By Lachlan Probyn

Best hotel mini-bars: where to stay

Monday, 13 February 2017 11

When it comes to staying in a hotel, what’s the selling point for you? Some guests fall smitten with a dreamy pillow-top bed, while others simply can’t resist a rainfall shower and luxury bathroom amenities.

But what about the humble mini-bar that normally sits in the corner of a room and comes with an accompanying menu of overpriced beverages and snacks? These days, hotels are reinventing the concept of a mini-bar, offering room fridges filled with top-notch cheeses, quality wines, and even intimacy kits! Here we’ve compiled a list of some of our favourite hotel mini-bars certain to give you a memorable stay.

QT Hotel – Sydney

From the moment you enter QT Sydney, you know you’re in for a good stay. Cross the threshold and enter a wonderland of art and style thanks to an eclectic blend of lavish colours, patterns, and textures. If you think this is just the beginning, wait until you discover the mini-bar which comes stocked with all the essential snack, drink, game, and sex needs. We’re talking a robust offering of premium spirits including Belvedere vodka, organic beetroot chips, and old school games like pick up sticks.

If QT has left you feeling a tad naughty, the mini-bar will only enhance this thanks to its emergency ‘intimacy-kit’, which offers all the necessary items to get you started. Think lube, blindfolds, and condoms, ooh la la! If you’re in need of a little more energy, why not get your caffeine fix from the Patron XO coffee liquor provided?

After the all the fun, you can retreat in your super swish bathroom with comes with a deep dreamy bathtub and Malin and Goetz amenities. Could a hotel stay ever be so easy?

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Adelphi hotel – Melbourne

For those already familiar with Melbourne’s Adelphi Hotel, you may initially think of the hotel’s unusual but equally fabulous rooftop pool. But the hotel goes beyond this, most notably thanks to its vast offering of room freebies and well-stocked mini-bar. Here you can settle into your Manhattan-style room all the while appreciating a thoughtful mix of sweet and savoury snacks, Lavazza Amodo Mio coffee, T-Bar tea, and Appelles bathroom amenities.

After you’ve checked in, head across to in-house dessert bar, Om Nom, and wash down your complimentary welcome drink in the company of stunning large-scale oil paintings produced by established and emerging artists. In the evening retreat to your room, which is reminiscent of a lavish boudoir even Ms. Marilyn Monroe couldn’t say no to.

We’re talking liquorice all-sorts style printed carpet, minimalist furnishings, and state-of-the art appliances including a BOSE iPod docking station. We’re not going to lie to you, this place will be difficult to check out of!

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MONA Pavilions – Hobart

While MONA may be more commonly associated with experimental and provocative modern art, it now has another string to its already iconic bow – MONA Pavilions. Positioned on the edge of the River Derwent, these stellar pavilions are making a name for themselves thanks to their contemporary design, luxury features, and acclaimed mini-bar.

Here you can say goodbye to the typical meagre mini-bar of the 80s and hello to a fully-fledged private cellar stocked with Moorilla wine, Moo Brew beer, and Hendricks gin. This mini-bar come cellar is so damn fine that MONA Pavilions was even recognised as a best hotel mini-bar finalist by the Gourmet Traveller Awards in 2016. As you sip a tasty Moorilla Syrah, marvel at the stunning selection of artwork from the MONA collection adorning the walls and pinch yourself to reassure you that this truly is reality.

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Ovolo 1888- Sydney

Ovolo 1888 has well and truly made a name for itself in Sydney’s hotel landscape, and it’s not just because it’s housed in a converted wool store built in 1888. Although we must admit that’s pretty cool too! At Ovolo the expression ‘the best things in life are free’ certainly holds true, as the hotel’s offering of delectable freebies is enough to make anyone want to stay the night. Think a mini-bar which is replenished daily with beer and wine, and a welcome Loot Bag of snacks including Tim Tams – delicious!

Anyone who has a keen interest in photography will be simply smitten with Ovolo, this place is a photographer’s dream. The hotel creatively blends the building’s former industrial features with a contemporary fit-out. Think bold graffiti-style feature walls and lavish furnishings alongside exposed stone and timber. How Brooklyn!

If the mini-bar’s wine and beer are not enough, head downstairs to LoLounge, and lock your lips around a creatively prepared cocktail.

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Pumphouse Point – Tasmania

When you’re positioned in the middle of a glacial lake amidst the World Heritage wilderness of Tasmania, you’re certainly going to want a well-stocked mini-bar. All this is and more is possible at Pumphouse Point. Housed in a former pump house, 250 metres out on Lake Saint Clair, the 18 luxurious rooms are positioned over three levels and offer a refined Scandinavian aesthetic.

Thanks to the in-room mini-bar come larder, you can divulge on gourmet treats which include pate, smoked chicken, cured meats, and olives. It comes as little surprise then that Gourmet Traveller also recognised Pumphouse Point as a best mini-bar finalist. If you’re planning to venture into the wilderness with your respective other for the day, you can also make use of the tasty lunch boxes that can be prepared upon request.

As your day concludes, rest tired muscles in the über-luxe bathrooms that comprise heated flooring, rain showers, and Grown Alchemist bathroom amenities. Heavenly!

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The Franklin Boutique – Adelaide

For many Australians, the ideal combo is a shower and beer. The Franklin Boutique in Adelaide is well aware of this perfect marriage, and has developed accommodation which offers a free mini-bar stacked with bottled beer as well as luxurious ensuite bathrooms to steam up in. But the freebies here go beyond a mini-bar full of beer – we’re talking a surprise snack box to nurse rumbling tummies as well as a super swish Nespresso machine. Because let’s face it, we all need a good caffeinated fix to start our morning in the right way.

Housed in grungy operating pub in the heart of Adelaide, The Franklin Boutique offers seven individually styled rooms that reflect an industrial-chic aesthetic. Appreciate unique and locally produced artwork flanking the walls, then settle in for the evening with a flick on your wall-mounted flat-screen TV. If you find yourself with a hankering for food, you only need to venture downstairs to the bar where you can sample a classic pub menu of fish n’ chips and chicken schnitzels.

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If you love the idea of economising for your next hotel stay here’s 13 hotel hacks to get you started.

Lachlan Probyn
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Originally from Australia, Lachlan moved to Europe 4 years ago to fulfill his burning travel bug. He's lived in Toulouse and Rome, and is now excited to be in Dusseldorf. On weekends he likes to discover new coffee shops and breakfast locales, and of course there needs to be some time for Saturday night dancing. So far, his favourite country is France - nowhere else can beat the fabulous pastries!