Whether you’re a first-timer to the Best Coast or you’re looking to explore some new parts of town, it can be tricky to know where to set up base camp. If you’re not sure which part of Perth is the right vibe for you, we’ve put together a handy run-down on just a few of the options.
Home to the lion’s share of Perth’s bars, clubs, theatres, and restaurants spanning every cuisine and price point, staying in Northbridge is perfect for anyone who wants to feel like they’re in the thick of it. You’ll also be conveniently close to the city’s foremost museums and art galleries, plus the cute boutiques along William Street – stroll further north to Hyde Park, as well as the cute brunch spots and bakeries of Highgate and Mount Lawley.
Where to stay: Alex Hotel is on the doorstep to the Cultural Centre – not only amongst the action of Northbridge, but moments away from the CBD and Perth train station for easy access to the rest of the city. Pop downstairs to Shadow Wine Bar for a nightcap or a decadent Italian feast.
DoubleTree by Hilton is also only moments away on James Street – similarly in the thick of the Northbridge action, you can take in the city skyline from their rooftop pool.
If you prefer to keep self-contained, this heritage townhouse is full of quirky charm, and is right on Northbridge’s doorstep – nestled between West Perth, Highgate and the CBD, you’ll have easy access to plenty of the area’s best restaurants and cafés.
Ideal for: Foodies, party animals and culture vultures
Money never sleeps, baby! The city is Perth’s business centre, but there’s still plenty of fun to be had, with dozens of amazing restaurants, cocktail bars and killer coffee to keep you fuelled (and a few hidden gems). If you need to keep the grind going, there are heaps of co-working spaces throughout the city (WeWork, Spacecubed, Liberty, Level Nine and many more) – but you’ll also be at the epicentre of Perth’s public transport system, so you can easily jump on the train and explore the suburbs that are further afield.
Where to stay: COMO The Treasury is an elegant oasis in the heart of the city. Exuding old-school luxury, the State Buildings are home to fine dining, excellent coffee and two of Perth’s best book and record stores (Edicole and Shari-Vari) – as well as their lush spa, COMO Shambhala. All under one roof!
The Ritz-Carlton cuts a striking silhouette along the Swan River, evoking timeless luxury and providing all the amenities you’d expect from a 5-star hotel. Set within a stunning building on Elizabeth Quay, the infinity pool has unparalleled views across the river and city skyline. Jump aboard the ferry that runs between Elizabeth Quay and South Perth to explore the city on the water – it’ll only cost you a couple of bucks on your Smartrider!
Ideal for: Business babes and luxe lovers
Our beloved port city, Freo feels like a world away from the Perth CBD. Charming historical, leafy streets are filled with equally charming cafés and restaurants, and you’re temptingly close to the beach. Only one stop away on the train, North Freo is home to live music mecca Mojos and even more good eating and drinking, while South Freo’s vibe is honestly, unmatched. An afternoon at Madalena’s soaking up the sun (and a few glasses of wine) after a soothing swim at South Beach? We cannot emphasise it enough: it’s heaven.
Where to stay: Small but mighty, Hougoumont‘s thoughtful touches take it to the next level. While the hotel’s been constructed utilising stacked shipping containers, the finishes are luxurious – with thoughtful, understated touches that make the experience all the more enjoyable, like toiletries by Appelles Apothecary, luxury bedding, or the pillow menu that ensures you’ll be resting easy.
Just down the road, the Warders Hotel is the Hougoumont’s little sister – in both age and in size. With only 11 rooms, the hotel truly showcases Fremantle’s unique heritage architecture. Occupying the limestone cottages that once housed Fremantle Prison Warders, rooms have been meticulously restored and luxuriously outfitted. Each room has features like rain showers and luxury toiletries, as well as in-room sparkling and still water taps, while ground level rooms enjoy a kitchenette and private street-side courtyard alongside the hustle and bustle of Freo.
Ideal for: Chilled out cool cats, water babies
Photo by @southbeachfreo_
This may sound silly, but in many ways, Vic Park‘s kind of the Perth underdog. Oft-overlooked, it’s actually home to some of our most impressive and varied dining, with everything from American barbecue to Nepalese dumplings, to some of the best gelato and hand-made Italian cheese – Indonesian, Korean, northern Chinese, Thai, Lebanese… You name it, you can get it on Albany Highway. This isn’t even mentioning the quirky, beloved bookstores, unpretentious pubs and ultra-cool record stores.
Where to stay: While many of Vic Park’s food offerings are low-key, it’s also on the doorstep of one of our most extravagant hotels. Crown is unabashedly big – it’s about glitz, glam and plenty of it. Practically a city in and of itself, Crown is conveniently only moments away from not only Vic Park, but the CBD.
Ideal for: Culinary adventurers, glamazons
Pretty as a postcard, there’s a good reason Cottesloe has become one of our state’s biggest drawcards. Sparkling water, white sand and gentle swells make it perfect for relaxing morning floats – particularly if you’re not as confident in the waves. A row of excellent beachfront bars, restaurants and cafés make it even harder to resist, plus the stylish boutiques of Napoleon Street and cult favourite cafés North Street Store and Daisies are just around the corner.
Where to stay: Get into the easy, breezy beachfront lifestyle with a self contained stay – like at this chic, Scandi-inspired Cottesloe Cabin. The minimalist home also includes the use of two stylish Lekker bikes, so you can zoom to the beach (or the pub!) in moments.
Ideal for: Bougie beach babes
Photo by @shotbylukewilliams
While Cottesloe is a big drawcard, it’s got plenty of competition further north with Scarborough’s sandy shores. The city’s busiest beach, it’s a bit more exposed than Cott – so you can expect more of a swell and plenty of wind in the afternoon if you’re into kite or wind surfing. If you prefer calmer waters, the foreshore now features a geothermally heated open air pool, or you can keep your feet dry and hit up one of the many bars along the strip. During the warmer months, the weekly Scarborough Sunset Markets are an absolute treat, with over 100 food trucks and local retailers taking over the foreshore.
Where to stay: There are oodles of charming Airbnbs around Scarborough, from beachfront stays like this boho villa, to larger homes suited to families – like this relaxed character cottage that sleeps 6, or this luxe, Japanese-inspired villa a little further afield in Wembley Downs.
Ideal for: Party animals, sun and surf-chasers
Photo by @dylan_alcock
Header image: Alex Hotel