Rosie Herdman stays at Hotel Lindrum in Melbourne.
Travelling from Melbourne airport, you can either take the SkyBus into the city, hop on a tram briefly then walk for five minutes or, if you’re in a car, it takes between 30 minutes to an hour, depending on traffic. It took me only half an hour to get into the city at 6.30pm.
Check-in: Duck into the entrance-way of the red brick building, up the stairs (there’s a contraption to help with heavy bags if need be), help yourself to some welcome tea at reception and head up to your room.
Room: My second-floor Studio room was a calm, high-ceilinged haven, decked out in cream tones with a large bed, Samsung smart TV, desk and chair, mini fridge, kettle with tea and coffee facilities and an en suite.Waiting at the foot of the bed was a care package for female travellers as part of the Inspired by Her service run by MGallery By Sofitel hotels that includes an “emergency kit” of staples often forgotten in the rush of packing. There’s Wi-Fi in all the rooms, and in the restaurant and lobby.
Price: From $285 to $395 per night.
Good: This is an inner-city boutique hotel that has character, and the staff make it their goal to ensure you feel welcome and taken care of at all times.
Bad: Not much — the only mildly negative thing I could say is that although the bathroom was tidy, it was a little dated.
Exercise facilities: Guests at Hotel Lindrum are able to use the gym at the Sofitel 250m away — up on the 36th floor, it’s a beautiful view while you sweat.
What’s in the neighbourhood? So much. There are cafes, bars, shopping and cultural attractions within a few minutes’ walk or short tram ride away, including the National Gallery of Victoria.
Food and drink? The airy downstairs dining room is home to Felt Restaurant, with a new British-inspired menu by English chef Matthew Simon Bentley. It comprises contemporary takes on classic Brit fare and you’ll find chicken and black pudding terrine, Berkshire pork belly, a creamy Barramundi fish dish with saffron and mussels, and, for dessert, lavender creme brulee, apricot crumble and a classic Eccles cake served with blue cheese. The drinks list offers a host of Australian beers and wines as well as international options.
The bed: Large and comfortable.
Bathroom: Simple and fine apart from the aforementioned dated-ness. It was well-equipped with a hair dryer, organic beauty products from Appelles Apothecary, dental kit and sanitary products.
Noise: Surprisingly little for an inner-city hotel.
Perfect for: Visitors to Melbourne who want a central hotel with soul.
Would I return? Certainly.