CCU Undercover: Sofitel, Brisbane

CCU would like to believe that she was more than justified in splurging her savings on having a very pampered and luxurious stay at this hotel while up in Brisbane for the Australian Eat Drink Blog Conference. Of course, that is when she actually had the time to enjoy, as there was so much going on!

She could still remember the plush bathrobe, the silken sheets…

And here she was, back at home, typing away with an old ratty jumper and some tatty slippers on her feet..Why must the luxury life end????

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Ugh. Classic human behaviour. Ignoring the fact that there actually was luxury enjoyed, but just wanting more.

So typical.😛

So I am going to stop being typical and tell you my little meeting with luxury instead! Have you ever felt that sometimes, you deserve to get out of the routine that we have established? Eat, go to uni, work, come home, stay up and pretend you are enjoying yourself because otherwise, you would not have done something fun all day?

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Yeah. I know them feels.

For me, this weekend was away was fun enough. Meeting bloggers, tasting new and different wonderful foods and learning all about the blogging world today – but more on that later😛 *River Song: *Spoilers*

When I got to Brisbane, I already felt a little bit boss – I mean, I was travelling alone for the very first time! I don’t know, seems like a pretty big deal!

Even the TV was super nice!

Even the TV was super welcoming!

So after some cutesy questioning of how the hell to get to Sofitel, I caught the neat Airtrain to Central station and BAM!

Sofitel located right about. Convenient much?

I wish I could say I sauntered into the extravagantly golden lobby (all of whose photos I unfortunately lost!) but I was so nervous. I felt out of place, with people in Armani around me!

Don't I look happy? I was SO happy :D

Don’t I look happy? I was SO happy😀 But SO severely underdressed!

I must say though, I noticed the only people who didn’t have smug expressions on their faces, or who weren’t downright frowning/constipation faced were the staff and people with alcohol in their hands. What is it about staying in a fancy hotel that ups your ego?

Calm down and actually smile. God. Won’t kill you to crack a joke with the staff. Ugh.

Sorry, it just really peeved me off. Peeved being a nice version of the word I am really thinking. I mean, you are staying in the lap of luxury yet you control your emotions? ‘Professionalism’ – it stinks!

See - SMILE, selfies, shameless and enjoy it :D

See – SMILE, selfies, shameless and enjoy it😀

But moving on :P…

In their pert french accents, and some ‘Bonjours’ later (courtesy of a very buff blonde at the reception – ooft, don’t hide those muscles under the suit!) I was given my room key and I actually was bubbling with anticipation!

Elevator Music –> Level 15 –> Room 1504 –> FINALLY!

Look at this room. A lovely colour scheme that is both contemporary and welcoming with all those dove greys.

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Plush carpeting under my feet, and a king-size bed. You could fit three of me on that bed. Thank god it was just me😛 – Clean, fresh sheets that crinkled when I literally collapsed onto the mattress, with very fluffy pillows as well!

If you follow my instagram, you would have seen how giddy I was!!

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I also really liked how there wasn’t too much clutter in this room. I got the Superior Room and it had all the essentials (as I will go on to show you, but most importantly it was not cluttered. There was space to dance if you wanted to (I tested that out for you!):)

The decor I would say aimed towards minimalist (because I really don’t many more genres than that and antique if I be honest :P) – a few photos complimenting the furniture and walls, as well as adding a bit of refinement.

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There was also a lovely wide table (again, emphasising that there was lots of space for 1 person, and it would have been fine for 2 people!), powerpoint located nearby to act as a ‘study’ area. Many a notes taken from the EDB conference were written here.

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As you shall see, (or actually have seen), many a meals were eaten here as well!

I did honestly have a little bit of trouble with the TV though – before it was all gracious and welcoming me personally, I could not for the life of me turn it on! Yes, I know which button to use, I am a this-century child, but sometimes I had to get really close and other times, it would only work if I pressed it from the end of the bed. A kind of inconsistent signal, whether this be because remote batteries were running out, I can’t say😛

But when the TV did open, it was easy to navigate around the movies and television channels, which actually is often the most confusing part of all hotel TVs.

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Now for my favourite part of the room. This lounging area.

If I was old and grey, I would love to build a library around this very lounge and light, and then sit down with my pipe and read away for the rest of eternity.
Jokes, I would do that being as young as I am too. It was such a cosy little corner to relax in!

Now, shall we move on to the bathroom? I found it a little weird that it had a yellowish, creamy marble interior, considering the actual room was so opposite to that, I would have preferred if it had white, black and stainless steel look. But that didn’t stop it from being a good bathroom.

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Tucked away to the side, was the location of the unmentionables, while a large basin took up the middle with a convenient towel racks were located underneath and to the side.

There were standard sized amenities, though I liked the wooden box touch for holding some extra nail filers and cotton buds.

