Pan Pacific Hotel in Melbourne

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Updated: August 26, 2020

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Review of Pan Pacific Melbourne Hotel.

Pan Pacific Melbourne – Central, quiet, and riverside with fantastic views.

The former Hilton hotel ticks all the right boxes. It overlooks the river (one of very few that do); is so convenient to the city center and facilities like the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre; is surrounded by upmarket shops and cafés, and most rooms and suites offer extended views along the river. Yet, remarkably, the Pan Pacific is in an area with virtually no traffic, so it’s astoundingly quiet. Most categories of accommodations look fairly similar inside and feature all the expected mod-cons, while some suites have kitchenettes and two bedrooms and bathrooms, so they’re ideal for families.

Pan Pacific Melbourne – The Location

  • Address: 2 Convention Centre Place, South Wharf. In an area popularly called Southbank.
  • Area: Lovely, quiet, and just over the river by pedestrian bridge from the southwest corner of the city center. In front of the hotel is a collection of shops, cafés, and bars, and about 0.5 mile (10-minute walk) further along via a riverside path is the incredible Crown Casino complex.
  • How to Get There: Taxis to/from the airport (15 miles, 1-hour drive) cost around A$70. For about A$20, SkyBus (every 30-60 minutes, 6 am-7 pm daily) links the airport with the convention center which is virtually next to the hotel. Otherwise, Starbus shuttles (5 am-10 pm daily) travel directly between the airport and the hotel (about A$30).
  • Handy to: Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre (direct access from the 1st floor of the hotel)

Pan Pacific Melbourne – The Basics

  • Guests: Many guests stay here to attend events at the adjoining convention center.
  • Pets: Not permitted.
  • Views: With the low-level convention center alongside, views are extensive from all angles. Views of the river are better, while views of the suburbs and freeway are less impressive.
  • Kitchen: The 2-bedroom suites feature kitchenettes.
  • Private Pools/Jacuzzi: Not expected (or provided) at this sort of inner-city hotel.
  • Extras: Some rooms and suites include Club Lounge access and free breakfast. Free use of computers for all guests in a dedicated area at the lobby.
  • Wi-Fi: Quick, reliable, and included free for all guests.
  • Parking: Self-parking for a reasonable cost in the convention center car park. Valet parking for twice as much.
  • How to Book: Booking.com will have the best rates.
  • Phone: +61 (0)3 9027 2000
  • Email: [email protected]
  • Website: panpacific.com

Pan Pacific Melbourne – Amenities

  • Pool: Surprisingly, there isn’t one.
  • Spa: None, but a spa is very rare among inner-city hotels like this.
  • Fitness Center: Modest size but should satisfy most. Open 24 hours.
  • For Families: Good-value package deals for families. Baby-sitting.
  • Other Facilities: Business center. ATM. Laundry. Car rental. Minimart.

Pan Pacific Melbourne – Food and Drink

  • Restaurant & Bar: Dock 37 Bar & Kitchen – Refined setting with suspended walk-through ‘wine gantry’ (cellar/pantry). Modern Australian cuisine, cozy seating, and terrific service. For buffet breakfast and a la carte dinner.
  • Cafe: Café Orr – Casual coffee shop also serving sandwiches, pastries, and juices. Inside and along a terrace near the main entrance. Closes at 3 pm.
  • Breakfast: Not normally included, but can be, depending on the room and how it was booked.
  • Room Service: Available 24 hours.

Pan Pacific Melbourne – Rooms

  • Room Types: Deluxe Rooms • Family Queen Rooms • Two Bedroom City Skyline Suites • Two Bedroom Bay View Suites • Premier King City Skyline Rooms • Pacific Club King Rooms • Yarra Suites • Panoramic Suites
  • Smoking Rooms: No smoking allowed anywhere on the hotel premises.
  • Best Room: Over twice the size of most other rooms, the amazing Yarra Suites offer extended floor-to-ceiling windows for jaw-dropping views from the upper floors.
  • For Families: The special Family Queen Rooms are no larger than the standard rooms, but each features a queen bed and a single. The Two Bedroom Suites – each with a living/dining room, kitchenette, and 2 bathrooms – are more than spacious enough for families of 4.

Pan Pacific Melbourne – Local Transport

  • Walking & Cycling: The riverside paths in both directions are flat, lined with bars, bistros, and boutiques, and ideal for strolling and cycling. Use the riverside paths around the Southbank and South Wharf areas and avoid the city center.
  • Public Transport: Not as convenient to the excellent inner-city tram system as other hotels in downtown. The closest tram stop to the hotel is on Flinders Street (0.5 mile, 9-minute walk). Every few minutes, trams shuttle along the streets of the city center and to suburban areas like South Yarra, Docklands, and St Kilda Beach. All trams within the city center and to Docklands are free.
  • Taxis & Ride-shares: Arrange a taxi through reception or find one along the streets. Uber and Ola operate all over Melbourne.

Pan Pacific Melbourne – What’s Nearby?

