Hotel Portarlington | Melbourne City List

Do you dream of a cozy winter getaway? The Grand Hotel in Portarlington underwent a multi-million dollar renovation and is welcoming guests again in August. Established in 1888, renovations will return the historic site to its former glory, as one of Port Phillip Bay’s most popular destinations.

Located just 70 minutes by ferry from Docklands, Portarlington is one of Victoria’s best kept secrets. The charming seaside town is the perfect place to explore the Bellarine Peninsula wine country, spend time by the water and indulge in locally caught mussels, fresh from the bay.

The boutique hotel has 18 newly renovated rooms, most with water views across the bay that you can enjoy from your private balcony. The brains to Techne Architecturewhose work you might recognize in some of Melbourne’s iconic locations; Garden State Hotel, Richmond Club Hotel and The last stop, were enlisted to lead the transformations. The rooms perfectly combine the hotel’s 19th century heritage with a contemporary luxury feel to bring it into the 21st century.

The hotel has also transformed its dining rooms, creating a paradise for day-trippers, vacationers and locals. For a classic pub fare paired with local Bellarine beer and wine, you can head to ‘the beating heart of the hotel’, the bistro. There’s a bar out front where you can work your way through an extensive wine list while enjoying a platter of fresh seafood. If you fancy a more casual drink, the Atrium is a beer garden overlooking the water serving wood-fired pizzas in an outdoor kitchen. Furry friends can enjoy The Lawn, a family-friendly space with picnic tables where you can order directly from the bistro menu.

Portarlington can be reached by ferry or car, approximately 90 minutes from Melbourne. With some of the best liquor and produce in the state, there’s no shortage of things to do while you’re away. For wine lovers, do not hesitate to head to Bennetts on Bellarine, Scottish hill and Domain of Terindahand for those who prefer a gin and tonic, Distillerie Bellarine has it all.

While renovations have been made to transform the Portarlington Grand Hotel into a haven of luxury for visitors, the owners have retained some of its most charming features. Including an old school bell that rings half an hour before the last ferry leaves…just in time for one last wine.

The hotel is accepting reservations starting Aug. 1, 2022, with rooms starting at $250 a night. Learn more here.

Image credit: Nikole Ramsay

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