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I could not however, for the life of me find the hairdryer here. Now I am sure I just didn’t check the large cupboard which contained the extra bathrobe and the safe, but I thought to myself ‘Why wouldn’t you hang the hairdryer inside?’

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To the left of the bathroom, was the large shower, which actually didn’t have a closing, so a lot more water got out than necessary – I think a sliding glass door could have saved a lot of water!

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I did appreciate how they thought ahead of your needs, just with small gestures though – hanging one bathrobe inside the bathroom before the guess arrives, and putting the shower gel already in the shower, as opposed to with the other amenities. Overall, it was, again, a very expansive bathroom, space to move around when drying yourself and all!

Nooow… moving on the minibar (my favourite part… jokes… room service is my favourite part!) A whole food section was located underneath a countertop decorated by a giant… I don’t even know what it was😛 But there was a drawer full of different mini liquors (classic!) – with a handy little bottle opener!

I promise, I touched… nothing…😉

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Besides the cutest bottles ever, the other drawer contained some overpriced (as usual) nibbles such as Pringles and fancy nuts, including Australia’s famous macadamias. I did let late night temptation get to me and had some sour cream and onion Pringles – no regrets.

Also, by keeping the fancy-schmancy with the nibbles, the seduction level of whipping out a classy alcoholic beverage with two champagne flutes kinda went down. To be honest.

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Underneath the drawers, there were two small cupboards. One contained the classic coffee and tea making facilities, loaded generously with sugars and different types as well as some extra glasses. On the other side, we found the actual mini-fridge – loaded with creamers for the coffee, and various drinks (both alcoholic and non-alcoholic) ranging from soft drinks and juices to sparkling water.

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A very decent range indeed. I enjoyed that late night chilled coke in a glass bottle – I am only human!😀

And there was chocolate. Once more, I was weak. But it was Lindt, can you actually blame me??

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Finally now, we move onto room service! YAY are you excited?😀

Their large handbook was very easy to navigate through, where to call and what times people are open. Basically, for me, guest relations was the number to live by. Each time I called, I got both personalised and very polite service, which was a big plus, especially if you are ordering at 10pm. Their room service options were fantastic, a large range of dishes and desserts and an all-day breakfast (SCORE!)

And it was 24 hours, with the late night dining options actually being quite extensive, despite the fact that they started from 11pm.

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Now, when I had just gotten off the plane, I was kind of tired and grizzly, I needed some food! So whipping through the menu, I decided upon the Vegetarian Pita Sandwich (Pocket bread filled with tabouli, hummus, lettuce, avocado and alfalfa) – Served with Booster Juice ($27). I had the avocado removed but I needed a bit of greenery to feel healthy😛

But I also needed something nice and fattening to get me going so I ordered as a side (mind you, this could have been a meal in its own right) the Beer Battered Fries w/ a side of sour cream, sweet chilli sauce and tomato chutney ($12).

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First off – the pita:) – I actually had a bit of confusion with this one, because when I ordered it, I was told it wasn’t on the menu. I thought ‘ok, weird’ but was impressed by how they were willing to try and make an exact replica of it according to my description of it from the menu.😛

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But the mix-up was fixed and it was resolved when the lady found it and kept apologising profusely. No biggie, it could happen to anyone!:)

The sandwich was very refreshing, you could taste how fresh the ingredients were. It was, as you can obviously tell, very generously filled and the bread had been a little warmed beforehand, which was quite nice. I also had the sweetest lady deliver it, she was all ‘Bonjour’ and I was all ‘OMG FOOD!’😀

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As for the booster juice, you could order a mixed juice of veggies and fruit, all freshly squeezed, but I kept it real with just a simple, fresh organic apple juice. I loved how they covered it with some cling-wrap to stop it becoming foamy on top, that was quite a classy touch.

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Now for the chips – can I just say, I am hard pressed to remember when I have had chips that were so crunchy, but light and airy on the inside? And the colour – a far cry from soggy and golden fries you get from Maccas, I thought they were kumara (sweet potato) fries for a second!

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A deep, delicious fried colour that had me coming back for more!

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And the combination of sour cream, chutney and sweet chilli worked like a charm. I had ordered some tomato sauce on the side, but boy, that was SO forgotten. I especially liked the chutney, which had actually a chilli touch and chunky bits!

Needless to say.. I couldn’t move after this meal. So I just enjoyed their range of movies since I bought the deal – $34 for all the movies you can watch in 24 hours. Pretty great considering otherwise, it is $17 a movie…

Now… come night time, I felt I had severely lacked in the fruit department. I hadn’t eaten any all day and for a fruitarian, that is unheard of! Blasphemy even! So I decided to go with the less expensive (but still mightily so :P) Fresh Fruit Salad ($15). A system, I really liked was that they always asked ‘are you ordering for 1 or 2 people’, just in case!

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I also didn’t realise that this fruit salad comes with an ice cream? What? It totally was written down! But when the lady asked me ‘Would you like one or two scoops with that?’ I could hardly say, ‘no scoops’ – how rude!😛

So I opted for one scoop of strawberry ice cream. Good decision.

