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“Nice hotel but beware of the extras” 3 of 5 stars
Review of InterContinental Melbourne The Rialto

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InterContinental Melbourne The Rialto
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   495 Collins Street, Melbourne, Victoria 3000, Australia   |  
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Ranked #16 of 173 Hotels in Melbourne
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Perth, Western Australia
Top Contributor
63 reviews 63 reviews
49 hotel reviews
Reviews in 49 cities Reviews in 49 cities
119 helpful votes 119 helpful votes
“Nice hotel but beware of the extras”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 28, 2009

Having been booked into the Rialto by a client, we decided to extend the stay for a weekend in Melbourne.

Location: In Collins Street, between King and William Streets. Walking distance to the main shopping areas, the Crown entertainment complex and Southern Cross station. This is the less fashionable end of Collins St, but still quite pleasant and convenient.

The hotel itself has been constructed in the shells of two adjoining Victorian-era buildings, with an atrium between them. Most of the rooms look out into the atrium. Unfortunately, ours was on the 8th floor, at a level with the atrium roof, so the view was really spoiled.

The room was a "king deluxe" and set up for business with a desk. But there was really nowhere for the two of us to sit together. There may be other rooms more suitable for a romantic stay. A very large flat-screen TV dominated one wall. The bathroom was small but well fitted-out and the bed was extremely comfortable.

So far so good. But why is it that top class hotels continue to rip customers off with the extras? The phone (actually 3 of them in the room) is a VOIP device, which means the calls don't cost the hotel anything. So why was the local call rate $1 per minute? I didn't bother checking the internet price.

Breakfast was likewise hugely overpriced. The continental (which had a very average range of choices) was $32 per head. To make matters worse all the cereal bowls were wet and some were dirty - as if they had been rinsed but not washed since the previous use. To his credit the restaurant manager immediately took them away when this was drawn to his attention, but we cancelled our breakfast order and ate at a very nice cafe across the street.

All-in-all, this is typical of the 4 / 5 star business hotels. Great visual impact, pretty good room, good location, but spoiled by the outrageous cost of the necessary extras. I'd recommend it as somewhere to stay, based on the location and facilities.

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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1,374 reviews from our community

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  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 26, 2009

Golfing buddies and I stayed here for 4 nights. Location is great as its only a short walk to some of the major attractions. Staff were fantastic and nothing was too much trouble a special mention goes out to the Concierge for recommending a fun and outstanding Thai Restaurant which really blew us away! The rooms were beautifully appointed and though we had a couple of very small issues like the bathroom door sticking and a problem making an International call these were all rectified immediatley. Make sure you start every morning with their buffet breakfast (ours were included with the rooms) its sets you up perferctly for a busy day. One of the best Hotels I have stayed in and I have stayed in a few in my time. Looking forward to returning again in the not too distant future I hope.

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 23, 2009

5 nights, business.
I'm originally from Melbourne and know the city very well, and I've stayed at most of the brand hotels. Traveling back on business and decided to check out the recently opened (at the time) IC Melbourne. There were teething problems, but I wont comment on them as I assume they've sorted them out by now.

The location is great, for business. It is across from the stock exchange, next to the Rialto and surrounded by offices. Lots of great restaurants close by. It is NOT near shopping, (reputable) nightlife or sightseeing. If you dont mind the walk, it is about 20 minutes to Burke Street shopping and surrounds, 20 to Crown, 40 to Southbank and Federation Square. There is a tram outside though.

The rooms are nicely designed, and the bed and linens top quality. TV and sound system great, iPod doc. Nicely designed work space. But most rooms face into an atrium and even the rooms facing out dont have much of a view. And no bath. But very comfortable for a week long business trip. Breakfast is typical but quality buffet, staff are helpful.

This hotel should be bending over backwards to attract business travelers. Why on earth do they charge for internet access!!!

  • Stayed January 2009, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2009

Recently stayed at the Intercontinental for four nights. Its a lovely hotel, the rooms are very nice and the staff very helpful.
However we did have a problem with our rooms being made up. We were out each day from 9am until 4-4.30pm and would arrive back at the room and it was still not made up. Within half an hour of us returning after an exhausting day out we would get a knock on the door to make up our room so we would have to go somewhere for half an hour or so whilst they did it. This happened for the first three days and on the last day I made a point of requesting at the hotel reception that the room was made whilst we were out. I could understand if it happened on one day but it happened each day until I said something.

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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14 reviews 14 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 19, 2009

We stayed for one night at this hotel and could not fault it. We booked a Club Room and was very impressed with the size of the room and the amenities. The room was not ready, as we arrived early, so we went shopping. They called us on the mobile when the room was ready and our bags were in the room when we got there. We had afternoon tea in the Club which was lovely. We helped ourselves to food, but the tea and coffee were brought to us by the staff of the Club who, by the way, were so friendly and helful. We went for complimentary drinks in the Club prior to dinner and did not have to move from our chairs. Our drinks were delivered to us as required. We were going to go outside the hotel for dinner, but as it was so cold we chose to dine in the hotel. Glad we did as the food was awesome! My compliments to all the staff for a job well done. Will definitely stay here again and fully recommend this hotel as a great place to stay.

