I stayed at Novotel on Collins because it is very central.
Check-in was a breeze and the front office staff very helpful and friendly.
First timers might find, with Reception several floors up, that check-in is a bit confusing as you have to take one lift to get to Reception and another to your room.
Public transport (trams) go past the front door and some of the best shops are either next door or in Bourke Street, one block away.
I went to the football at the MCG which is my reason for the stay.
The room was excellent and the bed very comfortable.
Only complaint, lifts very noisy.