Whether it’s show-stopping harbour vistas or living it up in boutique-style, these luxe Sydney digs offer everything from rooftop pools, high thread count linen, freestanding tubs, star-studded guest lists and more.
In the centre of the city, steps away from Hyde Park, Queen Victoria Building and Town Hall Station, the Porter House Hotel is set in a revived 1800s heritage-listed building with the addition of a new, modern tower next door. Part of Accor’s MGallery collection, the hotel has 122 modern guest rooms, a fitness centre, rooftop swimming pool, and digital valley as well as delicatessen Henry’s Bread and Wine, brasserie Dixson and Sons, and Spice Trader cocktail bar.
Ace Hotel Sydney is the first Australian outpost of the chic boutique brand based in the US. Housed in a heritage former brick factory in Surry Hills, the hotel is a modern, urban space with 264 unique rooms featuring sound-proof textural walls and eco-friendly amenities. Restaurant Kiln is a destination in itself, led by Chef Mitch Orr.
The stylish Kimpton Margot Hotel is another fantastic addition to Sydney's luxury hotel scene. A fusion of Art Deco heritage and modern touches, rooms feature a yoga mat, luxurious robes and there is an extensive range of amenities free to use during your stay, such as phone chargers, straightening irons, humidifiers and international plug adapters. Guests can choose to dine and unwind at four bars and restaurants with renowned chef Luke Mangan at the helm, and the hotel boasts an open-air rooftop pool.
Oxford House is an ultra-cool, boutique hotel set in the heart of Paddington. Styled with minimalist tones, the 56 light-filled rooms feature contemporary artworks and photography. Upstairs there's an exclusive rooftop pool and bar featuring a DJ on weekends, and downstairs a relaxed diner-style restaurant by Tyler Preston.
Swimming pool at Oxford House, Paddington - Credit: Oxford House
For generations, the Department of Education building in Sydney’s Sandstone Precinct has stood quietly, its golden facade forming an unassuming backdrop to the rhythm of the city. The heritage-listed icon is now welcoming guests inside its walls for the very first time as Capella Sydney, the first Australian property by the brand.
There’s even more luxury in the pipeline. In October 2023, the doors will open to W Sydney, set in a striking ribbon-style glass building on Darling Harbour, meanwhile in 2024, a 110-year-old heritage building on Oxford Street in Paddington is also set to be transformed into a luxe 25 Hours Hotel.
Carved from sandstone, the Park Hyatt Sydney boasts arguably the Harbour City’s most coveted address. All 155 guestrooms and suites offer contemporary harbourside luxury with floor-to-ceiling glass doors that open to private balconies. Three elegantly designed rooftop suites – including the city’s largest at 350sqm – showcase just shy of a 360-degree panorama spanning the glorious harbour, the sails of the Opera House and Harbour Bridge. There’s an elegant spa, beauty and fitness centre with a rooftop pool and terrace, 24/7 butler service and a private wharf.
On Circular Quay’s eastern side, 68 spacious one and two-bedroom apartment-style suites overlook either the sparkling harbour or the Botanic Gardens at the Pullman Quay Grand Sydney Harbour. There’s an indoor pool with a 24-hour gym, sauna and sun deck with floor-to-ceiling views, 24-hour room service, a light-filled restaurant and Cuban plantation inspired waterfront bar. Meanwhile, if you walk across to the western side, you will find Pier One Sydney Harbour by the Autograph Collection, nestled under the Harbour Bridge and boasting absolute waterfront suites.
Five star Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour offers 590 luxurious rooms and suites with luxurious soaking tubs, wraparound harbour views, a Champagne bar and an alfresco pool. Complimentary canapes and drinks, afternoon tea, and a la carte breakfast are served at Club Millésime for Club Sofitel guests.
Favoured by A-listers, The Darling’s boutique feel belies its Star City casino address. Elle McPherson, Justin Bieber and George Clooney are but a few celebrities to sleep in the hotel’s 171 luxurious rooms and suites. There’s also a world-class day spa, 25m lap pool, custom-made beds, fine-dining Japanese restaurant and arresting harbour views.
While the 275m Crown Sydney is the city’s tallest hotel, towering above Barangaroo. It also has a sprawling rooftop pool deck, lush Crown Spa, 14 bars and restaurants, and 349 guest rooms including 22 ultra-luxe private villas.
Harbour view from Opera Studio room at Crown Towers Sydney, Barangaroo - Credit: George Apostolidis
History, luxury and legacy converge at the Fullerton Hotel Sydney in the one-time GPO building. Dine in-house on modern Australian fare with a southeast Asian twist, sleep in one of the 416 contemporary rooms and delve deeper into the 1874 landmark building’s storied past, designed by colonial architect James Barnet, with a free history tour.
Sitting pretty in Sydney’s historic Rocks precinct, the Langham Sydney is the epitome of timeless elegance. Ninety-eight luxurious rooms and suites are housed within this low-rise boutique property which includes a health club, day spa, art collection curated by Sotherby’s and an indoor pool with a star-studded ceiling. Five-star suites overlook the harbour’s western side, while traditional English high tea and cocktails are served in the opulent Observatory Bar – considered one of Sydney’s best. Pampered pooches welcome.
Junior Suite at The Langham Sydney - Credit: The Langham Sydney
Want boutique style and harbour views? The multi-award-winning Ovolo Woolloomooloo fuses cutting edge interiors with a prime waterfront locale. Within walking distance of the CBD and Sydney Opera House, the Finger Wharf hotel sits adjacent to the Royal Botanic Gardens and within strolling distance to the famous Andrew Boy Charlton Pool. The hotel’s design has brought to life the historic Sydney wharves in its 100 guest rooms and undeniably chic Alibi Bar and Kitchen, Australia’s first 100 per cent plant-based hotel restaurant.
Made up of three heritage-listed 1870's terrace houses Spicers Potts Point marries Sydney heritage with contemporary interiors and striking artwork by Australian artist Martine Emdur (renowned for her underwater paintings). There’s also a compact but light-filled breakfast room, honesty bar and cosy library.
Melding the creative vision of Singaporean hotelier Loh Lik Peng with Chippendale’s gritty industrial past, the Old Clare Hotel offers a stylish bar set in a curvaceous former pub, two stellar restaurants and rooftop pool. There are 69 hip-rooms, including four suites with freestanding cast iron baths and curated artworks.
From humble beginnings as a roadhouse, Jonah’s multiple incarnations have seen it evolve into the much-lauded retreat par excellence it is today. A fine dining restaurant, infinity pool and 11 elegant rooms with spa bath, private balconies, Frette robes, high-pressure walk-in showers and AH Beard king beds offer sensational views over Sydney’s Whale Beach at every turn. For the ultimate rock star arrival, splurge on a 20-minute seaplane flight from Rose Bay.
In Sydney’s eastern suburbs, the swanky InterContinental Sydney Double Bay offers 140 spacious rooms and suites with private balconies, club lounge, spa and 24-hour gym in the leafy Eastern Suburbs enclave. Its trump card is the Amalfi Coast-inspired rooftop pool with cabanas for soaking up the legendary harbour vistas.
Destination NSW acknowledges and respects Aboriginal people as the state’s first people and nations and recognises Aboriginal people as the Traditional Owners and occupants of New South Wales land and water.