A Concierge’s Guide To Brisbane For Business Travellers
With new hotels and restaurants opening left, right and centre, not to mention the unveiling of the new Howard Smith Wharves precinct and a string of new arts and culture events on the community line-up, Brisbane has overnight become Australia’s ‘it’ city to visit.
Whether you’re headed here for business or for leisure, it’s a place you’ll most definitely want to make the most of. And who better to help you do so than a hotel concierge? We asked Tyler Couchman, concierge at Capri by Fraser, a business travellers’ favourite, to share her insider advice.
“Here in the heart of Brisbane, we have so many things to do and see right on our doorstep. If you’re staying in the city, the best way to make your way around is by walking, however, if you’re looking for something a little different, I would recommend trying a Lime Scooter. They are a fun and adventurous way to scoot around Brisbane – just make sure to wear a helmet and don’t ride on the road.”
Where to get the best coffee
“My absolute favourite coffee shop in Brisbane is Coffee Anthology. An independent and locally owned café located just around the corner on Margaret Street, they are a short walk away from the Botanic Gardens if you wish to get a takeaway coffee and go for a stroll through the luscious park.
“Alternatively, the small layout of their shop has a warm and intimate feel to it, making it a lovely place to read a book, work on any projects, catch up with friends or colleagues, or just sit and enjoy a calm moment to yourself.”
A restaurant only locals know about
“For a more casual dining experience, I would highly recommend checking out Brew Café & Wine Bar. This quirky bar is located down a laneway just off Queen St serving everything for Modern Australian brunch, tapas and share plates… and it’s open twenty-four seven. With its hole-in-the-wall type entry and contemporary atmosphere, it’s a great little hidden gem.”
The best bar and cafe for client meetings
“Across the river in South Brisbane, you’ll find a lot of great restaurants and bars. One of my favourites is The Terrace at the Emporium Hotel. This rooftop bar gives a luxurious and unique dining experience and would make for a wonderful place for a meeting if you wish to make a good impression.
“If you’re looking for a more casual setting for a client meeting, while also proving a somewhat private space for discussion, look no further than John Mills Himself. With its exposed-brick walls, this 1917 building houses a trendy bar known for coffee, sweets, and specialty cocktails.”
Where to go for a morning run
“If you love gorgeous scenery while you work out, I would recommend going for a run either through the Botanic Gardens or along the river. If you’re out for a long run, I would recommend starting at the edge of the Botanic Gardens and making your way up through Eagle Street Pier to run along the river.
“I personally love running through the gardens as I love feeling so close to nature passing through all the striking and unique types of florae. Alternatively, if you can bring yourself to wake up early enough, running along the river during sunrise gives a picturesque scenery as the rising sun hits the water.
“Or, if it’s raining and cold outside, our guests move their workout to our massive gym space. Either hit the treadmill or head across to our indoor pool for a few laps. Then finish up your session in the steam room or sauna.”
Where to get your arts and culture fix
“An amazing and noteworthy hidden gem in the city is a little bookshop called Archives Fine Books. Located on Charlotte St, the gorgeous heritage-listed building is home to the largest second-hand bookstore in Queensland. For those sci-fi lovers, it’s much like Doctor Who’s Tardis, but bigger on the inside. The quaint bookstore is home to a vast selection of books from all different genres and is a fantastic spot for any bibliophiles.
“One of my favourite places in Brisbane is the Queensland Gallery of Modern Art (GOMA). Although it is not a ‘hidden’ gem, a lot of people do overlook it. It often has free exhibitions in addition to paid. If you’re an art lover, I would highly recommend clearing some space in your schedule for it.”
Where to shop
“Just three blocks from the GOMA, you’ll find Queen Street Mall. This strip is Brisbane’s shopping district and along it, you’ll find many different independent and chain store retailers with everything from high-end retailers to restaurants to souvenir stores.
“Beware though, there are so many good things that one could very easily spend too much time and money perusing through the mall.”
Where to escape the rain
“If you find yourself in Brisbane and your plans have been thwarted by the rain, catch the ferry over to New Farm to check out the Brisbane Powerhouse. The Powerhouse is a repurposed tram power station that now features plays, concerts and other shows. They always have something to keep you entertained.”
The one thing visitors always get wrong about Brisbane
“A common misconception for visitors is that Brisbane is a small city town. Although we may not be as big as Melbourne or Sydney, Brisbane is certainly not small and is most definitely a thriving city. Walking through its streets, you’ll be surprised at how much culture you’ll see. From our beautiful, Heritage-listed buildings to funky, riverside cafes, you won’t be disappointed.”
(Lead image: Brisbane Marketing)
Published 10 June, 2019