It can be hard to decide where to stay in a city when you’re visiting for the first time. I’ve prepared this list of places where to stay in Brisbane based on my experience of visiting and living there. I’ve listed the six best areas to stay in Brisbane and my favourite accommodations in the capital of the Sunshine State.

You may be surprised by the number of accommodations available in Brisbane. It’s not a big city, but at the same time, it still covers a large area. It’s overwhelming for a first-time visitor and anyone who haven’t visited Brisbane in the last few years. Many new buildings appear every year.

There’s a map at the end of the article that shows the recommended accommodations in this article as well as attractions and transport.

View from Bowen Terrace Brisbane
Brisbane skyline at night from Bowen Terrace

How did I select these accommodations in Brisbane

I’ve selected six areas that are central or not far from the heart of Brisbane.

The CBD, Fortitude Valley, South Bank, Kangaroo Point, Spring Hill, and New Farm are in my opinion the best areas to stay in Brisbane. But they are all very different. I’ve described each of them so you can decide which one better meets your envies and where you should stay. If you’re unfamiliar with Brisbane, the map at the end of the article will make it easier for you to visually see where these areas are, as well as the transport and attractions.

For each area, I’ve recommended a few places. Although I have only visited a few of the accommodations on this list, I know very well the area where they are located and I also used recommendations from relatives who visited Brisbane.

Rooftop views from FV by Peppers*

For the accommodations, I find the location is an essential criterion. But I also considered the special features that I found made the place different from the other accommodations in Brisbane.

Some have exceptional views, others may have interesting interiors, or sometimes the price value is appealing.

Carpark can also be an important feature for those travelling by car. There are paid carpark available in the heart of Brisbane. But, most of the time, it comes at an extra cost (sometimes $35-$50 a day). Parking gets more affordable as you go further away from the city (West End, Kangaroo Point and New Farm on this list).

My recommendations on where to stay in Brisbane:

1. Where to stay in Brisbane City

Staying in the city will allow you to be in a central location. You’ll only be about a 15-minute walk from most places in South Bank and Fortitude Valley. You’ll have direct access to the Botanical Gardens, the river walk, and the nice restaurants.

Skytower Apartments*

If you choose to stay in an apartment in Brisbane City, I recommend Skytower. I love the location. You’ll have the Botanic Gardens and the river just a few metres away. It means lovely walks and excellent food at your doorstep. You’ll get fantastic views if you book a room on the higher floors. More info here*.

View of the Botanical Garden from a Skytower apartment
View of the Story Bridge from a Skytower apartment
Skytower is on the right

Meriton Apartments*

There are two Meriton towers in Brisbane with serviced suites/apartments. Technically, they’re both in the CBD. But one is very close to Fortitude Valley and the other one is on the other side of the city, at Roma Street.

I prefer the one near Fortitude Valley. If you’re on the right side of the tower, it offers iconic views of the river and Story Bridge. It’s only a few metres away from the riverwalk and the Kingsmith Wharves precinct. And it takes less than 10 minutes to walk to the heart of the city. More info here*.

I’m not a fan of the Meriton near Roma Street*. The views are splendid, but I find the location not as good as all the other places I listed here.

View from my aparthotel in Meriton Adelaide St

Queen St Residence Apartments*

If you’re after a rooftop pool with a view in the CBD, Queen St Residence can seduce you. Most apartments also have nice views. More info here*.

W Brisbane hotel*

If it’s within your budget, you cannot go wrong choosing W Brisbane. It’s ideally located in the CBD and close to South Bank. If you’re just looking for a place where to sleep, skip this one. But if you’re up for an experience, W Brisbane is an excellent choice. Visiting the hotel, admiring the interior design and enjoying the five-star service can keep you busy most of the day. More info here*.

Four Points by Sheraton hotel*

It’s hard to be more in the heart of the city than that. But only a few rooms have an interesting view, so I’d recommend it only if you can afford the upgrade. More info here*.

Ibis Styles hotel*

The price point for the Ibis Styles is lower than the other CBD places on this list. The Ibis Styles is a good value as you’ll still be within walking distance from all the CBD attractions and South Bank. But it takes a bit longer to reach Riverside. More info here*.

Sofitel hotel*

When you choose Sofitel, you’re sure to have a comfortable stay. I’d recommend it in Brisbane if you’re going to catch the train and don’t want to walk. It’s right at Central Station. It cannot be easier to catch a train to the airport or the Gold Coast. More info here*

Royal On The Park hotel*

If you want green views while staying in the city, a room with park views at Royal On The Park is your solution. It’s right next to the Botanical Gardens. More info here*.

Treasury Brisbane hotel*

If you like the idea of staying in a historical and iconic building, Treasury Brisbane offers elegant rooms with antique-style furniture in one of Australia’s grandest heritage buildings, which is also the casino. More info here*.

2. Where to stay in Fortitude Valley

I lived in Fortitude Valley for seven years and I believe it’s the best place to stay in Brisbane for those looking for nightlife. It’s a great place to go out for food or drinks with plenty of choices at Brunswick Street, King Street, Chinatown, Emporium or Howard Smith Wharves.

From Fortitude Valley, it’s easy to walk to the CBD, and there are also trains, buses, and boats that serve the entire Brisbane area, including direct lines to South Bank.

Crystalbrook Vincent*

The Crystalbrook Vincent (formerly the Fantauzzo) is located at Howard Smith Wharves, which is a fantastic area to hang out in the evening. It cannot be closer to the Brisbane River, the Story Bridge and the Riverwalk. Other lively areas in Fortitude Valley aren’t far and it’s a short walk along the river to reach the CBD. More info here*.

