs, so you might want to base yourself in one of them if you’re going to be here a bit longer.

Regardless of where you choose, you’re going to find some world-class hotels and some really funky artistic options too.

Best places to stay in Melbourne
A five-star hotel in Melbourne’s city centre

The public transport system is really good, so any of the places to stay in Melbourne that I’m going to recommend are well-connected to the main centres.

But you’ll definitely find different vibes in these various neighbourhoods, which is something you may want to consider, particularly if you’re going to be here for more than a night or two.

  • City centre: The best area to stay in Melbourne for first-time visitors, with easy access to attractions and transport.
  • Southbank: Another good area for first-time visitors, although there’s less variety and more high-end accommodation.
  • Docklands: With lots of modern apartments, but with easy access to the city centre, this can be good for longer stays, groups, or business trips.
  • Fitzroy (and Collingwood): These cool inner-city suburbs put you right amongst fantastic bars, restaurants, and street art.
  • South Yarra: A stylish part of the city that has more upmarket shops and cafes, with some cool boutique hotels.
  • St Kilda: Right on the beach, it’s about 20 minutes from the city centre but has great dining, fun live music, and a good variety of backpacker options.
  • Brunswick: An excellent choice to feel like a local in a residential neighbourhood, especially one with a vibrant multicultural atmosphere.

Before I run you through the details of where to stay in Melbourne, have a look at this map so you can see how they all fit together.

Where to stay in Melbourne - map

The central areas will be your best option if you want a typical tourist experience, but the further out you go, the more you’ll find interesting neighbourhoods with more of a local feel.

To help plan your visit, you might be interested in my ideas for the best things to do in Melbourne.

So, with all of that said, let’s have a look in detail at my top tips for the best accommodation in Melbourne.

City centre

For first-time visitors, I think there’s no better area to stay in Melbourne than the city centre. Unlike some of Australia’s other state capitals, Melbourne’s CBD is about much more than business, with lots of residential and cultural zones here too.

Staying in Melbourne’s city centre gives you the best transport connections to a variety of suburbs (including on the world’s largest tram network), which are well worth exploring to discovering why Melbourne is rated among the world’s most liveable cities.

Where to stay in Melbourne
The city centre is where you’ll find Melbourne’s iconic laneways

But you’ll spend plenty of time seeing the sights in Melbourne’s city centre, seeing sights like Parliament House, St Patrick’s Cathedral, Flagstaff Gardens, Queen Victoria Market, and Federation Square.

Some of the best hotels in Melbourne are here in the CBD, but there’s also a really interesting range of accommodation and, regardless of your budget and taste, you’ll likely find something here that suits your style.


With a quieter atmosphere, Europa Melbourne has privacy curtains in the dorm rooms and great value in the city centre.

  • Space Hotel: A very cool hotel with a more social vibe, plus a spacious kitchen and great view from the rooftop.
  • Flinders Backpackers: The hostel has a cute homely atmosphere with helpful staff and a colourful design.

If you’re travelling around the country to more places than just Melbourne, you may be interested in my list of the best hostels in Australia.


I think the Victoria Hotel is much nicer than anything else you’ll find at this price, with good rooms in a perfect location.


From the cool rooftop bar to the funky lobby, the QT Melbourne exudes contemporary elegance.

  • W Melbourne: A relatively new hotel that has funky rooms and a young vibe, with a very cool indoor pool area.
  • Le Meridien: Set in an old theatre with an art deco facade, this new hotel blends aspects of Melbourne’s theatre district with the French style of the accommodation brand.


With everything you would expect from the luxury experts, The Ritz-Carlton is one of Melbourne’s best, set on the 80th floor!

  • Next Hotel Melbourne: Without being too flashy, everything here has been well considered, with an emphasis on comfort.
  • Park Hyatt: Although it’s still fresh and new, there’s a more traditional feel to the decor in a quiet location right on the edge of the city centre.


The Yarra River courses through the heart of Melbourne with the city centre on one side and Southbank on the other.

Although it’s just metres away from central Melbourne, Southbank feels really different. It’s a modern and ritzy part of the city, with high-end accommodation that focuses on the area’s world-class entertainment and dining district, particularly Crown Casino.

But at some times of the day, it’s also one of the most relaxing parts of the city. While the northern side of the river is primarily covered with train lines and frequented by office workers, over here you’re right next to the Yarra and an early morning stroll from your accomodation brings the splashing of the oars as rowboats cruise past while the city begin to wake.

This is a great part of Melbourne to stay in if your focus is going to be on arts and culture, with some of the city’s best restaurants just a short stroll from the Arts Centre and National Gallery of Victoria. But there’s also easy access to other neighbourhoods, so you might want to choose to stay in Southbank just for the beautiful hotels.


There isn’t much budget accommodation here, but the Mercure Melbourne Southbank is one of the cheapest.


If you’re looking for a bit more space, Exclusive Stays – Yarra Condos has two bedrooms and lots of facilities.


