Our Concierge Team
Heading to Chapel Street and want to shop where those with a passion for fashion get their look? Looking for a café in the city where your coffee choices include espresso, plunger, stovetop, cold-drip and siphon? Or have you heard about Brunswick Street in Fitzroy and want to be pointed to the coolest bars on the strip? Then let the We Know Melbourne Concierge Team guide you to the best places that Melbourne has to offer!
We are very proud to introduce our We Know Melbourne Concierge team – Chris Pappas, David Johnston and Matthew Candeland. They get out and about regularly, discovering the best of where to eat, drink, shop and be entertained in Melbourne. They won’t recommend anywhere they haven’t actually tried or liked themselves. After all, you might not have that much time in our great city, so their job is to make sure you can make the most of your time and enjoy the very best experiences that Melbourne has to offer.
Chief Concierge – Chris Pappas
Meet our Chief Concierge, Chris Pappas. Chris is a born and bred Melburnian who has been sharing his insight with our guests for over 8 years now. He truly knows his way around town and he is never happier than when sharing his incredible knowledge and passion with our guests. Spend some time with Chris and you'll fall under the spell of his infectious charm and understand why he received the 2009 Alfred Jasinski Excellence In Service Award – recognizing him as Melbourne’s best Concierge.
Over the years Chris has taken part in much of what Melbourne has to offer, although he still finds fantastic new cafes, restaurants, bars and attractions hidden around every corner. recent favourite Melbourne moments include dining on delicious Italian fare at Grossi Florentino and Manchuria Bar – hidden away in Chinatown reminiscent of a sleek and sexy opium den serving Asian inspired cocktails. Although Chris can never go past a family day out at the Royal Melbourne Zoo.
Assistant Concierge – Matthew Candeland
Matt is a true Melbourne boy and having traveled to every major city in Australia, he can safely say that Melbourne is his absolute favorite. He is very knowledgeable about Melbourne city and his friendly outgoing attitude is often commented on by guests.
One of Matt’s favorite things to do in Melbourne includes taking a stroll through one of the many city laneways. In particular, he loves the urban ‘artwork’ in laneways such as Union Lane, Hosier Lane and AC/DC Lane.
For a quick and tasty meal, Matt will direct you to Sette Bello on Hardware Lane, just a short walk from the hotel. Matt also enjoys heading to the ACMI at Federation Square for unique and modern art installations and the family friendly Screen Worlds. Matt’s favourite recent discovery would have to be Manchester Press – the bagels are fantastic and the coffee is like artwork, literally!
Having studied at the Victorian College of the Arts, Matt also takes a personal interest in Melbourne's theatre scene - whether it be large scale musicals such as Rock of Ages or intimate local theatre, if there is a show to see... he'll know about it.
Assistant Concierge – James Tucker
Our newest addition to the concierge desk, James Tucker, is Victorian born and bred having grown up in Phillip Island then moving to the big smoke. James has recently finished a 2 year stint as a flight attendant and is glad to have his feet firmly planted on the ground in our wonderful city.
James has spent his time diving into everything that Melbourne has to offer and is still amazed that each day brings new discoveries in bars, restaurants and tourist attractions alike. Whilst his preferred recommendations include a game of footy at the MCG during winter, or a round of golf at picturesque Albert Park Golf Course. James also enjoys some great pub grub and a drink or 2 with friends at Young & Jackson. For a great cocktail with amazing views his personal favourite bar is Transit.
Autumn & Winter Melbourne Recommendations
In Melbourne, we’re spoilt for choice; with incredible cafes, cosy bars, inspiring galleries, fabulous shopping and more – there is so much to do and see that you need never be idle. To help you navigate your way around town and to ensure you experience only the very best the city has to offer, our team has done all the research for you, so we asked them to share their favourite things about Melbourne in Autumn and Winter. Here’s what they had to say…
Favourite place to keep warm in the city?