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While the fruit salad was quite average in its overdose of melons (but at least the grapes were seedless!), this ice cream made me sing a little. Its flavour was a mix of artificial strawberry milkshake from Maccas, and real strawberry aftertaste. Most confusing but very much enjoyed, despite the few chunks of ice crystals I found in it.

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I did however, find it a touch too much on the sweet side, I had to eat it with the fruits for the watery-ness to tone it down:)

As a final hoorah, before having to leave early Sunday morning, I decided on Saturday night to splurge on some pizza. I went with the Vegetarian Pizza ($32) but added my own twists to it. Again, another example of how flexible they were in regards to the menu – Instead of pesto, and getting rid of the mushrooms, I got it with napoli pizza sauce with grilled zucchini, red onion, fire-roasted capsicums, butternut pumpkin and bocconcini-cheese, garnished with cherry tomatoes.

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This pizza was not too heavy, with a firm crust and the toppings were delicious. Albeit, a little oily, but still very delicious. The pumpkin added random bursts of sweetness almost and I was a big fan of the capsicum. I was also expecting the bocconcini to just be in chunks on top of the pizza, so was relieved when I saw it was melted down in its sunny-coloured glory!

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An excellent choose that I did not finish in the night. So it made for an excellent cold breakfast the next day😀

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And thus ended my Sofitel adventure… for now😉

General Notes

  • Impeccable service – these people do not know what rudeness is, they are calm and cool (and majority are very good looking with very authentic French accents)
  • The French flair is evident in all the staff and the interior, and I like the theme!
  • A wide range on the room service menu with a short 30 minute delivery time
  • Easy to use air conditioning and lots of space
  • Quite expensive – lives up to reputation but I do not regret splurging my savings a little on my first trip
  • Located conveniently above Central Station – I couldn’t find an elevator though I am sure there must have been one somewhere – lucky I only had the one medium suitcase!:)
  • Large variety of restaurants available if you are not a hermit as well as all necessary facilities e.g. Dry cleaning etc.
T'was not a bad life :)

T’was not a bad life:)

Rating:  9/10

Address:

249 Turbot St,
Brisbane
QLD 4000

Website:


Sofitel, Brisbane, allow me to get a little Terminator on you and say “I’ll be back.”

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64 Comments

  1. Pingback: Eat Drink Blog 2014: A Recap | Go Bake Yourself

  2. Lisa at fLVE says:

    I luv hotel stays and being spoiled. This is such a lovely hotel post. I enjoy reading it and looking at all the photos. Excellent job! And yes, I do agree…people need to smile more when they are enjoying themselves.:)

  3. What a fantastic adventure! It sounds so fun – I went to my first meeting with bloggers this year and it was such fun to meet everyone I’d been emailing with!! The pita sandwich, BTW, looks fantastic!! I’m going to try to make something like it !!

  4. Becky says:

    Uru,
    Aren’t you the Foodie Diva now staying in the lap of luxury? Sounds like you had an amazing weekend that you will never forget. Good for! You definitely needed a break.
    My son and DIL got married at Soffitel-Chicago, so we stayed the wedding weekend at the hotel, I know how chic they are. Their wedding and reception were magnificent, and perfect in every detail.

  5. Barbara says:

    Looks like you had a lovely trip! Smiled at all the room service…I usually do breakfast that way, but that’s all. Food looks great. You deserve a luxurious weekend!

    • Hopefully it should be posted soon, there are so many photos to go through though😛
      Haha me too, I just wrote that post and I was like ‘I can’t believe we ate so much!’

      Cheers
      Choc Chip Uru

  6. Moritz says:

    The Sofitel looks really good. I especially like the range of food they offer (and the large minibar). Hope you had a very good time (I’m actually sure you had):)

  7. I can see you had a really special experience. The hotel is lovely and well appointed. I’m glad that your first time away by yourself, total independence, went so well. And all the food you shared with us looks really special. I’d love that pita sandwich. This was a really fun post to read, Uru. I’m so happy you had a little break form the Uni grind. I hope you came home refreshed!

  8. hotlyspiced says:

    It’s a lovely looking room. I love the minimalist style and grey tones. Those chips look really crispy and crunchy and yes, it’s expensive but not as pricey as Sydney hotels! xx

  9. shenANNAgans says:

    Oooooo…. So much fun!:) Looks like a fab little adventure.
    Sofitel rocks, and seriously girrrrlll…. some more goss on the very buff blonde at the reception please… Did ya get a sneaky snap of that?! LOL!
    Have a great Friday CCU, and an even better weekend. x

  10. Maureen | Orgasmic Chef says:

    I should have asked where you were staying! I stayed in an apartment hotel not too far from Wandering Cooks and it didn’t come close to the experience you had at the Sofitel! Well done, you!

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