In August, 2014 my girlfriend and I spent two weeks in Australia. We generally aim to travel at least twice a year, and our “sweet spot” for hotels is the local currency’s equivalent of $200 CAD/night—bonus points if breakfast is included. As serviced apartments are apparently quite popular in Australia (and less expensive than “hotels” proper) we decided on two Punthill properties—the Punthill Little Bourke in Melbourne and the Punthill Brisbane in, well… Brisbane.
This is a review of the Punthill Brisbane.
We arrived late in the afternoon via a cab from the airport and were attended to immediately. Check-in took a bit longer than one might expect, but only because we were paying for everything up front. Within a few minutes we had our breakfast coupons and were in the elevator on the way up to our 10th floor room.
The difference between this property and our last Punthill stay (at the Little Bourke in Melbourne) was like night and day. The room itself may have been smaller (certainly the bathroom), but everything seemed more modern—funky, even. No washer/dryer but a perfectly usable kitchen, comfy bed and big-screen TV mounted on the opposite wall.
Unbeknownst to us our stay coincided with a national holiday; the night before the restaurant downstairs closed down to honour that holiday the owners of the hotel packed a pair of cold breakfasts—muffins, yogurt and fruit—into our refrigerator… Quite thoughtful, that!
Location-wise the Punthill was number two of our top three choices. The Manor Apartment Hotel sits right on Queen Street, and much closer to the Queen Street Mall. But from the photos here on TripAdvisor it looks pretty run-down, and a breakfast room is certainly no substitute for a full-on restaurant. The Meriton on Herschel seemed about as far away from the Queen Street Mall as the Punthill, but it seems to have no on-site breakfast at all. If you hadn’t already figured it out, I like my hotel breakfasts.
Getting to Queen Street on foot was made much easier by a shortcut through the train station, which the staff patiently talked us through; by our second morning there it was second nature. It was about a ten-minute walk for us, maybe a bit longer on the way back as it was uphill. No big deal in any case.
There is a restaurant connected to the hotel called Jak + Hill. It’s fantastic. Were it not for that national holiday my girlfriend and I would have made our way through the entire breakfast menu during our stay. We even had dinner there one night and weren’t disappointed. The breakfast coupons certainly helped, but we probably would’ve taken our daily breakfasts there either way.
In fact, if I remember correctly, visitors staying at other apartment hotels on the same street came to eat at Jak + Hill as well. I’d probably do the same.
Would we visit Brisbane again? Maybe. If we did, would we stay again at the Punthill Brisbane? Absolutely.
Location is the only possible point of contention in this otherwise fantastic property and as I’ve said, it’s really not that big of an issue. And if you do end up staying closer to the CBD you certainly won’t regret coming up to Jak + Hill for breakfast!