Chris: The National Gallery of Victoria is a favourite among Melbournians to visit during Winter, it showcases some of the world’s most exquisite paintings from well-known artists. NGV also hosts a very popular Winter Masterpieces exhibition every year which focuses on either a specific artist or a collection of themed works -this year the focus is on Napoleon; Revolution to Empire.
Matt: In one of Melbourne’s famous theatres watching some of the best actors doing their thing on stage. For example getting to see Geoffrey Rush play Lady Bracknel in The Importance of Being Earnest. An absolutely fabulous show, one of the best I have ever seen.
James: The I MAX Theater Melbourne Museum is nothing short of amazing, being the biggest 3D screen in the world it makes for some extraordinary viewing experiences.
Favourite winter dish and where?
Chris: Nothing beats a warm, home-made soup during winter and you can't go past the original Soup Place - In A Rush at Centre Place. With a selection of 12 different soups, this little "blink and you'll miss it" cafe is sure to satisfy your appetite. From the classic Minestrone Soup to your more unique Moroccan and European influenced flavours, there's something for everyone.
Matt: Normally I’d recommend a hearty soup, stew or roast… but the corn fritters in our very own Soul Café are to-die-for!
James: My favorite winter dish would have to be the lamb shanks with vegetable ratatouille and mash potato at the Grill Steak Seafood on Hardware Lane, The meat just falls off the bone and melts in your mouth and the mash is soft and fluffy.
Favourite autumn/winter activity?
Chris: A favourite past-time during winter is Ice Skating, and Melbourne has one of the best rinks in Australia - Icehouse! Grab a friend or take the family and enjoy a fun day on ice!!
Matt: Even though it’s a little bit cold, going for a bike ride down St Kilda Road, and watching as the leaves change colour and then fall from the big Plane Trees.
James: I love walking around the city’s laneways checking out all that Melbourne has to offer stopping at a café getting a hot chocolate and watching the world go by.
The best vantage point to watch a Melbourne storm?
Chris: Nestled 236 metres above ground, up on the 55th floor of the Rialto Building, The Lui Bar is probably the best place to appreciate Melbourne's temperamental winter weather. Open everyday of the week, sit back on the comfy couches, order yourself a scotch on the rocks and take in some of the most spectacular views of Melbourne. Run by the team behind the very successful and award winning Vue De Monde restaurant.
Matt: The higher the better I say, so Eureka Tower. Although when I was growing up living in the family home I enjoyed listening to the rain on the tin roof. Unfortunately I have not yet found something similar in Melbourne however sitting in Captains of Industry with a cafe latte watching the rain pour down on Elizabeth Street has a similar therapeutic feel.
James: Transit Cocktail Lounge located at Federation square has beautiful views of South Melbourne and Surrounds.
Favourite beverage to keep you warm and where?
Chris: The Long Room on Collins Street is a popular bar and a favourite hangout for drinks after work. Enjoy the plush surroundings, reminiscent of a New York bar, while sipping on a chili-choc martini to keep you warm during the cold night and days!
Matt: An apple martini at Transit Lounge will definitely take the chill out of the bones… very cinnamoni - just like an apple pie!
James: Campari House Rooftop bar is a beautiful spot to keep warm with an amazing cappuccino.
3 reasons why Melbourne is better than Sydney.
1. You can watch a footy match at one of the best arena's in Australia, the MCG!
2. Our historical and unique laneways and arcades. Definitely worth a visit.
3. We have trams.... The best way to venture out and see our marvelous city!
1. Touring the city streets while drinking and eating on the Tram Car restaurant
2. Melbourne’s vibrant and exciting theatre scene
3. And us, your wonderful We Know Melbourne concierge team.
1. Melbourne has The Eureka Tower which has the highest public vantage point in the Southern Hemisphere.
2. Chapel street, shopping! need I say more… from boutique shopping to high end retail it has it all.
3. The vast selection of café’s to Cocktail Bars in Melbourne just a hop skip and a jump away.