The giant crystal chandeliers that hang above a six-tiered marble fountain in the opulent foyer of Southbank’s The Langham set the tone for a stay at Melbourne’s grande dame of luxury accommodation. The Langham’s classic charm – it dates back to 1865 when the first hotel opened in London, attracting royalty among its guests – begins with the bowler-hatted concierge who greets you at your car and continues throughout the property’s 24 floors in elegant guestrooms, stylish bars and restaurants, plus the indulgent Chuan Spa.
One of the best things to do in Melbourne is to meander along the Yarra River, which makes The Langham’s Southbank Promenade location ideal. A short stroll to the arts precinct, it is close enough for everything you need while remaining within its own oasis of calm.
While the Langham group was originally known in the 1870s for its unique indulgences – “Electric lights! Air conditioning! Hydraulic lifts!” it boasted – the modern indulgences in the Melbourne hotel (which opened in 2005) come in the form of considered comfort. There are 388 rooms, including the newly released Residence by Kerrie Hess, a specially designed suite for the fashion and art lover. French- provincial style décor in neutral tones of beige and pale green keeps the rooms warm and inviting, while a marble bathroom amps up the luxe effect.
Food and drink
The hotel boasts several dining options – including Melba restaurant, which recently introduced Seasoned Harvest with 70 per cent locally sourced produce – and the Aria lounge which is popular for high tea thanks to its vintage glamour. But the hidden gem is the Club Lounge, high up on the 24th floor where the mixed buffet includes everything from made-on-demand chicken tikka wraps, apple and pancetta sausage and sushi to an endless selection of antipasti and cheese. Settle into one of the lounge chairs in a cosy private nook as Michael Buble pipes through the loud speakers.
For business travellers
Meeting rooms, boardrooms and an event space and conference facilities cater to the business traveller. Alternatively there are many areas, from discreet spaces on the podium level to the club lounge on level 24, for a more relaxed business meeting over coffee or drinks.
For wellness travellers
For the fitness lovers the Langham’s gym is open 6am-9pm or for those who prefer a less high-intensity wellness experience, there’s Chuan spa, which encourages guests to try the tri-bathing ritual before any treatment – spa, sauna, shower.
The fab factor
The outdoor area at the Chuan spa is a welcome surprise, not only for a spot of private sun-lounging, but for its Instagram-worthy views over the Yarra and Flinders Street Station and Melbourne city skyline.
Best for: Luxury travellers and romantic couples
Number of rooms: 388 rooms and suites
From: $295 per night
Parking: Valet parking available up to $69 per night
Address: 1 Southgate Avenue, Southbank (Melbourne)
Telephone: 03 9686 8888