A group of 5 of us will be in Melbourne in mid-May and we've basically settled on the Fitzroy area and right now have two places that look great:
The Loft - Fitzroy North http://www.thefitzroyloft.com.au/
FitzGeorge - Fitzroy http://www.fitzgeorge.com.au/
We're having a hard time deciding between the two - maybe you all can help? If you've stayed at either, we'd love to hear your reviews, ditto for other recommendations in the area.
1) quiet and safe
2) interesting places in walking distance, say within 15 min walk. Interesting for us = cafes, shops, restaurants, lounge. Things that stay open past 6pm ideally for relaxed evenings close by.
3) super easy access to the CBD, Richmond shopping
4) easy to drive to and from. We'll have a car. While we're in Melbourne we want to visit Healesville and the Yarra Valley for sure. (We're driving the GOR before arriving in Melb).
Also... and this is a long shot probably, but we'd love to get at least a taste of "outback" while we're there. Even just a chance to see red red earth and far far horizons. We only have 2 days - probably just 1 night, a stretch might make it 2 nights and would like to keep our costs down so nothing too extravagant. Does anyone have any suggestions? Uluru is probably out... yes? But how far, minimally, would we have to drive from Melb to see the outback-type vista?