Griffin Hotel

15 Tench St., Canberra, 2604, Australia
Griffin Hotel
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65%

Satisfaction Poor
Excellent
16%
9
Very Good
16%
9
Average
33%
18
Poor
16%
9
Terrible
16%
9

N/A

Value Score No Data

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Good For Solo
  • Families37
  • Couples41
  • Solo50
  • Business44

More about Griffin Hotel

Milton Keynes with Kangaroos?

by kit_mc

"A Capital? Really?"

I first visited Canberra in January 2002 and managed one overnight stay and a whistlestop tour of the sights. Well, when I say tour, I mean, we were mainly lost on roundabouts trying to find a mythical motel and then trying to find our way between various tourist spots that we could often see, beckoning cheekily over the other side of a flyover or grassy mound, but never actually reach. This was because of the interminable grid and roundabout system left as the legacy to planned, utterly artificial urbanscapes by the American architect Walter Burley Griffin. Canberra is the act of nation building, writ large. In concrete. And with roundabouts.

Canberra, which has been translated as 'Meeting Place' from the local Aboriginal language, was chosen as the site for a prospective capital of the newly federated Commonwealth of Australia in 1908, about 7 years after federation and after a lot of political bickering. Melbourne, at that point the largest of the continent's cities remained the home to parliament until 1927 when the 'provisional' parliament house was opened. In 1988, as part of the bi-centenary celebrations, the 'new' parliament opened, completing part of Burley Griffin's plan for this city of concentric circles and axes with its pyramidesque centrepoint.

In 2005 I returned to Canberra, for two weeks to undertake research for my Masters. Now, Canberra isn't the best city to pick in the southern hemisphere to visit during the middle of winter, because it can get fairly cold. I say cold, well, it can drop to zero at night, although during the day I didn't really find it that depressing, mainly because you still have a fairly decent amount of bright daylight throughout the working day.

I have to say, Canberra is not one of my favourite cities, but it has a lot of things going for it, if suburban domesticity is your thing, dualled with some pretty rugged landscapes, bordered by mountains. And because of some legal anomoly of the Australian Capital Territory [ACT] you can both film and purchase pornography there. Oh and with kangaroos on your doorstep - this was the place I saw my first, and very nearly my last, kangaroo as it hopped straight out in front of the car just as I was turning into a friend's street. In fact, the best description I've heard of Canberra is 'A farming town with suits'. Basically, it's got an educated, mainly out of towner population, most of whom have come to Canberra for that all important, cushy number the Australians call, being a Public Servant (English translation, Civil Servant) along with a large student population. In a sense, Canberra is provincial playing at being cosmopolitan.

A lot of the nicer bars and restaurants are rumoured be be out in the suburbs rather than in the town centre, known as Civic. After 5 o'clock, when all the offices, banks and civil service buildings - oh, and museums - have closed, Civic is dead! Absolutely eerily dead! I've never seen anything like it in fact! Canberra does have a reputation nationally as one of the dullest and most sterile places in the country, and it's not really somewhere you're likely to be staying in for any lengthy period of time, unless you know people or you've got a specific reason for staying. But pick a sunny, warm time to go, make sure you've got some mates with you and preferably a car (public transport is notoriously unreliable in ACT) and you could make a worthwhile trip of a few days. Bearing in mind that it's just 3 and a half hours by bus from Sydney, it's kind of silly not to tick it off the list.

What often surprises me is actually just how many Australians have never been to Canberra, and how many others will say with some pride, 'Oh, I've been to Canberra, once, many years ago...' like this is some major achievement. Ok, maybe that's a bit cheeky of me coming from a teeny tiny island country where many people's idea of foreign travel is a weekend in Llandudno (well, they speak a different language don't they?!) or Cyprus (well, they all speak English don't they?). This is indeed a city best avoided in winter, the concrete and planned, low rise city that it is, is just too soulless if the sun isn't shining. However, it is the National Capital after all and that means that if you're into visiting a national this, a national that and not forgetting the national the other, this is the place to come. Some essentials in my opinion are the National Museum, New Parliament, the National Capital Exhibition and the War Memorial, which is a museum rather than simply a statue. Oh, and don't forget Lake Burley Griffin, the artificial corridor of water that separates the city into north and south, Civic and the Government Triangle.

While the thought of actually living there fills me with dread, in some twisted way I have a soft spot for Canberra. Dull as it is, it's all a bit of a contradiction - Capital and Farming Town, urban and country, it's oddly representative of the nation's own identity crisis.

