QT Sydney: Cutting Edge Design Hotel

By Rafael Ruiz Taboada

A streamline art deco sign above Sydney CBD sets the scene where dapper porters wearing stylish berets, jeans & suspenders linger on Market Street. Is this a hotel or the entrance to glam theatre of Sydney?

It has been said the staff have been casted, and all front of house sporting a bowtie-clad concierge to the red wigged “Directors of Chaos” visit hare and make up each morning before clocking in.  Uniforms are courtesy from fashion forward costume designer Janet Hine.

LED walls of digital art merge with historic Art Deco and Gothic architecture is how I would describe the QT Sydney; occupying the building of the State Theatre and the old Gowings Department store.

QT Sydney

QT Sydney

took 17 months to develop with a price tag of approximately $70 million, offering 200 guest rooms.  QT is the first Sydney member of the global Design Hotels booking service.

Entrance is via the glittering former State Theatre shopping arcade where even the lifts get in on the act, kitted out with LED digital art and smart activated that changes the music to the number of passengers on board.  Be prepared for “Are you lonesome tonight,” “Me, myself and I” or “Dancing with myself”, as you ride the elevator solo. Or the awkward second guest you never met with “Let’s get it on” or “Just the two of us”.

The lobby is scattered with bespoke furniture, dominated by a wall of vintage luggages’ and tailored mannequins.  The guest lounge is dotted with large velvet ottomans and the wall lined with artfully stuffed cabinets of curiosities (in fact the hotel shop selling all sorts of stylish objects).

Local designers Nic Graham and Shelley Indyk have teamed up to deliver a playful, stylish but took chances in creating comfortable rooms that incorporate many of the buildings original features and take into account the individually styled guest rooms.

Each design-focused guest room is decorated in rich reds, oranges, yellows and white, but all share certain devilish features: cleverly crafted items, wooden floor boards, quirky bedside lamps (in the guise of a top or bowler hats, book binders or vases), an excellent mini bar and Nespresso machine.  But before you settle into your room, mix yourself the hotel’s signature espresso Martini with the Belvedere vodka and Patrón XO Cafe tequila beckoning from your welcome tray.

The rooms are sexy; there is no doubt about it.

The king deluxe room overlooking the historic Queen Victoria Building has heritage-listed windows.

Room 1022, which is one of two state suites, is the former Union Theatre’s chairman’s office and comes with a large original fireplace and cabinet.

Under creative food director Robert Marchetti (behind North Bondi Italian Food and La Macelleria) and executive Chef Paul Easson (ex Melbourne’s Rockpool Bar & Grill), food boast bold brasserie style menue. On the ground floor the Parlour Lane Roasters café morphs into a wine bar after dark, from young up-and-coming winemakers from around the world.  Upstairs, the all-day dining Gowings Bar & Grill featuring an impressive open kitchen fitted with wood fired ovens and an impressive glass fronted seafood room where a giant yellow fin tuna (delivered weekly) hangs to be cut as needed.  Serving classic Australian ingredients for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  Don’t forget the Gilt Lounge, cocktails are served until late

Food boast bold brasserie style menue

Food boast bold brasserie style menue

Service is fantastic and the food – delicious.

The breakfast menu focuses on super foods including clay roasted granola, a series of seasonal fruit hits, Detox smoothies and poached eggs Rockefellar and a Huevos Rancheros served with free range eggs.  Dinner I choose the steak tartare pasture fed ox/beef, the crisp spiced duck with Paris mash, steamed black cabbage and salt bush.

The Barbershop – Enjoy the nostalgic trip of a soothing hot towel to prepare for a smooth traditional shave

Pampering takes place at spaQ inside the hotel, specializing in treatments for the discerning traveller.  There are six treatment rooms, a barber shop, and a Hammam-inspired steam and ice room.  The Barbershop resinates old school aesthetic, with a young shaveologist working with the retro theme setting of the 1930 tiled walls.  Enjoy the nostalgic trip of a soothing hot towel to prepare for a smooth traditional shave, leaving nothing but a clean cut shave.

QT Sydney 49 Market Street, Sydney NSW 2000, Australia 

Details, bookings: reservations_sydney@qthotels.com.au or +61 (02) 8262 0000 or www.qtsydney.com.au

spaQ at QT Sydney

Details, bookings: +61 (02) 8262 0088 or www.spa-q.com.au/sydney

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