After the Adelaide city centre, Glenelg is arguably the next most popular part of the city for visitors to stay in. It’s located right on the beach with great restaurants, shops and bars, and has great public transport into the city. But where are you going to stay? Here are the best Glenelg accommodation options for every budget and traveller.
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Feature image photo credit: South Australian Tourism Commission, Glenelg Beach, Adelaide
TL;DR? Here's the outline
Where is Glenelg, South Australia?
Glenelg is located just over 10km to the southwest of the Adelaide city centre on the shores of Holdfast Bay. It is where the first European settlers landed in South Australia with the intent to create a new colony here.
It is linked to the city by tram, and is popular with visitors and locals alike.
In summer Glenelg particularly becomes a drawcard with added attractions such as a European-style beach club and a ferris wheel for that real beach holiday vibe.
With shops, restaurants, activities and attractions, it is worth including at least a day in Glenelg on any Adelaide holiday,
Glenelg is conveniently close to the Adelaide Airport and has bus links right to the terminal, so it is a good alternative option to the city centre for the night before/after a flight.
Almost every type of accommodation can be found in Glenelg, from international hotel brands to holiday homes, motels to B&Bs.
Before Covid there was the Glenelg backpackers hostel here too – let’s hope it returns for the budget travellers. In the meantime, here are some of my picks for the best places to stay in Glenelg.
Best Luxury Accommodation Glenelg
If you are looking to enjoy the finer things in life, then choose to stay at the Stamford Grand Adelaide Resort. This 4-star Glenelg hotel accommodation sits in a prime location right where Jetty Road meets the sea.
The tram to the city departs from right outside the doors, and only metres away you will find restaurants and cafes.
Of course, you may not need those restaurants, because the Grand has its own. The Promenade Restaurant serves breakfast and dinner daily, lunch on Mon-Fri, and high tea Sat-Sun, all with local ingredients and ocean views.
You can also enjoy two different bars, the more relaxed Grand Bar, and the sophisticated Horizons Cocktail Lounge.
A stay in one of the 220 rooms includes access to a pool, spa and gym all with views over the ocean.
In fact, you don’t even have to stay the night to enjoy the facilities, the Grand Hotel at Glenelg also offers “daycation” packages if you just want to stay for a day.
Perfect if you have to check out of your city hotel in the morning but you have an evening flight.
The Stamford Grand Adelaide Resort is also what I would recommend if you were looking for a romantic getaway in Glenelg. Ask about their special Romance and Seduction packages with Black Label extras.
Best Holiday House Glenelg For a Large Group
Are you holidaying with extended family or a larger group of people? This is the Glenelg holiday house for you! This beautiful two-story manor house in the leafy back streets just minutes from the beach has seven bedrooms and enough room for sixteen people.
The pool, garden, BBQ and living areas make you want to stay right here, but if you do venture out, it’s only a few minutes to the beach, Jetty Road for shops and restaurants, and the tram into the city.
Best Glenelg Family Accommodation
Some of the Glenelg hotels and apartments I have already mentioned would work well for family accommodation in Glenelg, such as the Oaks Glenelg Plaza Pier Suites, the West Beach Parks and the Morphett Inn.
The perfect family accommodation would be all about the location. It would be close to the beach and also close to the shops and restaurants on Jetty Road.
While all of the above places have family rooms available, there are two other options that are closer to Jetty Road while also still being close to the beach.
The closest place to Jetty Road is the Holdfast Shores Apartments. They are perfectly located just a block from Jetty Road and across the street from The Beachouse and the beach.
These apartments won’t suit everyone though, as they are only two bedrooms, and require a minimum three-night stay.
Another great option, just a little further down the road, is the Oaks Glenelg Liberty Suites. The 2-bedroom apartments here can sleep five people and they allow single night stays. They also have an indoor pool and gym as a bonus.
Best Glenelg Apartment with a View
If you are looking for an apartment with a view then it has to be one at the Oaks Glenelg Plaza Pier Suites.
These apartments couldn’t get any closer to the beach if they tried, and as such, offer fabulous views over the sea and along the coast – or alternatively, towards the city and the Adelaide Hills.
There are a range of spacious apartments available, from studio right through to three bedrooms. Many of the apartments have balconies, making it a perfect place to admire the view.
Having a full kitchen means you can prepare meals yourself (there is a supermarket only a few minutes away) or you can take advantage of the restaurants right below the apartments or on nearby Jetty Road.
Visitors have access to an indoor pool, so swimming is possible even when the weather is not so great outside. There is also a well-equipped gym too.
Best Pet Friendly Accommodation Glenelg
Most of the pet friendly accommodation in Glenelg tends to be holiday houses, many of them made for multiple people or family groups. If you are looking for something smaller and a little more affordable, the options are limited.
While I think this might be stretching the idea of “Glenelg”, the Morphettville Inn does claim to be located in the suburb.
It can be conveniently found on Anzac Highway near the Morphettville Racecourse and pets are allowed on request.
The rooms are typical motel-style, neat, clean and basic. There is a swimming pool for cooling off in the warmer months and breakfast is available. Right next door is The Junction Bar & Bistro for meals and drinks.
As its name suggests, the Morphettville Motor Inn provides free parking, including for larger vehicles if required. It also has family rooms available, so this would be another good choice if staying in Glenelg with kids.
Best Glenelg Motel on a Budget
When it comes to cheap accommodation Glenelg does have a few options. Mostly motels, they are found further away from the beach, and usually the further away, the cheaper the motel.
A good compromise between distance from the beach and Jetty Road, and the price is the Buffalo Motor Inn. This is standard motel-style accommodation, so don’t be expecting anything flashy or new here.
What you will get is a basic room that is clean and comfortable and still within an easy walk to the beach. You can upgrade your room to include a spa too if you choose.
There are lots of restaurant and cafe options available within a few minutes walk, and parking onsite is free.
The best part – the Buffalo Motor Inn is easier on the wallet than most other motels in Glenelg.
Best Glenelg Caravan Park
Unfortunately, there is not a caravan park in Glenelg – but there is one at West Beach, just a few minutes to the north along the beach.
There is a huge range of accommodation options here, from luxury family villas to glamping tents to standard cabins, caravan sites and camping areas.
Big4 West Beach Parks is the first place to start looking for your caravan park accommodation. It’s a big park and the facilities are numerous. It’s especially popular with families, and even locals like to holiday here.
For a more luxurious stay, take a look at The Retreat at West Beach Parks, located right next door.
This is entirely composed of bungalow and apartment-style accommodation. The facilities are like you would find at a resort – a beautiful swimming pool, play areas, tennis court, BBQ areas etc.
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