Restaurants & Bars

    Best range is along a precinct called South Wharf, literally outside the hotel. All bars and bistros are competitively-priced and some offer the city’s happiest hours.

  • Charlie Lovett – Popular among locals for its stylish setting and lovingly-made coffee. 2-minute walk (0.1 mile).
  • Akachochin – Award-winning, contemporary Japanese cuisine and classy service. Famous for its marble bar and popular for set-price lunch menus. 3-minute walk (0.2 mile).
  • BangPop – Colorful tables, funky setting, and upmarket versions of Thai street food. Cooking classes available. 3-minute walk (0.2 mile).
  • The General Assembly – Retains features of the original wharf and warehouse. Hearty steaks, locally-crafted beer, and sociable staff. 4-minute walk (0.2 mile).
  • The Boatbuilders Yard – Plenty of wooden tables inside and out. Wins awards for its nautical-style setting and good-value meals. 5-minute walk (0.2 mile).

Shops

    Only meters from the hotel, DFO South Wharf (50m, 1-minute walk) is part of a citywide chain offering top brands at lower-than-expected prices. Several shops can be found in the city center just across the river (0.7 mile, 15-minute walk), or east along Southbank via the riverside path (0.5 mile, 10-minute walk).

Pan Pacific Melbourne – The Hotel

The hotel is by the convention center.

The Pan Pacific looms over the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre in an inner-city area called Southbank.

The hotel is popular with tourists.

Once part of the Hilton chain, the hotel is popular among business people and tourists alike.

The lobby is very appealing.

The lobby is instantly appealing.

The common areas sometimes have art exhibitions.

The lobby and guest lounges often feature exhibitions of contemporary art.

The hotel also holds exhibitions of works by indigenous artists.

Another area within the hotel also regularly hosts collections of arts and crafts; in this case, by indigenous artists.

Guests get to use computers for free.

Unusual among rival hotels is a dedicated area offering free use of computers for guests.

Guests with Club Lounge access get special benefits.

Guests with Club Lounge access also enjoy special benefits such as free breakfast.

Café Orr is by the hotel entrance.

Alongside the hotel entrance, with tables inside and out, is Café Orr.

Dock 37 Bar & Kitchen has a wine cellar.

As well as colorful furniture and a sleek décor, Dock 37 Bar & Kitchen also has a suspended walk-through wine cellar/pantry.

Deluxe Rooms are spacious and comfortable.

The Deluxe Rooms are unfussy but comfortable, and certainly more spacious than most other hotels of this standard.

Many accommodations offer river views.

Views from many rooms and suites extend along the Yarra River through the city center.

Corner Suites offer better views.

Suites in the corner of the hotel offer even more spectacular views of the river, city, and convention center.

Some accommodations overlook the freeway and suburbs.

Views facing the freeway and suburbs are not as appealing as those of the river and city.

The 2-bedroom suites come with separate living areas.

The 2-bedroom suites feature separate living areas and twice the windows for double the views.

Some suite bathrooms also offer good views.

Even the bathrooms in some suites offer sublime views of the city.

South Wharf has several bistros and bars.

At the hotel entrance is a stretch of cafés and bars in an area called South Wharf.

The Boatbuilders Yard is a great bar and café.

The largest among several bistro/bars along the river very close to the hotel is The Boatbuilders Yard.

Akachochin is an award-winning Japanese restaurant.

Like other eateries in South Wharf, the Japanese restaurant, Akachochin, provides plastic ‘windows’ for wintry days.

BangPop is a quirky Thai cafe.

The Thai café, BangPop, also in South Wharf is very likable and quirky.

Charlie Lovett is a lovely cafe-bar on South Wharf.

Another delightful café-cum-bar close by is Charlie Lovett.

DFO mall has stores of several international brands.

An attraction of staying at the hotel for some overseas visitors is the proximity to the DFO mall. It is full of outlets selling international brands at lower-than-usual prices.

The Yarra Riverfront is very beautiful.

Strolling alongside the Yarra River which the hotel faces is always very pleasant, especially further east.

The Crown Casino complex is nearby.

The remarkable Crown Casino complex is east along the Southbank area from the Pan Pacific.

A pedestrian bridge connects the hotel to the city center.

This pedestrian bridge, only meters from the hotel, crosses the Yarra River and leads to the city center.

South Wharf offers great views.

Views of the city center are particularly attractive from the South Wharf area in front of the hotel.

Trams in the city center are free.

Trams which stop about half a mile from the hotel are free all over the city center.

Regular trams connect the hotel to the city center.

Most amenities and historical buildings around the city center are less than a mile from the hotel by foot or tram.

The convention center is next to the hotel.

The hotel is next to the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre.

The express SkyBus is the best way to and from the airport.

The cheapest way to reach the hotel from the airport is by the frequent SkyBus.

The Starbus shuttle service offers great airport connectivity.

More direct between the hotel and airport is the Starbus shuttle service.

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