Accessible apartment accommodation is scarce so when we found we had the opportunity to check out the 4.5 star Oaks on Market serviced apartments we jumped at the chance. We find the flexibility of apartment accommodation suits our needs and being able to self-cater some meals means our travel budget goes that little bit further. We have negotiated a great rate for our readers which you can access by contacting the booking team at Travel with Special Needs on 1300 404100 (make sure you mention the Source Kids Expo rate when you ring).
Oaks on Market is well located for easy city sightseeing and for visitors attending events at the Melbourne Exhibition Centre. Located just off Collins Street in Melbourne’s CBD it’s an ideal base for business and leisure travelers. The complex offers a range of accommodation including accessible, studio, one and two bedroom apartments.
An accessible studio apartment was available for inspection during our stay in Melbourne and we were impressed. Oaks on Market has four accessible studio apartments with the option of an interconnecting room if you are travelling with a larger group or family. The studio apartments can accommodate up to three people. By taking the interconnecting room attached to the studio a group of six people can stay together.
There’s no need to juggle a heavy door, luggage and wheeling into the room at Oaks on Market. A swipe card activates an auto opening door (door clearance 80cm) into the apartment. We always appreciate a spacious room with BJ’s wheelchair and our luggage. The studio apartment has good circulation space for a wheelchair user and this could be further increased by asking for the coffee table to be moved or taken out of the room if you don’t need it.
A kitchenette is a welcome inclusion in the apartment and is equipped with a lowered microwave, lever tap on the sink, dishwasher and cooktop. If you are a wheelchair user you may wish to ask for the cups and plates to be lowered as these are located in a cupboard which would be out of reach if using the kitchen in a chair. The kitchenette has everything needed for basic cooking if you feel so inclined. Although I like self-catering some meals, I also like the idea of being close to the lovely Melbourne restaurant scene.
ACCESS AROUND THE BED
Room to transfer from a chair or walking frame is easily achievable on one side of the bed and on the other there’s 80cm clear. If you are using a hoist there’s a 7cm clearance under the bed. The top of the mattress is 63cm from the floor.
The well designed accessible bathroom has excellent circulation space for a wheelchair user.
Grab rails are fitted throughout including beside the toilet and the flip-down shower bench.
All facilities around the vanity are lowered, there’s a wheelchair accessible sink with lever tap but the shower is fitted with standard taps and the shelf in the shower area is a little high for someone using the shower bench.
We know the height of the toilet can be important information for anyone travelling with a commode. From the floor to the pan it is 44cm and from the floor to the seat it is 47cm.
If you’d prefer not to cook for yourself, Oaks & Vine offers guests an innovative food and bar menu created with local produce and ingredients. Time was against us so we didn’t have time to linger over a meal. If you’ve been busy all day and prefer, Oaks & Vine will also provide in-room dining.
Staff will happily take guests with a mobility restriction or a wheelchair via a step-free route to access the pool. The usual way is via stairs.
ENTRY TO OAKS ON MARKET
A lift provides access to the foyer of the hotel.
Parking is nearby at a secure parking station. Clearance at the parking station is 1.9 metres.
As I mentioned above, we have negotiated a great rate for our readers which you can access by contacting the booking team at Travel with Special Needs on 1300 404100 (make sure you mention the Source Kids Expo rate when you ring).
Oaks on Market is ideally located for visitors attending events at the Melbourne Exhibition Centre but if you are visiting for leisure, why not pop into the very accessible Sea Life Aquarium.
You can read more about our visit to Sea Life Aquarium here.