MACq 01 Hotel
Treat yourself to a stay at one of Hobart's most luxurious hotels to experience epic waterfront views and cultural insights galore.
August 25, 2022
Picture this: you're standing on the private terrace of your luxurious waterfront suite, admiring the sweeping views of the River Derwent, Kunanyi (Mount Wellington), Salamanca Market and Hobart's CBD. It's possibly the best introduction one can have to Hobart.
It's also hard to believe that a few centuries ago, your view would've been very different. MACq 01 is situated on what was once the city's Old Wharf, which had a bit of a seedy reputation in the 19th century. The area was the centre of Tasmania's European settlement — the convict-built sandstone buildings housed everything from blacksmiths to brothels while the waterfront was filled with whaling ships. At one time, the Derwent was filled with so many whales that one convict exclaimed in his diary that you could "walk from one side of the river to the other on their backs".
This fun (though likely exaggerated) anecdote is just one that you will learn during a MACq01 guest experience. MACq 01 bills itself as a 'storytelling hotel', committed to sharing the tales of the people that have shaped Tasmania. There are a few tours to choose from, all complimentary to hotel guests (or $20 for visitors). On the Hidden Hobart tour, you'll be led around the waterfront precinct with a retro viewfinder (you know, these ones) so you can directly compare what Hobart once looked like with how it is now. Meanwhile, a guide will show you around the hotel pointing out the artefacts and stories on display on the 114 Doors tour.
MACq 01's storytelling concept is a consistent thread through all aspects of a guest's stay — even down to a soundtrack of characters sharing stories as you ride the elevator (yep, don't worry, these voices aren't in your head!). Each of the 114 rooms is named after a notable figure from Tasmania's past, like Henry Jones (Tasmanian business tycoon), Amy Sherwin (the Tasmanian Nightingale) and Ma Dwyer (a famous Salamanca Place madam). Other room features include a lush deep bath for soaking those weary traveller's bones, a walk-in robe and coffee machine.
If you pay a visit to the hotel's Evolve Spirits Bar, you'll experience history of a different kind. The award-winning lounge bar stocks incredibly rare spirits from Tasmania and beyond, which you can enjoy via a tasting flight or in a cocktail with bar snacks. But they're not the only curiosities to see here. Evolve is also filled with an unbelievable collection of fossils, some that date back hundreds of millions of years, including a triceratops nose horn and megalodon teeth.
Elsewhere in the hotel is the Old Wharf Restaurant, overlooking the harbour. The restaurant serves refined takes on hearty classics — think baked pear and goat's cheese tart, slow-cooked beef cheek or Tasmanian scallop pie. Hot tip: don't skip dessert. The Maltesers Layer Cake is just the level of decadence you deserve on your Tassie escape.
Images courtesy of Tourism Tasmania, Federal Group and Adam Gibson.