Part of Southbank’s main entertainment venue, Crown Metropol Melbourne brings a cooler vibe to the luxury accommodation.

  • Ink Hotel Melbourne Southbank: Lots of small touches make this a funky hotel that’s quite good value.
  • Adelphi Hotel: Although it’s just across the river from Southbank, it’s close enough to the neighbourhood and is so cool it’s worth considering.


One of the most iconic hotels in Melbourne, Crown Towers puts you in the centre of this vast entertainment complex.

  • The Langham: The classic elegance you’ve come to expect is on full display at this beautiful riverside location.
  • Quay West Suites: A great option if you want a five-star accommodation but with suites that offer self-contained kitchenette facilities.


If you haven’t been to Melbourne for a decade or two, you probably wouldn’t recognise Docklands.

The neighbourhood has seen rapid development over the last two decades, transforming from a disregarded barren collection of ship docks into a jungle of skyscrapers full of modern apartments.

For travellers, that means it’s an area full of larger serviced accommodations with facilities like full kitchens.

Docklands is one of the best places to stay in Melbourne for families or groups. You still have decent public transport access to the city centre and other neighbourhoods, yet it can feel like its own little world.

Despite its modern feel, Docklands is much quieter than the neighbouring CBD and Southbank. But there are things to do here like Docklands Park for the little ones, or it’s not far to some of the city’s main attractions.


Although nothing is cheap in Docklands, you’ll get decent value at the Four Points by Sheraton, a lovely hotel with good views.

  • Peppers Docklands: The beds are comfortable, the location is convenient with public transport, and there’s even a small pool.
  • Travelodge Hotel Melbourne Docklands: You’ll see the modern design as soon as you enter the building and, while the rooms have a fairly standard interior, they’re really clean and comfortable.


There are plenty of apartments in Docklands, but this two-bedroom waterfront has lots of space and beautiful views.


The warm hospitality is just one selling-point of Quest NewQuay, which is also well located and has great views across the neighbourhood.


Sleek and stylish, Melbourne Marriott Hotel Docklands has huge comfortable beds, great service, and phenomenal views.


Outside of the central neighbourhoods I’ve already mentioned are some fantastic inner-city suburbs that offer the cultural eccentricity that Melbourne is famous for.

It may not have as many big landmarks as Sydney, but the communities are a highlight here, and I think Fitzroy (and neighbouring Collingwood) is one of the best places to stay in Melbourne to see this for yourself.

Best areas to stay in Melbourne
The cool streets of Fitzroy and Collingwood

Skyscrapers are replaced by double-wide streets with tram tracks running through. These roads are flanked by two-story shophouses, the bottom floor a restaurant, cafe or thrift shop, and the top floor of an early 20th century apartment.

The facades of these buildings have changed little over the last 100 years. Yet what lies within them explores the neighbourhood’s artistic, trendy and hipster side. 

Foodies will love staying in Fitzroy – but there’s more here than just restaurants. There are cool cafes, street art, and a friendly youthful nightlife that combines students and young professionals.

Fitzroy is really close to the city centre and there’s great transport, but because it’s residential, you’ll also find more apartments and houses here, so it can be good for groups or longer stays.


Set in a historic property with a boutique feel, The Nunnery is one of Melbourne’s most interesting backpacker options.

  • Royal Derby Hotel: Good for short stays, with clean and comfortable accommodation in a funky neighbourhood.


Although it’s got a really cool design, the rooms at lyf Collingwood are quite small, which helps keep the price down.

  • Melbourne Metropole Central: The rooms are relatively simple but they’ve got everything you need and it’s a great location.
  • Veriu Collingwood: A lovely modern hotel that even has an outdoor pool and often offers affordable rates during the week.


Clean, comfortable, and minimalist with great views, Tyrian Serviced Apartments is also really quiet despite its location in a busy area.


For a bit more space, this Modern Haven has two bedrooms in a relaxing and well-decorated house.

  • Spacious Converted Home: Housed in an old heritage building with modern design, a very homey atmosphere, ideal location, and great hosts.
  • The Eversley: A home away from home, there are lovely soft tones in the modern design, with a gorgeous garden to hang out in.

South Yarra

If Fitzroy is young, hip and colourful, then South Yarra is simply glam. Alongside Toorak, the stylish suburb has long been the stomping ground of the city’s upper class.

Although it’s a ritual to poke fun at these uptowners, the reality is that South Yarra is a great place to stay in Melbourne. Once you get your bearing, it’s really easy to get around, with South Yarra station just a couple of stops from the heart of the city.

Those who have a shopping itch to scratch will feel at home in South Yarra. Rows of boutique shops dot the map, including Chapel Street. This mix of shops, bars and late-night clubs remains one of the most happening nightlife streets in Melbourne.

You’ll find a couple of really stylish boutique hotels in Prahran which I think justify staying here just in themselves. Or you could also look into neighbouring Richmond that is a bit of a blend between South Yarra and Fitzroy, with nightlife and good shopping.


