If you're looking for a 5-star hotel in Brisbane right on the river with amazing views and a buzzing atmosphere, look no further than the Crystalbrook Vincent.

Formerly known as The Fantauzzo, the Crystalbrook Vincent, located underneath the Story Bridge, offers timeless elegance filled with artworks by painter Vincent Fantauzzo throughout the entire property.

The Fantauzzo
Lobby art at the Crystalbrook Vincent
Crystalbrook Vincent Brisbane
The Crystalbrook Vincent Hotel is located under the Story Bridge

Walking into the lobby felt like walking into an art gallery, with the friendly staff greeting me on the other side of the reception counter that's set against the huge nature cliff wall covered in greenery at its backdrop.

The hotel prides itself on sustainable practices and is a fully smoke-free hotel, which I both truly appreciate. Additionally, the hotel emphasises on cashless payment methods, eliminating the need for physical currency.

From the check-in to walking down the corridor covered in art to walking into the room, everything felt thoughtfully designed.

Crystalbrook Vincent Brisbane
Views of the Story Bridge from the room
Crystalbrook River Master Balcony
Lounge area inside the room

Staying at the River Master Balcony Room

I stayed at the Crystalbook Vincent in a River Master Balcony room which features a private balcony overlooking the Brisbane River and the famous Story Bridge.

My room 305 had all the amenities and the creature comforts you could ask for, including a huge ensuite bathroom, a comfortable king bed with extra pillows as well as a lounge area and kitchenette with fridge, Nespresso machine and a minibar.

Rest assured, I loved having a comfy bath robe and slippers, which come in bright purple, to wear around as well.

River Master Balcony Room
Inside the River Master Balcony room
Crystalbrook Vincent Skyline Views
Views from the room balcony on level 3

The best thing about the River Master Balcony room was the massive balcony with the railing that's covered with beautifully green creeper plants making for a great frame for the stunning 180-degree view of the iconic Story Bridge, Brisbane River and skyline. I could've sat here all day watching the boats go by on the river.

As I tucked into bed at night, I was a bit afraid things could get loud on a Saturday night facing the Wharves, but honestly, I didn't hear a thing from the restaurants or music outside and neither from the traffic going over the Story Bridge.

Master River Balcony Room at Crystalbrook Vincent
Lounging in the comfy robes
Crystalbrook Vincent Story Bridge
Views from the balcony of room 305

Crystalbrook Vincent Room Types & Facilities

Other room options include the Nature Wall room, which offers an open plan layout facing away from the Brisbane River and instead offers a view of the cliffs covered in lush greenery.

Choose the Promenade or Promenade Master Room if you're wanting to feel right among the action while your windows overlook the Howard Smith Wharves and view up to the Story Bridge.

The River and River Master Rooms are a little higher up and will get you spectacular views of the Brisbane River, Story Bridge and Brisbane skyline.

Lastly, there are also Family rooms with two king beds as well as 2-bedroom suites, perfect if you need two extra beds or separate sleeping areas.

You can check availability & room rates here.

Heated Infinity Pool overlooking the Story Bridge

The Crystalbrook Vincent Brisbane's infinity pool is heated year-around, so I went for a morning swim.

Perched high above the city skyline and Brisbane River, the pool offers breathtaking panoramic views while providing the perfect oasis to relax and do a few laps, the perfect way to start the day.

Crystalbrook Vincent Infinity Pool
Infinity pool underneath the Story Bridge
Crystalbrook Vincent 5 star Brisbane Hotel Pool
Crystalbrook Vincent pool views

Location: The only hotel near Howard Smith Wharves

The Crystalbrook Vincent Brisbane boasts a prime location right at the Howard Smith Wharves. It's the only hotel that offers unrivaled proximity to this vibrant and rejuvenated entertainment precinct.

From the moment I stepped out of the hotel's lobby doors, I found myself amongst a bustling atmosphere and picturesque river views of the Howard Smith Wharves that were just a stone's throw away. Being so close allowed me to easily explore the mix of riverside dining and entertainment without worrying about transportation.

There's secure parking right underneath the hotel as well if you're coming by car.

Getting around

You can easily walk to plenty of places like the CBD, the Valley and Kangaroo Point, just to mention the closest.

Additionally, the hotel offers stylish Dutch Lekker Bicycles with every room, which makes it super fast to get to other parts of Brisbane, and I used the bike to get to both New Farm Park and Queen Street, Brisbane's main pedestrian shopping street.

Being so close to the wharves, yet not far from the city is definitely convenient and, in my eyes, makes the Crystalbrook Vincent Brisbane the perfect choice for anyone seeking a stay in the heart of Brisbane without having to stay in a skyscraper.

Crystalbrook Vincent Bike Hire
Free bikes from the hotel to get around
Jan Powers Farmers Markets
Saturday Farmers Markets in New Farm

Sustainability at the Crystalbrook Vincent

The Crystalbrook Vincent lives up to its motto, “responsible luxury” and has implemented a range of sustainable practices, including energy-efficient lighting and air conditioning, water conservation measures, and waste management initiatives.

They are committed to sourcing local, organic, and ethically produced ingredients and promoting sustainable dining experiences in both their rooftop bar Fiume and breakfast restaurant Mews which is next to the lobby downstairs.

Fiume rooftop bar Brisbane
Mitigate your environmental impact
#ResponsibleLuxury

In the room, I spotted a reusable glass water jug, which I could fill up at any hour of the day at the filter water stations located on every floor. What I found pretty cool was that the keycard to get into the room was made out of wood instead of plastic.

In the bathroom, I quickly noticed the big pump bottles of shampoo and body wash instead of tiny plastic tubs that are just enough to wash your hair once. Opening the cupboard, I discovered the hangers were made out of recycled cardboard from birthday cards and movie tickets; brilliant!

