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Westin Brisbane Reception

One of the latest big name hotels to arrive in the Queensland capital is The Westin Brisbane. Located in the heart of the city, this hotel is predominantly aimed at business travellers, with all the boxes ticked for busy and time poor corporate warriors. That’s not to say you can’t have a great staycation here – we certainly did – but you will probably be sharing it with plenty of suits if you visit mid-week. Arriving for a one night wedding anniversary stay, my first impression is the hotel is very luxurious but also a typically corporate Westin. The Westin Brisbane does have some beautiful elements with additional flair like the pool area and spa but it remains firmly centred on business. However, this clientelle ensures the hotel is up to speed on all the key service areas which matter to everyone, not just those travelling for work.

Westin Brisbane Reception
Westin Brisbane Reception

One aspect of this hotel that I really loved is the new fresh feel and smell, from the crisp linens to the ultra clean rooms and public areas. Another is the staff who were friendly and efficient, something that can be lacking with some new hotels as employees struggle to find their feet. Our arrival at The Westin Brisbane was smooth and the reception staff had us checked in and given a brief rundown of amenities in a matter of minutes. We stayed in a Westin Renewal City Suite for our wedding anniversary, a generously appointed room with a separate lounge area and super luxe bathroom. The Westin Brisbane has 260 guest rooms and 39 suites with a selection of six accommodation categories, ranging from a standard king room to executive lounge rooms and large suites, plus a two bedroom penthouse apartment.

Westin Brisbane King Room
Westin Brisbane King Room

Rooms range in size and location (which can impact the outlook due to the surrounding office blocks) and some of the accommodation options include extras like executive lounge access. Our Renewal Suite, with its large rain shower and luxurious tub, seemed to be aimed at the staycation and leisure market rather than corporate travellers. It was perfect for our weekend getaway and is worth the splurge for yours.

Westin Cheesecake
This Westin Brisbane anniversary treat was a lovely surprise

Weekend rates tend to be cheaper than weekday stays when hotel is popular with the corporate market. This makes The Westin Brisbane ideal for a weekend staycation if you’re a romantic whose love of luxury is larger than your wallet. Rooms are styled in a soothing colour palette of creams, greys, and browns and well sized at an average 36sqm. All the standard five star hotel features are included, from a large flat screen TV to mini bar and, now almost considered a must-have in five star hotels, an in-room espresso machine.

Club Westin Renewal Suite Lounge Room
Club Westin Renewal Suite Lounge Room

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Westin Brisbane balcony
Balcony room at The Westin Brisbane

Being located in the heart of the Brisbane CBD, The Westin Brisbane is extremely central and handy to everything the city has to offer. The downside of the central location is the lack of views, apart from the multi-storey offices and apartments which surround the hotel. Our Renewal Suite had a large balcony but no furniture (and no suitable seats in the room which could do double duty as outdoor furniture) so there was no way sit outside. However, this wasn’t a problem as it was a too cool to sit outdoors during our stay at the hotel.

There is a work desk and ergonomic chair and plenty of electrical outlets installed in all the right spots, plus USB sockets which every traveller will appreciate, not just those travelling for business. Perhaps the most critical feature of all is the signature Westin Heavenly Bed in each room, which comes with a complimentary lavender pillow mist which is yours to take home. We had a superb night’s rest at this hotel, sleeping in much later than we usually do.

Whether you’re travelling for business or leisure, the resort style pool with its swim up bar, elevated day beds, and stone sun loungers that are partially submerged in water, has a major wow factor. This watery oasis in the heart of the CBD is the perfect spot to soak away your stress and enjoy a poolside snack from paddock-to-plate Westin Brisbane restaurant Eden’s Table.

Westin Pool with swim up bar
The Westin Brisbane pool with swim up bar

Next door the Heavenly Spa has a menu filled with luxurious treatments that conclude with a soothing cup of herbal tea and fruity chocolate truffles. My wife had a facial which she said was superb but her treatment didn’t get off to a great start as the spa was out of robes. Instead of sitting in the plush relaxation area enjoying a cup of herbal tea, she sat in the ladies’ change room waiting for them to be delivered, which happened after her treatment was due to start. A rare misstep in what was an otherwise excellent spa experience.

The Westin Brisbane Heavenly Spa
The Westin Brisbane Heavenly Spa

The Westin Brisbane hits the mark for both business and leisure travellers with its focus on fitness and after work wind down. Many of the fitness options go above and beyond the usual hotel offerings, such as the innovative Westin “Workout Gear Lending with Westin + New Balance” program. The program lets travellers loan shoes, tops, pants and even a sports bra for the cost of $5 which costs less than the Workout Kit’s brand new pair of socks which you get to keep.

If you’re travelling with carry-on, this option is particularly good as it’s hard to squeeze sneakers and a workout kit into an overnight bag (that’s my excuse, anyway). Next is the sizable gym area and complimentary Pilates and yoga classes and a picturesque guided five-kilometre jog along the Brisbane River with the hotel’s Run Westin Concierge. Hardcore fitness junkies can request a personal trainer and access to the EVOLT 360, a state of the art body measurement and analysis machine, at an added cost.

Westin Brisbane Gym Run Concierge
Westin Brisbane Gym Run Concierge

We skipped the gym in favour of The Westin Brisbane executive lounge which is available to guests staying in executive lounge rooms and all suites. The executive lounge area has a corporate feel with bistro-style seating and a few lounges, and access to a number of tempting club amenities. These include free wi-fi, non-alcoholic beverages and cookies available throughout the day, buffet breakfast, and an evening drinks and canapes service between 5pm and 7pm which includes beer, wine and spirits plus a hot food selection.

The Westin Brisbane club Lounge
The Westin Brisbane club Lounge

The food on offer was impressive, with a nicely balanced mix of decadent and more healthy options. Desserts come out towards the end of the evening service and are delicious. We especially enjoyed the petite baked cheesecakes. Wining and dining at The Westin Brisbane is catered for at three venues. ‘The Charles’, an open air, Queensland-styled aviation-themed jazz bar, is located on the ground floor and transitions from a café during the day to a wine and cocktail bar in the evening.

Westin Brisbane The Charles' Cafe/Bar
The Westin Brisbane The Charles’ Cafe/Bar
Westin Brisbane Eden Restaurant
Westin Brisbane Eden Restaurant

The Westin Brisbane’s signature restaurant is bistro style Eden’s Table with a menu inspired from locally sourced produce from the ocean and paddock to the plate. The restaurant was closed for dinner on the public holiday night that we visited which was a shame. However, breakfast the following morning was superb, with some of the best lattes we’ve ever had at a hotel. Even better, they’re available at no additional charge.

Westin Brisbane Eden Restaurant
The Westin Brisbane Eden Restaurant buffet breakfast

There is also the swim-up Nautilus Pool Bar at the hotel’s fabulous pool, where burgers, sandwiches, salads, etc are served poolside. Overall, The Westin Brisbane is a welcome addition to Brisbane’s hotel scene, with features that will appeal to both business and leisure travellers. If you want to extend your business trip with a leisure stay over the weekend, The Westin Brisbane is a great choice.

Disclosure: The writers stayed as guests of The Westin Brisbane.

If you’re after some things to do in Brisbane, try some of our favourite activities along the Brisbane River, take a Brisbane Greeters free tour of West End, or buy unique handmade souvenirs at Brisbane’s best markets.

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Trevor Templeman is a photographer and writer who travels the world capturing the essence of locations through their landscape, architecture and people. His words and photographs are published in magazines, newspapers and online around the world.