News from the world of travel
Travel update

News from the world of travel

The AJN takes you around Australia and the world to see what’s new in travel.

voco Melbourne Central’s Blacksmith Brasserie restaurant.
voco Melbourne Central’s Blacksmith Brasserie restaurant.

New Melbourne hotel offers a touch of class

One of Melbourne’s newest hotels, voco Melbourne Central, is situated in the heart of the city and has introduced a host of eco-friendly features.

Part of the new 380 Melbourne skyscraper, it is the fourth voco hotel to open in Australia after Gold Coast (2018), Hunter Valley (2019) and Brisbane earlier this year.

While the hotel address is 374 Lonsdale Street, near Elizabeth Street, the entrance is from a laneway in Timothy Lane. Guests check in on the sixth floor in a spacious lobby – called the Sky Lobby – that is decorated with quirky bird-theme art.

The public spaces are dotted with plants, the result of a partnership with local ecological garden specialists Fytogreen.

All of the hotel’s 252 rooms have sweeping city views and a feature that will delight guests who crave for fresh air – the windows can be opened!

There’s free wifi and the rooms enjoy a modern design, king-size bed, smart TV and spectacular views from every room, even when having a shower.

Ever arrived at your hotel and discovered that you had left your toothbrush at home? voco Melbourne Central is prepared for most contingencies and has items such as nail files, toothbrushes and shaving cream available from reception free of charge if you have forgotten yours.

Instead of supplying guests with plastic drink bottles, you help yourself to a bottle of still or sparkling water that’s available free from a bar fridge near reception.

The hotel has a rooftop plunge pool and a gym with city views.

The main restaurant, open for breakfast daily, and lunch and dinner (Tuesday to Saturday) is the Blacksmith Brasserie run by South Korean executive chef Ian Lee.

Set in a light-filled space with seven-metre-high ceilings, there’s plenty of indoor seating as well as an outdoor dining area which will be popular during summer.

Tucked away nearby is the bar, one of the hotel’s popular hubs overlooking the pool terrace with a comprehensive cocktail menu, wine list and range of local beers.

voco Melbourne Central has been keen to support local suppliers, whether its ingredients for the menu, artworks for public spaces and porcelain cups in the rooms.

The hotel is situated close to the CBD retail hubs including Myer, Emporium, Melbourne Central and the Bourke Street Mall as well as the popular laneways for casual dining.

voco Melbourne Central is part of the IHG group of hotels.

For more information, visit

FBI Travel in running for national award

Melbourne travel agency FBI Travel is a finalist in this year’s National Travel Industry Awards (NTIA) in the category of Most Outstanding Travel Agency – Leisure.

It is one of five finalists vying for the award, to be announced at a gala ceremony in Sydney on October 15.

The NTIA is run by the Australian Federation of Travel Agents and recognises and rewards excellence in the Australian travel industry.

FBI Travel said in a statement: “We are honoured to be recognised as a finalist for the amazing work the team have done over the last few years, especially during the COVID-19 border closures to repatriate thousands of fellow Australians who were isolated and stuck across the globe and in desperate need to get home to their loved ones.

“Despite constant failures, the team stayed motivated to keep trying for every person (mostly strangers) that reached out for help, using their skills and years of industry experience to guide and assist people back to our shores.”

read more: