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Friday 3 April 2015

Is this the best hotel address in Perth?

Perth is a city on the move; full of swagger and bravado. And its hotels can be much the same; all swish, no substance.

I've sampled several Perth hotels over the past couple of years and none has impressed me quite as much as the Best Western Premier Terrace Hotel in the heart of downtown.

The service here is top-notch; a personal greeting, someone to guide you to your room and carry your bags, a person on the desk who has time to chat and offer local suggestions. Free newspapers. Old-fashioned courtesy rules here.

Situated in Perth's West End, right on bustling St George's Terrace, the hotel was once the heritage-listed St George's House, built in 1892 by the Anglican Church and reborn three years ago as a boutique hotel with a quiet charm. 

The Terrace features seven suites and eight junior suites and is popular with business people, who enjoy the Bang and Olufsen sound and television systems, an iPad, Apple TV and Foxtel IQ, as well as the reliably good fast and free wifi. 

Less impressive are the many light fittings (I never learnt how to get the bathroom ones to work properly), although the bed was extremely comfortable. 

It's probably not the best place to bring your tetchy maiden aunt, however, with (tasteful) paintings in both rooms and public spaces that caused me to ask if the place had once been a brothel.    

The Terrace restaurant is a meeting place of the city's smart minds and bodies, both in suits and jeans, and a superb spot for a late afternoon wine or beer. 

There is an excellent wine list (over 500 labels) and on-site sommelier. I'm told that ladies who lunch enjoy high tea in the afternoons (and no doubt I would as well). 

It's a good lunch option, too, with a choice of seven dishes every Monday to Saturday from 12-3pm for $25 including a glass of beer, wine, soft drink, coffee or tea. 

I'm sorry I cannot be totally positive. When a fellow guest and I descended for breakfast at the advertised time of 6.30am, the cook was nowhere to be found. With an early flight to catch I had to settle for a breakfast juice from an apologetic young waitress.

It is testimony to how impressed I was by the hotel overall that this glitch would not prevent me from staying again. One Twitter contact described it as "the best Best Western ever". 

Not for nothing has it collected a swag of awards in its three years of existence, I guess. A range of packages are available, including two weekend nights from $499 for a couple in a deluxe room.  

Best Western Premier Terrace Hotel, 237 St George's Terrace, Perth, WA 6000.        

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