Photos

Lake Burley Griffin, CanberraLake Burley Griffin, Canberra

Burley Griffin's CanberraBurley Griffin's Canberra

Lake Burley Griffin, CanberraLake Burley Griffin, Canberra

Black swan at Lake Burley Griffin, CanberraBlack swan at Lake Burley Griffin, Canberra

Forum Posts

Hotel

by yvr

I have not been able to locate any reviews regarding Hotel Formule 1,in Canberra, part of the Accor group. Does anyone have any information regarding the quality of this property? It is located at Federal Highway and Antill St.
Thanks

Re: Hotel

by yvr

Thanks for the reply, yes, I know Hotel Formule 1 is pretty basic, but have found some good rates for Brisbane with good reviews, so thought I would check out the one in Canberra, am surprised that there are no reviews anywhere that I can find regard this property.

Re: Hotel

by craic

http://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g255060-d498202-Reviews-Formule_1_Kings_Cross-Sydney_New_South_Wales.html

at the bottom of the list of reviews for the sydney formule 1 is a mention of the canberra forumle

i can find no other reviews -

i know this chain are very basic - have you considered wotif.com? that is a site that sells last minute deals (11 days before - though we used it when we went to Italy and it was 22 days before - maybe it has changed)

we have found some very nice (and a few not so nice) places as last minute deals cheaper than cheap places

worth a look

Re: Hotel

by yvr

Hi Craic

Re: Hotel

by yvr

Hi Craic
Hit the wrong button above. Yes, I saw the review which mentioned this hotel. I will probably stay there, as I got a response from the hotel regarding a question. Also, have booked my Greyhound between Canberra and Sydney.

Phil

Re: Hotel

by craic

you'll be just 100 or so kilomtres away from me - where to after canberra?

Re: Hotel

by yvr

Sydney, I looked up your location on Goggle Maps, love to get together and talk buses with you.

Re: Hotel

by craic

wingello is kind of hard to stop off at - and i don't get up to sydney or down to canberra much these days - just working hard so i can clear the decks to get to NZ in April.

But if you can stop off in Wingello we can talk buses.

Re: Hotel

by craic

oh you have already booked your bus between canbera and sydney - too late

so as you thundwer down the Hume Highway just past Marulan look to your right just before you get to Paddy's River and you will see a little yellow sign that says Wingello - 7 k

Travel Tips for Canberra

The new Mt. Stromlo

by rozehill

Mt Stromlo Space Research Centre

There is now a 2m telescope here also has
a 9m IceStorm Co-Rotating Dome

The old building was caught in the serious bush fires of 2003 and now there is this new building

A friend of mine drove me from...

by shrimp56

A friend of mine drove me from Canberra to the mountainous region known as the 'Snowies' -- remember it was 80 degrees fahrenheit in Ballina as you look at the snow in the ski resort of Thredbo! I think this resort was one of the ones that was destroyed in a avalanche/landslide a few years ago.

Go up to the Mount Ainslie...

by Ronald_T


Go up to the Mount Ainslie and have a great lookout over the parliamentary triangle, Lake Burley Griffin and the Carillon. Views of the Australian War Memorial are especially good from this lookout. It was on this spot that the architect Walter Burly Griffin had his inspiration to design the Canberra that it is today.  This is a piece of Griffin's own words about
Mount Ainslie:  '...The site may be considered an irregular amphitheatre with Mount Anslie at the north-east, flanked by Black Mountain and Mount Pleasant all forming the top galleries; with the slopes to the water, the auditorium - the waterway and flood-basin, the arena; with the southern slopes reflected in the basin, the terraced stage and setting of monumental Government structures sharply defined rising tier on tier to the culminating highest internal hill, Capital Hill; and with Mugga Mugga, Red Hill and the blue distant mountain ranges forming the back scene of the theatrical whole...'

Weather

by keeweechic

The temperatures in Canberra vary considerably from summer to winter. Rug up for the winter months as temps often drop below zero at night and are usually below 10C in the day.
.
In summer the temperatures are usually mild but can rise above 30C. Autumn (March to May) in Canberra is simply gorgeous. The days are sunny and crisp, the trees are changing and everything looks lovely.
.

Comments

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 Griffin Hotel

We've found that other people looking for this hotel also know it by these names:

Griffin Canberra
Griffin Hotel Canberra

Address: 15 Tench St., Canberra, 2604, Australia