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Vancouver, Canada
Top Contributor
93 reviews 93 reviews
79 hotel reviews
Reviews in 64 cities Reviews in 64 cities
76 helpful votes 76 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 19, 2009

We stayed 2 nights in this hotel as part of a 16 days trip through Australia. The hotel is absolutely beautiful! Interior design is magnificent and the rooms are very new and decorated with a great mix of modern and classic touches.

The staff was very friendly and especially the concierge helped us a lot for our trips to the Great Ocean Road and the Mornington Peninsula.

A few small minor remarks: the pool and gym were a bit small. We also had to call for turndown service, which is not a big deal, but we would expect this to be done automatically.

Our experience in general was very good and this place is definitely worth a stay if your are travelling in Melbourne.

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Melbourne, Australia
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 9, 2009

This is by far the most perfect hotel experience that I have ever experienced. From check-in to check-out every single staff member that we encountered was simply sensational.

We checked in for a 2 night stay over a weekend, upon driving up there were around 12 other cars parked at the entrance and checking in. As soon as the doorman saw that we opened the boot and the luggage he came across to us. Welcomed us to the hotel, explained the Valet charges ($50 per day, which was explained to use 3 times in total) and how to call for the car and to hold onto the ticket etc etc. One thing I did notice which I have never had before when my cars have been valet parked was that they completed "damage report" for scratches/dints etc which I had to sign off.

Luggage was taken for us, and we were directed to check in. Another nice thing is that the 2 sets of doors for the hotel automatically open. Not just the standard sliding doors but nice doors that open inwards. Definitely makes it alot easier for the door guys, not having to worry about opening and closing the doors each time for everyone.

Check-in was completed in well under 2 mins, which is always a big consideration for my rating a hotel. I expect to not have to wait to check-in and expect to have my room card/key in my hand in under 3 mins. I was very warmly welcomed to the hotel (valet charges explained again, they must have received alot of complaints, while $50 is "expensive" try parking your car in the CBD area for 8 hours during the day). They upgraded us from the 1 King Premium Suite to the 1 King Iconic Suite. Not sure what the difference is as they are both 123 square metres (1323 square feet). I was asked if I would like the 4pm checkout on the Sunday and I said yes, as that is part of my status with the IC group. We were also informed of our view over Collins St and that there are not many rooms that have this view. The check-on was faultless and so easy and perfect directions given to find our room.

Up to our room which was on the 3rd floor, and around the corner, through the first set of open doors, and then to our room. We opened the doors and "WOW", this is one of the largest hotel rooms I have stayed in, and for the price it's really a bargain!

The lounge room is twice the size of a normal hotel room and would be about 60 square metres. Small LCD in the middle of the room, as that's all that would fit between the windows. Bose surround sound with iPod dock. I dislike hotels that are not up with the iPod technology yet and expect people to still use CD's! Lots of chairs, in fact around 12 people could easily sit on the chairs/lounge in the lounge room. Shame there was only 2 of us there! There was a nice welcome letter for us, with fruit, chocolates and two bottles of nice mineral water.

The mini-bar area is very nice and a good choice of drinks/snacks that were not overpriced. It was also not one of those auto-charging mini-bars which are quite frustrating personally! There is also a toilet and basin near the entrance which is great for guests! Also a nice enough view over Collins St, nothing fantastic but better that looking over the inside of the hotel that's for sure.

After around 2 mins of being in the room there was a press of the doorbell, yes a doorbell, yet again when the hotel is all nice and new/renovated the technology is much improved. Luggage was here and it was taken inside our room, the bellboy had a little trouble finding where to put the bags and he apologised that he had never been in this particular room type before, and was slightly embarrassed. We told him not to worry and that he will know for next time. He was glad that we were not all upset and caused a scene over it. He did explain where the curtain knobs were located, as they are all electronically controlled. Made it very clear that we are most welcome to call at anytime for anything and made very sure that we had everything that we needed.

The bedroom is off to the side of the lounge and there is a king sized bed and a much bigger HD LCD tv in there. The location of the tv is slighting annoying as it's not right at the end of the bed, but rather off to the right on about a 35degree angle, so it gets a little uncomfortable watching it for long in bed. The bedroom is around 35 square metres

Off to the side again is the huge bathroom. which in total was around 25 square metres. Huge long sink area with double basins, lots of amenities, the most I have ever seen in a hotel. LCD tv above the end of the bath, the shower was huge again and has lots of knobs and controls for the rainfall type shower head and the standard shower head and also the 3 massage jets. The showers were very long and enjoyable that's for sure! Also a very nice orange neon light around the top edge of the room which made for a very warm and pleasant bathroom, definitely far from standard!

Also was a huge walk-in wardrobe with two umbrellas for us to use if needed. Automatic light that turned on when you walked in and turned off after about 5 mins of no movement.