Brisbane Story Bridge with Fantauzzo Hotel on the left of the bridge.
The Crystalbrook Vincent (formerly the Fantauzzo) at the bottom of the Story Bridge (on the left)


Oakwood is located just above Fantauzzo. The views of the river, Story Bridge and CBD are fantastic. More info here*

FV by Peppers*

The train from the airport will take you almost straight to FV Peppers. It’s ideal if you’re planning to go to the Gold Coast by train too. It takes just over five minutes to walk from FV Peppers to the river and Howard Smith Wharves. The towers offer great views of Fortitude Valley and the CBD. And you don’t even need to go out for entertainment. The leisure facilities offered are hard to beat: swimming pools with a bar and a view, private spa or cinema rooms for a small additional fee… And you’ll have access to one of the most beautiful rooftops in the city. More info here*.

View of FV by Peppers from Wickham St in Fortitude Valley

3. Where to stay in South Bank

The South Bank lagoons are one of the most famous attractions in Brisbane. The city views are also some of the best ones you’ll find in Brisbane. South Bank also hosts the best art venues and museums. You’ll have a good choice of restaurants for dinner, but it will get quiet early.

Brisbane South Bank Lagoons
South Bank lagoons

Emporium Hotel*

If you wish to stay in South Bank, I recommend the Emporium. And if you don’t have the budget to stay there, go at least for a drink at their rooftop restaurant. The food was not special, but the views of the city are unbeatable. The lagoons will be at your feet as well as the train (direct from the airport) and the ferries (to the city and Fortitude Valley). The bridge to reach the Botanical Gardens is also very close. If you can afford the upgrade, get one of the suites that offer a bath with a view. More info here*.

View from the Emporium South Brisbane restaurant

Arise Ivy & Eve Apartments*

If you want to be closer to Brisbane’s cultural precinct, or if you prefer to stay in an apartment, Arise Ivy & Eve apartments are perfectly located. More info here*.

4. Where to stay in Kangaroo Point

Kangaroo Point is more isolated than the other places in terms of transport and activities. But it’s more affordable, especially if you need to park a car. The ferry will easily take you to South Bank and the City, while you only need to cross the Story Bridge to get to Fortitude Valley entertainment.

Kangaroo Point is famous for its natural cliffs offering outdoor rock climbing in the heart of a city. It’s also one of my favourite spots to watch the sunset in Brisbane.

Bonus: Kangaroo Point is where my favourite French bakery in Brisbane is located (Christan Jacques), so you’ve got breakfast sorted!

Brisbane Kangaroo Point Cliff Sunset
Brisbane skyline from Kangaroo Point Cliffs

Il Mondo Boutique Hotel*

If you like smaller hotels or if you don’t want to pay extra for the carpark, this one is a good option. It’s not high-end, but you’ll have a comfortable stay. It’s a lovely ferry ride to reach the CBD, Fortitude Valley or South Bank. More information here*.

The Docks On Goodwin*

If you prefer an apartment, the Docks On Goodwin is in the same area as Il Mondo Boutique Hotel. They also offer free parking. More information here*.

The Point*

It may be the most expensive hotel in Kangaroo Point. It offers rare panoramic views of the Story Bridge, the river and the city from its rooftop. It’s good if you want to escape from the busyness of the heart of Brisbane while not being too far and keeping high-end features. More info here*.

5. Where to stay in Spring Hill

Spring Hill can be a good option to keep prices low while still being in a central location. There isn’t much touristy activity in Spring Hill, but it’s not far from the CBD and Fortitude Valley.

Holiday Inn Express*

If you can get their most standard rate, I find the Holiday Inn is a good value to stay in a comfortable hotel close to the heart of Brisbane. More info here*.

Spring Hill Mews apartments*

If you have a car, this may be the best option for you as it offers free parking with a one-bedroom apartment. It will take 5 to 10 minutes to walk to the city. It’s very close to the beautiful Roma Parklands. More info here*.

Ridge Apartment Hotel*

Ridge is a bit closer to Fortitude Valley than Spain Hill Mews. The carpark fee ($15/day) comes on top of the apartment price, so it could be of better value if you don’t have a car. More info here*.

6. Where to stay in Newfarm

New Farm is an excellent choice to experience a local feel in Brisbane. You’ll find a lot more locals than tourists there. Although it’s a residential area, there are great restaurants and cafes in New Farm. And despite the nightlife of Fortitude Valley not being far, New Farm is peaceful.

Transport is limited to buses going up Brunswick St to Fortitude Valley and the City, and a ferry at the end of the park. But if you like riding a bike or don’t mind walking, you’ll be just fine and blend in with the locals. The Riverwalk is very nice.

Best Brisbane Sunsets - New Farm Park
Sunset at New Farm Park

Edward Lodge*

Edward Lodge is a small boutique hotel near the beautiful New Farm Park and riverwalk, as well as the ferry to reach the city. I like that they provide guests with bicycles and helmets. More info here*.

Spicers Balfour*

Spicers is reputed for providing luxurious experiences. Guests can enjoy the rooftop with beautiful views of the Story Bridge and the city. It’s not the best rooftop view in Brisbane, but it’s a rare feature in New Farm. Spicers is good if you want to escape from the busy Fortitude Valley or not be in a city setting. But you’ll still be within walking distance. Bonus: my favourite bakery (Chouquette) is only a couple of blocks away. More info here*.

Map of these recommended accommodations in Brisbane

The map below will help you see where the main attractions and transports are and the suggested places where to stay in Brisbane, the capital of Queensland (Australia).

Where did you stay in Brisbane? What’s the best area to stay in Brisbane? Share your experience in the comments below!

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