West Hotel: Is this Sydney CBD’s chicest hotel?

The West Hotel Sydney’s 182 rooms are aimed at the city traveller who appreciates a central location with modern interiors. Elegant bedrooms have an art deco influence, an in-house restaurant rustles up modern dishes and being close to Sydney’s star attractions, including Sydney Harbour, makes it a superb location for a Sydney stay.

Traveller: Nardia Plumridge
Room: King Waratah Premium
Address: 65 Sussex Street, Sydney NSW 2000
Prices range from $252 to $454
Best for the business traveller or tourist wanting to be in the heart of Sydney

West Hotel Sydney sleek glass exterior.
West Hotel Sydney’s sleek glass exterior


Smack bang in Sydney city centre by Barangaroo, a neighbourhood that has become rather hip in the past few years with its modern development by the waterfront. What was a disused container terminal has evolved into a mix of residential and entertainment offerings, becoming a popular cultural and commercial precinct.

Within a short walk, you can find…

Barangaroo’s numerous bars, Darling Harbour and its waterside eateries, Sea Life Sydney Aquarium, Sydney’s CBD and Wynyard train station a five-minute walk which has many transport options to zip you around Sydney. Shopping on Pitt Street is only a few blocks away too.

Claim to fame

Designer style for a reasonable price and that location. West Hotel Sydney opened in late 2017 and still retains a new shiny veneer. The interior design is by Melbourne-based Woods Bagot, who have merged the hotel’s industrial past location wise with nature – it features a three-story high courtyard atrium filled with ferns and tropical plants. Charcoal brickwork and timber floors add a sleek and chic feel to the interiors, while outside, the geometric glass facade makes a bold statement.

A three-story high courtyard atrium filled with ferns and tropical plants at the West Hotel Sydney.
A three-story high courtyard atrium filled with ferns and tropical plants

The showstopper

The room’s interior design: black panelled feature wall and sophisticated luxe furnishings. Sleek marble and slate bathroom. A 49-inch HD smart TV with Google Chromecast is neatly positioned to watch at pillow level. Complimentary mini bar with sparkling Chardonnay and chilled Pinot by Riot Wine Co. replenished daily. Why go out when you can stay in?

The family factor

Connecting rooms are a bonus for travellers with older kids. The twin rooms feature two king singles, and the hotel offers cots and fold-out beds on request. There isn’t any outside space or kids club, so the hotel is more suited to the city traveller sans children.

The rooms at the West Hotel Sydney are a showstopper.
The rooms at the West Hotel Sydney are a showstopper

The room

I stayed on the 7th floor with views out towards Darling Harbour. The room is a showstopper. A feature wall is clad in black wood. Black carpet with motif design is in keeping with the art deco luxe styling. Dark green, teal and blue velvet furnishings give the room an opulent feel.

A corner marble-topped table can fit a laptop so acts as a desk space, and several spot lamps create soft lighting come nighttime. A built-in blue tooth sound system also has a speaker in the bathroom, so you can shimmy in the shower whilst lathering up using blissfully scented Biology products. A capsule coffee machine makes mornings instantly more bearable.

Sleek marble and slate bathroom comes with Biology beauty products

Beyond the rooms

As it is a central city hotel, the venue lacks a pool or outside place. However, it does have a small fitness room with some weights. A singular bar cum restaurant on the lobby level is as chic as the bedrooms. Solander Dining is named after the first fleet botanist Daniel Solander in a nod to their focus on sustainable and seasonal NSW produce. A cocktail menu has been created around fresh botanicals while the food menu has the hotel classics: club sandwiches, burgers, spaghetti bolognese and a grill for steaks and salmon.

I wish I could take home…

Full-sized bottles of those Biology products. Lush body moisturiser and hair wash and conditioner are laced with essential oils of rosemary, grapefruit and lemongrass.

Dish to dine for:

Being a gnocchi fan, I couldn’t go past trying their offering: Gnocchi with green pea, tarragon, chervil, confit of garlic and preserved lemon. It was a light, spring-like dish finished with shaved parmesan. Baked brie with a side of toasted bread and pickled gherkins made for an indulgent starter. The room service menu is the same as the restaurant, should you prefer to dine upstairs in your room.

Baked brie (left) and Gnocchi with green pea, tarragon, chervil, confit of garlic and preserved lemon.
Baked brie (left) and Gnocchi with green pea, tarragon, chervil, confit of garlic and preserved lemon

Amenity game

Is exceptional. Local brand, Biology is a natural range of Australian made hair and body care products that smell as good as they feel on your skin. Their “Naked Formulas” mean the products are free from sulphates, parabens and nasty chemicals. The contemporary monochrome packaging suits the hotel’s bathroom styling with its black frosted glass shower and marble sink. It would equally look great in my home bathroom, just saying.

Before booking…

As a city stay over, the West Hotel Sydney is busy all year round. So, plan ahead and ask for a room on the 7th or 8th floor for the best views.

Insiders’ tips

You can earn points as part of the loyalty program, Hilton Honors, as the hotel is part of Hilton’s Curio Collection, a portfolio of independent upscale boutique hotels run by Hilton Worldwide.

Staying in

There is a fitness centre on the first floor for the active. Or you might prefer to simply stay in and enjoy the complimentary mini bar in one of their fluffy robes. The breakfast buffet is worth getting up for at 7am. Marinated portobello mushrooms, soft scrambled egg and roasted tomatoes with a side of seeded sourdough bread are all for the taking. A quality mix of fresh fruits and coconut chia cups, smoked salmon and cheeses also feature on the spread.

The laneways of Barangaroo are filled with local cafes, restaurants and shops.
The laneways of Barangaroo are filled with local cafes, restaurants and shops

Stepping out

Only two blocks from Darling Harbour, take a stroll along the promenade that is lined with bars and restaurants ideal for a sunset cocktail. The Wulugul Walk runs along the Barangaroo precinct foreshore and will take you all the way to the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Explore the laneways of Barangaroo’s southern hub with its eateries, and the Crown Casino. Festivals like the Biennale of Sydney and the Vivid Sydney Light Festival also happen in this neighbourhood annually.

If only…

They had thicker doonas. Beds are dressed in crisp white linen and are king in size, yet the doona was so thin it lacked warmth and that cosy feel you often have in hotel beds. I had to ask for two blankets to layer up, which they had, thankfully.

V&T expert rating

8/10 West Hotel Sydney has the perfect mix of location, modern styling and in-house amenities to suit the chic city traveller.

The writer travelled as a guest of the West Hotel Sydney but her opinions are her own.

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