As part of this room we had free lounge access and proceeded down for drinks and canapes before our dinner. Walked in and while the lounge was fairly full there were still more than enough seats left. We were very warmly greeted and shown around and asked what we would like to drink etc etc. What made this lounge very different was that there was always 2 staff working there, that were so eager to get more food/drinks/coffee/tea for you. They didn't seem to like you having to get your own drink. Very warm and friendly service and they made an effort to speak to everyone without being annoying!

We were nearly ready to leave when several plates of canapes were bought out for us. They were explained to us and we ate them very quickly as they were simply perfect. The lounge while shown to close at 7:30 was still quite busy at 8pm when we left. I thought the "closing time" of 7:30 was a little early so it was nice to know they didn't kick you out at the time shown.

We went back upstairs and since the room was so nice, decided to order room service. The meals were perfect and could not be faulted. We were told the meals would take 25-35 minutes and they were in our room in 30 mins! Perfect once again!

A perfect nights sleep on the bed, although I was woken once from people shout in the streets below, and also early (7am) in the morning by a few trams going past. We were only 3 floors up and the soundproofing is not quite soundproof. I was woken again the next morning by trams going past again, but easily fell back asleep. This would be the only area they could have improved on when renovating the hotel (more soundproofing)

We had breakfast both mornings, in the lounge as they had more than enough for us to eat, and we couldn't justify the $40 each for breakfast when it was free in the lounge. The lounge always had room for us to sit and it was never packed like sound hotel lounges I have been in. Yet again this is another factor that I value highly when visiting hotels. Breakfast had fruit, yogurt, various toast choices, muffins, cereal, scrambled eggs, bacon, mushrooms, juices, tea, coffee and various danishes.

The pool area is very nice again and the pool was very warm, which was nice as usually hotel pools are just not quite warm enough. The spa was quite warm, the sauna perfect. The gym was also nicely equipped but we did not use it as we didn't feel the need on this trip.

This is by far one of the best, if not the best hotels I have stayed in over the years. It is a few blocks walk from the main CBD area but it was nice to walk to the shops and around for a change. Taxis are constantly out the front as a taxi rank is located there so that helped. Melbourne taxis are again shocking and the several trips that we took, the drivers simply did not know the main landmark of Melbourne, so I had to give directions.

While I didn't look at the other rooms they do appear/sound quite small so I would recommend staying in a King Executive Suite or above.

The hotel spent $60 Million renovating early this year. As a "comparison" the Grand Hyatt in Melbourne has spent $45 Million and it does not even come close to the quality, service, and the rooms at the IC Melbourne. The Grand Hyatt spent all that money on the entrance, ballroom etc etc and has not touched the dated hotel rooms. The IC Melbourne spent the money wisely and the hotel is beautiful. While I live in Melbourne and thought that 2 days would be enough, I am going to book another stay next year as I had forgotten how much there is to do in Melbourne and this hotel is simply perfect from start to finish.

IC Melbourne - The bar has been set now for my visit to your various other hotels, hopefully they are all up to your standard!

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about InterContinental Melbourne The Rialto

Address: 495 Collins Street, Melbourne, Victoria 3000, Australia
Phone Number:
Location: Australia > Victoria > Melbourne
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#7 Spa Hotel in Melbourne
#14 Family Hotel in Melbourne
#15 Romantic Hotel in Melbourne
#16 Luxury Hotel in Melbourne
#16 Business Hotel in Melbourne
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — InterContinental Melbourne The Rialto 5*
Number of rooms: 253
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Celebrated as one of the world’s hottest and best new hotels by both Conde Nast Traveler and Wallpaper* magazines, InterContinental Melbourne The Rialto is a fascinating example of the city’s fusion of old and new. InterContinental Melbourne The Rialto represents the resurrection of one of the city’s last remaining examples of 19th Century Victorian Gothic architecture into a timeless and inspiring luxury hotel. Its city centre location on Collins Street is at the heart of the laneways, attractions and experiences that give Melbourne its international appeal. Behind the Gothic façade is a sleek yet intimate hotel that is home to two very different bars – the Bluestone Wine Lounge and the Market Lane Bar – and a variety of dining establishments, including Alluvial Restaurant and Guy Grossi’s exciting new venture, Merchant. InterContinental Melbourne The Rialto has also teamed up with Shannon Bennett, providing valet parking for his new Vue de monde restaurant on the 55th floor of the adjacent Rialto building. InterContinental Melbourne The Rialto’s warmth and exceptional service belies its size, with more than 250 guest rooms across two soaring wings, including a stunning collection of suites as well as the exclusive Club InterContinental lounge and facilities for premium guests. The hotel’s rooftop is also a destination itself, home to the kitchen’s own market garden and beehives, the Scandinavian-inspired swimming pool and the glass-encased fitness centre overlooking the Melbourne cityscape. Also available is the luxurious candle-lit East Day Spa offering east-meets-west treatments and therapies. Before guests arrive, they can take advantage of the concierges’ passion and Insider knowledge of the city. Chief Concierge, James Ridenour and his team are the key to authentic experiences of the real Melbourne and everything the city has to offer. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Intercontinental Melbourne The Rialto Hotel Melbourne

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