In an elegant heritage building, Toorak Manor Hotel has rooms that feel like you’re in a historic house, even though you’re so close to the action.


The well-located apartments at Exclusive Stays – SXY have balconies with city views, plus there’s even a small rooftop pool!

  • Vogue: With a great location and facilities, there’s a nice city view and access to an indoor pool.
  • Saint George Accommodation: Private and quiet, this studio apartment has everything you’ll need in this convenient location close to public transportation.


I love the vibe at Ovolo South Yarra, which has a hip modern feel and lots of fun treats like a free minibar!

  • The Cullen: With beautiful Australian art decorating the hotel, and super comfortable rooms, this is another fantastic option in Prahran.
  • Davis Avenue Apartments: The apartments are bright, clean, and quiet, with a touch of nature in this charming tree-lined street.


The Victorian interiors of this grand three-bedroom house offer a luxurious heritage feel in one of Melbourne’s best areas.

St Kilda

Trendy suburbs with cool nightlife and good dining don’t necessarily have to be expensive. The coastal suburb of St Kilda has all of that – but it is also known for its great selection of budget accommodation, especially for backpackers.

St Kilda lies south of South Yarra, bordered by Albert Park and the waters of Port Phillip Bay. Its beachfront is fun to visit but, be warned, this isn’t one of those Aussie beaches you were told about in the commercials!

The beach, walking tracks and bounty of green space make St Kilda wonderful for being outdoors. As you explore, you’ll find the iconic Luna Park theme park and spot several of Melbourne’s best live music venues.

It only takes about 20 minutes by car from St Kilda to the city centre (and only slightly longer by public transport) so it’s easy enough to reach the main attractions. But if you’re planning to do a lot of sightseeing, you may get a little frustrated about the distance after a couple of days


There’s a cool modern feel to Selina St Kilda, making this one of the best hostels in Melbourne (with really comfortable rooms).


Decorated with original local artwork, there’s a welcoming atmosphere at Tolarno Hotel and great rates during the week.

  • Adara St Kilda: Spacious and clean, with a large bed, loads of amenities, and great value for money.
  • Sixty Two On Grey Serviced Apartments: In a historical building from the 1860s, the rooms are relatively simple but spacious and within easy reach of the main sights.


Close to the beach and great dining, Quest St Kilda Bayside has lovely rooms and a refreshing pool in the garden.

  • Crest on Park: Along with lovely modern rooms (some with kitchenettes), guests also get free access to St Kilda Sea Baths.


In a stunning Art Deco building with beautiful rooms and great dining, I think The Prince is easily the best hotel in St Kilda.

  • The Hamptons Apartments: As the name suggests, there’s an elegant beachside theme to the interior design of these large modern apartments.
  • Kimberley Gardens Hotel: Although it’s set further back from the beach than other options, the apartments and villas are spacious and modern.


And finally I wanted to recommend Brunswick. It’s not normally a top suggestion for where to stay in Melbourne, but it’s a fantastic option for something a lot more local.

North of the CBD, Brunswick is a community of communities. Over the years it’s been where immigrants have settled from Italy, Greece, and the Middle East, so the food scene here is diverse, with a wonderful mix of restaurants, cafes and bakeries.

Along the neighbourhood’s main thoroughfare, Sydney Road, you’ll be in the typical Melbourne landscape of two-story townhouses guiding you down the street. But with every side street is a chance to uncover Brunswick’s vibrant culture.

There are galleries, vintage stores, bookshops going against the grain and craft beer served at half-condemned hotels. Brunswick harbours a wonderful, social atmosphere.

From a friendly hostel to some incredible five-star accommodations in the renovated Pentridge Prison, there are lots of places to stay here – but just getting an apartment or a house and soaking up the local suburb may be what you’re after.

Either way, there’s good transport into the city centre and your money will go a little bit further here than some of the central neighbourhoods.


The space is great with a garden and lounge, and Landing Pads Brunswick also has fun events like movie nights and dinners.


If you’re in a group, Brunswick Hill @ 3056 is a fantastic 3-bedroom apartment with modern finishings and plenty of space.

  • Quest Moonee Valley: Close to shops and dining, there are standard apartments in different sizes, with friendly and helpful staff.
  • Orangerie: A beautiful two-bedroom apartments in an old factory that’s been converted with a contemporary and stylish design.


What fun you’ll have at the quirky and colourful Dreamhouse, with two bedrooms and lots of useful amenities.

  • Stylish 3 bedroom house: A cute renovated cottage that’s really comfortable and also conveniently close to bars and cafes.


Set in a historic Victorian-era prison, Adina Apartment Hotel is an incredible remodelling of this important heritage building.

  • The Interlude: Another five-star hotel within the old Pentridge Prison, the stunning redesign and cosy rooms are pure luxury.
  • Ruckers Hill Northcote Penthouse: A stylish one-bedroom apartment with beautiful views of the neighbourhood.