Wondering where to stay in Sydney for a stylish city-break or staycation? I’ve rounded up my favourite boutique hotels in Sydney, that fuse flawless design with picturesque views and, at a few of them, even the mini-bar is included!
Where to Stay in Sydney
In a nutshell, here’s where this Sydney local recommends you stay in Sydney. Scroll down for the full low-down on each property.
- Best for harbour views – Hotel Palisade
- Best for drool-worthy design – The Old Clare Hotel
- Best for free swag – Ovolo 1888 & Ovolo Woolloomooloo
- Best priced boutique hotel – Urban Newtown
- Best for beachy vibes – Watsons Bay Boutique Hotel
- Best for shopaholics – QT Sydney
7 Best Boutique Hotels in Sydney
1. Hotel Palisade
The styling is on-point at Hotel Palisade, which combines old-world charm with modern luxury. There are just 8 elegant rooms in the revamped Millers Point building and all of them offer picture-perfect views of Sydney Harbour sweeping from Barangaroo to the Harbour Bridge. You needn’t go far for cocktails as one of Sydney’s most stylish bars, the Henry Deane, occupies the top 2 levels of Hotel Palisade and has knock out views of Sydney from its floor-to-ceiling windows.
2. The Old Clare Hotel
Hands down the best-looking boutique hotel in Sydney (IMHO) is the The Old Clare Hotel. I mean, what’s not to love about exposed brick, soft shades of grey and free-standing bath tubs? Straddling two heritage-listed buildings in Chippendale (The Clare Hotel pub and the Carlton & United Breweries Administration Building), the Old Clare matches its eye-catching aesthetics with ‘fancy facilities’ including three restaurants, a rooftop pool and two bars. If your room isn’t Instagrammable enough then the dishes served at Kensington Street Social (Michelin-starred chef Jason Atherton’s joint) certainly will be.
3. Ovolo 1888 Darling Harbour
Comic book fans will feel right at home among the primary colour painted walls of Ovolo 1888 Hotel Darling Harbour. Rooms at this boutique property range from the ‘Shoebox’ for solo travellers to the ‘Stirred’ Suite fit for superheroes, all of which come with free wi-fi and breakfast included. The perks don’t stop there though as at Ovolo Hotels (they have another stunning property in Woolloomooloo) the mini-bar and a swag bag full of snacks are thrown in for free also. When you’re done with the complimentary beer, wine and soft drinks in you room, head to the communal Lo Lounge between 5 and 7pm for more even freebies, including sparkling wine, spirits and hot snacks. (I love a bit of mini quiche, me.)
4. The Urban Newtown
The best-priced boutique hotel in Sydney is the Urban Newtown, which is conveniently located near the bustling bars and cheap eateries of King Street. The rooms have a pared-back industrial vibe with a few quirky pieces of artwork, but personally I was most delighted by the complimentary pastries in the lobby and free mini-bar, including craft beer, local wine and giant bars of Kit Kat choccie. (Thrown in when you book direct with the property.)
5. Watsons Bay Boutique Hotel
Watsons Bay Boutique Hotel is perfect for a staycation in Sydney. It’s like a little slice of the seaside, just a short ferry ride from Circular Quay and with stunning city/sunset views guaranteed. I booked my parentals into a Harbour View room when they were visiting and little touches like the Palm Beach candles giving out seductive scents and the tea tray with T2 tea and biccies made their experience super cosy. The hotel is also a popular spot for drinks and share plates on a Sunday but can get booked up with wedding parties on the weekend, so you might want to consider a mid-week stay for a more chilled out experience.
6. Harbour Rocks
If you’re looking for a stylish boutique hotel within spitting distance of Sydney Harbour then look no further than the Harbour Rocks Hotel. Nestled in the oldest part of Sydney, the Harbour Rocks Hotel is filled with heritage charm, especially in the Superior Rooms that were designed as worker’s cottages in the 1800’s. Also filled with vintage charm is Creperie Suzette, a gorgeous French creperie and coffee shop the hotel has created from an antique store on the property.
7. QT Sydney
The quirkiest boutique hotel in Sydney is the QT Sydney on Market Street (i.e. mere metres from Myer, Topshop and ALL THE SHOPPING on Pitt Street). Found within the historic Gowings Department Store and State Theatre buildings, the QT has an old-fashioned, theatrical feel that certainly make your stay memorable. The sumptuous, stately rooms come with fun extras like cocktail shakers and innovative mini bar items including emergency bow-ties. (You never know when you need to suit up, right?) I’m also a big fan of their Parlour Lane Roasters for a mid-shop pick-me-up and SpaQ is worth checking out for its unusual apothecary decor.
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Featured image thanks to Hotel Palisade.
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