How the QT manages to hold on to its ’boutique’ status while still competing with the larger chains

It’s a delicate dance that not many have been able to master.

By Natasha Lee 06/06/2018

For a hotel chain which aligns itself with being a ’boutique’ – the QT brand enjoys a kind of profile usually only afforded to those slightly more well-known establishments

But it’s easy to see why.

The QT brand has managed to bring a much-needed whimsy and elegance to each and every city it calls home – including Canberra, Sydney, Perth and Melbourne.

The hotel bills itself as not being “like your ordinary hotel”, boasting an eclectic inclusion of “art, style and luxury” within its walls.

On a recent visit to the chain’s Melbourne establishment, this writer was delighted to find that all of the endearing quirks that made her Sydney hometown’s incarnation so enjoyable had not been lost in translation between the two cities.

The aptly named ‘Directors of Chaos’ greet guests at the Melbourne QT. Photo: QT

Maître D and door staff were still clad in their 1950s-eqsue uniforms, with striking black bobs (all wigs, of course). The hotel’s in-your-face irreverence noticeable from the moment you set foot in the building, thanks to a giant neon bird blinking at guests from the top of a stairwell.

It is at top of this stairwell, much like the peak of Mount Kilimanjaro, where guests will find salvation in the form of Pascale’s Bar and Grill.

The hotel has managed to master a rather difficult dance of catering not only for the after-work crowd, but also for those seeking a more substantial meal.

It is here, at Pascale Bar and Grill, where Robb Report chose to dine for the night.

The bustling 120 seat open-plan dining room offers an expansive menu inspired by the lively New Orleans ‘French Quarter’.

Pascale’s Bar and Grill. Photo: QT

The open kitchen adds to the theatrics, offering glimpses into the dish creation.
While there, Robb Report dined on grilled calamari with quinoa and finger lime, baby snapper with bouillabaisse and black garlic and the roasted aged duck for two. It is, however, the side dishes where the restaurant really shines.

Accompanying our dishes were the chargrilled corn with mountains of parmesan and lightly sprinkled with paprika, and the roasted butternut pumpkin with yuzu and feta.

Sufficiently full, it’s easy to see the allure of clocking-off for the night by being able to amble up the lift and crashing onto one of the hotel beds.

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