Sydney is so hot right now. In every sense of the word. And the new Ovolo Hotel in Woolloomooloo is about the hottest property in town!
I just spent four days in Sydney to attend an awesome bloggers event put on by www.cheapflights.co.nz, a web-scraping site well worth visiting in your quest for cheap flights. We also heard from the great Canadian blogging duo Dave and Deb of The Planet D and my homework is to come up with a mission statement for this site! But I digress… The day I left the mercury was expected to hit 42˚C.
Sydney is also hot property for tourists and hotels with rooms available within walking distance of the Opera House, Darling Harbour, Circular Quay or the shops on Pitt Street are about as hard to find as a koala roaming the CBD. (Not really because that would be silly.)
I had heard about Ovolo’s 1888 hotel in Darling Harbour because when it opened it targeted social media-loving Millennials by offering a free night to those with over 10,000 Instagram followers. I loved that idea so much I use it as an example in my media training for hospitality operators.
So with the opportunity to check out their newest hotel, the Ovolo Woolloomooloo on Finger Wharf (or Woolloomooloo Wharf), the longest timber-piled wharf in the world, I couldn’t wait to check it out. This hotel has had a few incarnations. Your taxi driver will remember it as Blue and frequent Sydney travellers will have stayed when it was W.
It takes 30 seconds to create a first impression and when you arrive at a hotel that knows that, you are wowed.
I was wowed when I stepped out of my taxi on the wharf that stretches forever with restaurants jostling table to pepper mill wedged underneath the hotel. It’s a grand old building, originally a warehouse for exporting wool and now heritage listed, many of it’s original features remain. The entire first floor is open plan. It’s hard to tell how big this space is, but at least a football field would fit in here! I just LOVE what design company HASSELL has done with this wind tunnel, turning it into smaller spaces with pavilions, bars, games areas, a library, a cafe, a bar and on it goes.
A free happy hour is available for guests each evening, free Wifi is the norm in every room along with Apple TVs and a help yourself free mini bar that includes beer and wine. Ironically it’s the water that is drunk most! Despite its size, this is actually just a 100-room boutique hotel. The back end of this grand old building is fancy apartments with Russell Crowe dossing in one. Each room is uniquely designed, funky and little quirky design touches are everywhere while retaining the huge steel beams across the ceilings.
Woolloomooloo (I still love writing that!) is cool little spot to stay in Sydney. It’s about a 20-minute stroll through the Botanic Gardens, or around them to walk along the waterfront, to the Opera House. But right under the hotel is a strip of great restaurants starting with Indian and running through the menus of Italian, Seafood, Steak and goodness knows what else!
Across the road from the Ovolo is a lovely wine bar and bistro, The Tilbury Hotel. Go upstairs and have a cocktail on their rooftop under a sun umbrella or if you need to watch a sports match, head into Friscos – but you may need to take your own spray and wipe!
I stayed as a guest of the Ovolo Hotel, but my views are entirely my own!