Following a significant hotel-wide revamp in 2014, the historic Parmelia Hilton Perth hotel – formerly The Parmelia Hotel, where the property gets its name – is the default choice for Hilton HHonors members jetting to the mining capital on business or leisure.
Australian Business Traveller stopped by during a recent visit to Perth to bring you this photo-filled review.
Location & Impressions
Situated on Mill Street towards the edge of the Perth CBD, the hotel is a moment's walk from St. Georges Terrace and roughly 30 minutes from Perth Airport. Friendly staff greeted our arrival and provided a complimentary drink voucher in recognition of this author's Hilton HHonors Gold status... ... while two bottles of water (a published Gold benefit) were promptly delivered to the room, along with nibbles and a signed card from the hotel's manager welcoming me back – even though it'd been several years since my last visit under the same HHonors number. Completing a great first impression, concierge staff were asked to provide directions to the nearest two newsagencies – and did so from memory – while a doorman noticed my late return from a work function and commented that I must've had a long day.
While only a passing comment, it's these small details and personal touches that go strongly towards making you feel like a guest, rather than just a room number.
Tasteful art greets guests as they enter their recently-renovated King Suite... ... as does a spacious lounge room... ... a four-seat dining table... ... a vanity mirror and a somewhat-hidden mini-bar in the drawers below: You'll find the bedroom on the other side of that wall and separated by a closing door... ... featuring bedside tables and lamps, bedside power on one side and a chair for watching a second TV while resting a drink or snack on the cocktail table: There's also a separate control for the air conditioning in the bedroom, so if you'd prefer things a little cooler while you relax and a little warmer while you work or meet, you won't need to keep adjusting the dial.
Nestled adjacent to the lounge room but on the 'bedroom side' of the dividing door is a bathroom with dual sinks and a heated floor... ... a separate bath and shower with two sets of Hilton's signature Peter Thomas Roth amenities... ... and a lighted and adjustable shaving mirror for the gents, doubling as a make-up mirror for the ladies and joined by convenient power points for hairdryers and hair straighteners. Overall, the suite feels modern without being overly so – and certainly looks better without its pre-renovation wallpaper – while the bathroom and its features such as a large framed mirror adopt more of an 'old world' feel without going so far as to be 'dated'.
First things first: unlike the Hilton hotels in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and even Cairns, there's no Executive Lounge here.
Instead, the hotel offers a business centre with computing, printing and workspace facilities... ... along with an attached meeting room that can be closed off for privacy: Complementing that is a conference and events floor for larger gatherings... ... and working desks in the rooms with lighting and comfy, adjustable chairs. King Suites offer two of these desks – one in the bedroom and the other in the main lounge room... ... with easy access to AC power from both and also a handy USB port at the lounge room desk for charging smartphones and tablets. All up, we counted a staggering 24 vacant power points in our King Suite – or 25 when including the bathroom – so even if you completely reconfigure the furniture or are using the suite to host a very elaborate presentation, you're well and truly set for power.
Standard Wi-Fi is also free for all guests and is capped at a usable but slow 1mbps for both upload and download, while a 'Premium' connection is available for $19.95/day for users who need higher speeds.
However, that 'higher speed' is only 3mbps in each direction – slower than most normal ADSL, cable and 3G connections – but is complimentary for HHonors Gold and Diamond members.
(As the $19.95 charge is still billed to your room, do make sure the costs are reversed before you leave: particularly if utilising express check-out which bypasses the front desk.)
Guests booked in Queen Suites, King Suites and King Premier Suites enjoy free buffet breakfast at Adelphi Grill, as do HHonors Gold and Diamond members staying in any room type.
The buffet provides the usual yoghurts and pastries with a decent selection of cereals... ... but also other items like crumbed fish and vegetables for travellers hankering for an early lunch – great if you've arrived in Perth from an overnight flight and ate breakfast several hours prior on the plane. For an extra $7.50, or at no extra charge for Gold and Diamond members, other dishes are available to-order from the kitchen such as a light and fluffy pancake with maple syrup, butter, whipped cream and strawberries... ... waffles, or Eggs Benedict with hollandaise sauce on the side. With a two-night stay, waiter Jono remembered our preferred order from the day prior and offered it the next morning before we'd had the chance to ask – including our 'usual' latte, which was a nice touch.
On the downside, those barista-made coffees come at an extra charge regardless of your loyalty status – $3.80 for a regular cup or $4.80 for a large – but when the hotel far exceeds the basic 'continental breakfast' it's required to provide for Gold/Diamond guests, a few dollars for a nice coffee is nothing in the grand scheme of things.
(If you'd prefer not to pay the extra, the wait staff will happily provide filtered coffee free-of-charge.)
We also took advantage of the $20 lunch special – pairing either a burger, sandwich or fish with chips and a soft drink, beer or cider – and weren't disappointed... ... nor were we with the room service steak sandwich the following day: The complimentary HHonors drink voucher provided on check-in was put to good use at the bar where it joined an impressive cheese plate... ... which, coincidentally, was also $20, and larger than the photograph makes it appear.
Your room key unlocks a 24-hour gym with a solid selection of cardio equipment, free weights and other gear... ... along with the outdoor pool, complete with chairs and sunlounges: Certainly, there's no Executive Lounge here in Perth to relax of an evening, but on considering what I'd normally use the lounge for – daily breakfast, working space with WiFi, snacks and a drink after work – I'm not left wanting much.
When it comes to breakfast, that's covered by a free bite in the hotel's restaurant and free cooked-to-order dishes for Gold/Diamond guests, which is actually more generous than you'll typically find in Hilton-brand Executive Lounges where they do exist.
That leaves somewhere to work: a gap I filled by setting up a sizeable office on the suite's dining table rather than using the smaller working desks; and snacks, for which the welcome plate did nicely.
Then there's an evening glass of wine – covered, at least for one night, by the complimentary HHonors drink voucher – and WiFi, for which Gold members can use the Premium option at no cost: a perk normally restricted to Diamond guests.
So while an Executive Lounge is indeed absent, the service and amenities are all still there – you just need to know where to look.
Also read: Hilton Melbourne South Wharf hotel review
Chris Chamberlin was a guest of the Parmelia Hilton Perth hotel.
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