I absolutely love that the Crystalbrook Vincent is dedicated to helping build an environment free from single-use plastic, which aligns with my core values of building my sustainable towel brand.

Best things to do in Brisbane on a weekend

There are plenty of things to do in Brisbane on a weekend getaway.

Below are a few things that offer a mix of cultural experiences, natural beauty, adventure, and culinary delights in the city that I've done and recommend. Of course, there are also plenty of day trips if you've got some more time!

Explore South Bank: Take a leisurely stroll along the picturesque South Bank Parklands, enjoy a picnic by the river, visit the Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Art (QAGOMA), or take a dip in Streets Beach, Brisbane's man-made beach.

Visit the Jan Powers Farmers Markets at the Powerhouse: On a Saturday morning in Brisbane, don't miss the opportunity to visit the farmers market in New Farm. You can easily bike here along the river from the Crystalbrook. At the market, you'll find fresh produce, baked goods, gourmet treats, and local delicacies, all sourced directly from local farmers and producers. There's usually live music as well, be prepared for crowds and a bustling market ambiance.

Shop at Queen Street Mall: Need some retail therapy? Head to Queen Street Mall for a wide range of boutique shops, international brands, and department stores, as well as a variety of cafes and restaurants.

Go on a Brisbane Food and Wine Tour: Join a guided food tour where you'll be taken on a gastronomic journey through the vibrant food scene of Brisbane. Indulge in local delicacies, sample exquisite wines, and savour flavours from a range of cuisines. Find hidden gems in bustling neighbourhoods and get a real insider's perspective on Brisbane's culinary landscape.

Brisbane Food Tour
Authentic Thai cuisine at Phat Boy
Brisbane Food and Wine Tour
Persone Italian Restaurant at the Brisbane Quarter

Climb the Story Bridge: Marvel at the Story Bridge from your room or opt for an adrenaline-pumping adventure and breathtaking views of the city as you gear up for a guided climb to the top of the Story Bridge. Marvel at the panoramic vistas of Brisbane's skyline and the Brisbane River. Best to be enjoyed at sunrise or sunset.

Have a drink at Fiume rooftop bar: Treat yourself to rooftop views and a drink at Fiume, the rooftop bar located atop the Crystalbrook Vincent Hotel. Order your choice of classic or unique cocktail to sip while enjoying panoramic views of Brisbane's skyline and the Brisbane River. They open from 4 pm and I recommend you come here for sunset. Don't miss out on finding your way up the stairs to the pool area to get a stunning panorama over the entire bar and hotel infinity pool.

Fiume Bar Crystalbrook Vincent
My favourite cocktail was the Amalfi Coast
Fiume Rooftop Bar
View of Fiume rooftop bar from the pool area

Take a CityCat Ferry Ride: As a local, getting on the CityCat is a mode of transportation rather than a sightseeing adventure. However, if you've never been to Brisbane, it's a great way to see the city from a different perspective (and much cheaper and more flexible than booking a river cruise). Enjoy this scenic ride along the Brisbane River and access various riverside destinations, including popular neighbourhoods like New Farm, Bulimba, and West End.

Explore Mount Coot-tha: If you've got some additional time and want to escape the city buzz, I recommend you venture to Mount Coot-tha. Take a leisurely hike along one of the scenic trails, surrounded by lush greenery and native wildlife. Or drive up to the summit and be rewarded with breathtaking panoramic views of the city skyline and beyond. Mount Coot-tha is the perfect spot for a romantic picnic and has a beautiful light around sunrise and sunset.

Mount Cootha Brisbane
Get a glimpse of the city skyline from Mount Coot-tha

Where to eat in Brisbane near Howard Smith Wharves

When it comes to dining at Howard Smith Wharves, you'll find a range of exceptional restaurants to satisfy every palate.

If you're craving Japanese cuisine with a modern twist, Yoko Yoko is the place to be. Indulge in their sushi rolls, sashimi, and flavourful izakaya-style dishes while enjoying the lively atmosphere and stunning river views.

For a taste of the Mediterranean, Greca serves up Greek-inspired delights in a stylish and vibrant setting. From mouthwatering grilled meats to fresh seafood and traditional dips, each dish at Greca is a delightful celebration of Greek flavours. An absolute favourite!

In the row with Greca, you also find Stanley Restaurant, which serves modern Chinese cuisine, including dim sum, a variety of stir-fries, and their signature roast duck.

For those in search of refreshing craft beers and a relaxed atmosphere, Felons Brewing Co is the go-to spot. It's got a laid-back and young atmosphere with a variety of tables, high bar tables along the waterfront, and a section with bean bags, all complete with riverside vibes.

And last but not least, overwater bar Mr Percival's has some innovative cocktails on the menu with a snack-style menu including burgers and pizzas. I ordered a burger which was ok, but I'd almost preferred to just come here for drinks and eat a Betty's Burger across the road before.

On Sunday morning, I went for a stroll along the river and spotted Gigi's Homestyle Cooking was busy with people getting coffee and breakfast.

Crystalbrook Vincent Brisbane – Final Words

When it comes to luxury hotels in Brisbane, the Crystalbrook Vincent certainly should be on your list to consider. Whether you're planning a romantic weekend getaway, are on a city trip with the family, or just need a little R&R, the Crystalbrook Vincent has got it all.

With stunning artwork by Vincent Fantauzzo, great nearby dining options, a heated outdoor swimming pool, and a rooftop bar with views that will take your breath away, every detail is designed to make your stay in Brisbane unforgettable.

Thank you to the Crystalbrook Vincent, who invited me to stay. All opinions are my own.

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