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MACq 01 Hotel Review: A Stand Out in Transformed Tasmania

The name reads more like a complicated wifi password than a luxury hotel in Hobart (named after the original shipping shed on the site, known as Macquarie 1). Still, if you’ve had a friend or family member venture down to Tasmania recently they’ve probably mentioned MACq 01. It’s quickly become a destination hotel with epic views of the River Derwent, Mount Wellington, and Constitution Dock offering some of the best seafood in the world brought by Antarctic seas.

A story-telling hotel by name and nature, each of its 114 luxury rooms is named after a great Tasmanian, past and present. Look inside and you’ll find one of our favourite restaurants in the city, the Old Wharf Restaurant led by Head Chef Alvin Sim, a whisky-tasting room where you can try some of the land’s greatest drams, and daily story-telling tours that build character on the stunning visuals of the hotel.

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We stayed in a Superior Waterfront Room (45m2) for this trip, but we’ve spent time in a Premium Waterfront Suite (51m2) in the past. If you’re visiting for a special occasion, the added private terrace and top-floor views you gain with a Premium Waterfront Suite are worth stretching your budget. Although, large bathrooms, in-room dining, streaming-capable televisions, and comfy king-size can be found in most rooms.

Rooms are fairly priced, starting at $360 per night in a standard Hunter Street Room without a view. However, we highly recommend a waterfront room with prices for these starting at $540 per night for a Superior Room (including breakfast) and upwards of $880 for a suite.

Spend a few hours sitting on the balcony watching the world go by when you arrive, head downstairs and sip on a cocktail at The Story Bar, enjoy some of the region’s best local produce with dinner at the Old Wharf Restaurant, explore a few whiskies from Tasmania’s top distilleries at the Evolve Spirits Bar to end the night, and then order yourself breakfast in bed before a visit to some of the region’s great wineries the next day. It’s easy to see why Hobart has garnered the ‘mini Queenstown’ moniker.

Macq 01 hidden hobart history tour
Hidden Hobart History Tour | Image: MACq 01

If there’s one thing we recommend doing during your stay, it’s Hidden Hobart: The Viewfinder Tour. One of three tours that commence from hotel reception daily (114 Doors Tour, Sticky Stones and Secrets Tour, Hidden Hobart: The Viewfinder Tour) it’s a 1.5-hour walking tour that packages a thorough history lesson of the area with the back stories of a few select Tasmanian icons, including the Henry Jones & Co. building across the road which was formerly the IXL Jams production facility before it was eventually converted into the sister hotel we see today. If you’re lucky enough to get Frederick as your tour guide, tell him we said hi!

Tasmanian tourism is seeing huge growth with a March 2023 Tasmanian Visitor Survey confirming a 59 per cent jump in spend compared to March 2019, before the pandemic ($3.96 billion). If you’re visiting Hobart you’ll want to stay within arms reach of the piers for great seafood and Salamanca Market to avoid the Saturday morning crowds. And with a view that bests all in Hobart, we think MACq 01 is your best option. Bookings can be made directly via the link below.

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