As the weather warms up and you’ve got holidays on your mind, we’ve compiled a list of some of Sydney’s best hotels where you can eat, drink and sleep those sunny summer days.
So pillow menus are a thing, at least it you stay at the The Darling or Astral Tower and Residences at The Star. The outdoor pool that’s scented with white tea and eucalyptus is ultimate in luxury in our books and the fully equipped health club comes in handy after all the gorging you’ll do at The Star’s top-notch restaurants. Whether you dine at Momofuku Seibo, BLACK by ezard or Fat Noodle, you won’t have far to collapse into (your pillowy soft) bed if you’re staying at The Star.
Mollymook sounds like the sort of quaint town where Barbie grew up (she didn’t, of course. She hails from Willows, Wisconsin. Look it up). But it is home to Bannisters, a boutique hotel with stunning views of Mollymook beach on the South Coast. As well as refurbished hotel rooms, guests can splash out on a beach house with some pretty stunning sea views. The house is owned by the chef Rick Stein, who also has his pretty self-explanatory restaurant, Rick Stein’s at Bannisters, on the hotel premises. As expected from its coastal location, the place is big on fresh, local seafood. You won’t be disappointed.
In a doorway next to the State Theatre stands a red-headed lady, who looks a lot like a minxier version of Miss Fisher (of Murder Mysteries fame). She is your signpost to the quirky QT Hotel, a dining and sleeping spot that is a little classy, a little boudoir and a whole lotta fun. The Gowings Bar and Grill pays homage to the eponymous men’s apparel store that once occupied the building with a dapper decor oozing dark leather and wood, a brasserie-style menu, and a fine wine list. The accommodations details are all sorts of kooky – a music-sensitive elevator, disembodied hands holding up room numbers, and slick room furnishings. It’s like falling down a 5-star rabbit hole.
‘Tis the foolish traveller who forgets to pack toiletries, and is left rubbing her skin raw with the hotel’s in-house body wash. Luckily, you’ll be forgiven at Jonah’s, because they stock complimentary L’OCCITANE bath amenities. It sounds good, it smells good, and it feels good. Plus, each room has a private balcony with stunning views of Whale Beach. Food-wise, head chef Peter Ridland really knows his seafood, and serves creative dishes of fresh Australian produce. During the summer, there’s a degustation menu that you can savour while overlooking the waves. Gorgeous.
The rooms at The Establishment Hotel are effortlessly elegant. The fussiest of travellers will sleep very comfortably in the studio rooms with their minimalist refinement. All rooms are equipped with an iPad, wifi, Apple TV, and Bose sound system – which pretty much means you don’t need to leave your hotel room. But here’s the best bit… If you can tear yourself away from your room, you’ll be pleased to know the hotel is in the same complex as the best of the Merivale group’s culinary offerings. Mr Wong’s serves us polished Cantonese dumplings, and on the grander scale, est. does the mod-Oz fine-dining thing very well. You’ll eat well and sleep well at the Establishment Hotel.
Get your Downtown Abbey on. At The Residences, you can choose from two Victorian-era, heritage-listed houses for your accommodation needs. These abodes are self-contained, pet-friendly and make for the ultimate home-away-from-home-but-still-in-Sydney experience. You’ll be surrounded by the urban foliage of the sprawling Centennial Park, which – get this – have their own beehives. So during your complimentary breakfast spread, you’ll also be able to sample the honey sourced in the vicinity of your room. Sweet as!
Pullman Quay Grand
You can’t beat harbour views like this. The Pullman is located right on Sydney Harbour with gob-smacking views of the bridge and its shimmering waters. You can enjoy them from the ceiling-high windows of the ECQ bar, or saunter to your hotel room to indulge in plush and private comfort. If for some reason harbour views ain’t your thing, you can always opt for a garden view room, facing the Botanical Gardens. Talk about being spoilt for choice.
If you had $30 million dollars, four months, and the task of refurbishing a boutique hotel, we'd like to think you would have done a decent job. Luckily, you can relax – the folk at The Langham have done the makeover themselves. All you have to do is enjoy. The bright and airy modern rooms offer views of The Rocks and the western Sydney Harbour and, if you have cash to splash, spend a night in the Observatory Suite which overlooks Observatory Hill. Oh, and the indoor turquoise-water swimming pool with a star-studded is simply stunning. Live it up, oppa Langham-style.
InterContinental Sydney Double Bay
A cool $20 million has been spent on the refurbishment of the new InterContinental Sydney Double Bay, the former site of the infamous Ritz-Carlton. The hotel re-opened last month, and it’s looking pretty glam. The rooms are easy, breezy and furnished with modern muted tones. There are some spectacular touches too – if chandeliers tickle your fancy, there’s a beautiful one hanging over the lobby staircase that resembles a trickling fountain of gold origami. The rooftop pool sparkles in the sun, and provides incredible views of Double Bay. For the thirst-addled, the Stillery bar caters to your boutique gin needs – no more dodgy G&Ts!
Watsons Bay Boutique Hotel
With a name like Beach Club, the vibe at the restaurant at Watsons Bay Boutique Hotel already oozes summer relaxation. Of course, seafood gets a solid look-in via classics such as fish ‘n’ chips and seafood platters, or modern salad like seared tuna with pickled carrot and fennel. There’s a short and sharp wine list too, and the breezy beach views create the perfect backdrop for optimal sipping and supping. Hotel stayers can continue the views from the Harbour Loft room, with slick white-brown furnishings.
Image credit: Jonah's