In the last couple of years I’ve happily become a regular visitor to Brisbane. I’m quite content to swap the winter chill of Sydney for a few days thawing out in the South Bank area. When I was asked to present at the Source Kids Disability Expo I was keen to stay near the venue. While researching suitable accommodation I discovered a new hotel had recently opened a street away. Given the excellent accommodation I recently reviewed at the new Novotel South Wharf in Melbourne, I was hopeful the Novotel Brisbane South Bank would deliver similar accessible facilities.
The Novotel Brisbane South Bank oozes the freshness of a new hotel. Located within easy reach of both the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre and the South Bank Parklands the hotel is positioned well for both business and leisure travellers. AJ was travelling with me and when I saw her taking photos around the hotel I was ensured it would also get the nod of the sometimes tricky teen market.
How refreshing to find an accessible room with all the necessary facilities plus the option of an interconnecting room and a park view. The Novotel Brisbane South Bank has a total of 11 accessible hotel rooms.
Walking into the room I was impressed by the space and the light which streamed into the room. With the press of a button, the automatic curtains parted and revealed a lovely view across the nearby park.
The large windows frame the view allowing guests to enjoy it from the comfort of their bed. I can vouch for the comfort of the bed. Absolute bliss!
The bed does have some clearance for a hoist (approximately 13cm) in one section of the bed frame (see previous photo of bed).
The large accessible bathroom has plenty of circulation space for a wheelchair user, a bench shower seat, height adjustable shower and lever taps.
Grab rails surround the shower and toilet which is also equipped with a back-rest. The toilet pan is approximately 44cm high and 47cm from the floor to the seat.
A wheelchair accessible sink with lever taps is also featured in the bathroom and all light switches and towel rails are at a lowered height.
I always think a video shows the space better than still shots so take a little tour of the accessible accommodation by clicking below –
OPTIONAL INTERCONNECTING ROOM
All accessible rooms have the option of an interconnecting room which is always wonderful for families or those travelling with a support worker. The room is very similar but with additional furniture so there isn’t as much circulation space.
As it was just AJ and I travelling we stayed in a non-accessible room, preferring to ensure the accessible accommodation was left for anyone needing it. We find it’s always interesting to be able to share both styles of accommodation as we know our readers have varying needs.
AJ was suitably impressed by the décor and comfort of the beds, quickly choosing a bed and settling in for a nanna nap after an early start. A great range of Foxtel channels also met with her approval on the drizzly afternoon.
Designer styling is making hotel bathroom far more appealing and interesting. The current trend of cubicles for the shower and toilet does make it important for guests requiring easy access to ensure they book an accessible room.
Having the bathroom connected to the main room gives the space a more open feel. Don’t worry, a sliding partition allows privacy when needed.
To say I was excited to see a pool hoist would be an understatement. With Brisbane’s beautiful weather I imagine this will be a much-used facility for guests staying with access needs. Let’s hope more Australian hotels start to install the pool seats in the future. Bravo Novotel Brisbane South Bank!
Spice Central Bar & Restaurant’s floor to ceiling windows also overlook the park making it a wonderfully light and bright place to dine. On an unusually wet evening we decided to dine in. The menu is sophisticated and I can highly recommend the lamb. Being a less adventurous diner AJ missed a kid’s menu but was full from a late lunch so was happy to nibble on a starter.
The promise of a buffet breakfast had AJ raring to go early and ticked all the boxes with eggs cooked to order and a good variety of fresh fruit, cereals, pastry items and more. The food stations are spread out throughout the restaurant, meaning no congestion in any one area. This makes a buffet breakfast so much easier for a wheelchair user. Some food items are located on higher shelves but staff are friendly and accommodating so I’m sure they’d happily assist if needed. Gluten free options are also available.
Onsite parking is available to guests. The driveway is undercover and has a clearance of 3.5metres and the car park clearance is 2.3metres.
For business visitors looking for a base while attending events at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, this hotel is ideal as it’s only one street away. If being close to the entertainment district of South Bank is a priority, then this hotel is also a fantastic base sitting only two blocks away from the area. Manual wheelchair users should be aware there is a small hill to tackle for one of those blocks. Power wheelchair users will find it an easy wheel both ways.
We have a list of wheelchair accessible activities in the South Bank Parklands area here.
Our stay at Novotel Brisbane South Bank was complimentary but as always our enthusiasm is a result of fantastic accessible features being offered.