A cute and moody staycation
I’ll use the word weirdo in an affectionate way when describing the QT Hotel in Sydney. It’s dark, mysterious and all together a bit funky, but it also delivers quirkiness, buckets of modern charm and features that make you smile.
At the risk of using a sentence that sounds like I’m also their website copywriter, your QT experience begins before you even check-in with the highly-publicised, well-dressed and wigged-out door staff who greet you and immediately set the tone of the stay. The hotel is sandwiched between the historic State Theatre and the newly-opened Topshop/Topman retail mecca which might just explain the mix of fashionable fruitiness that the hotel offers. In the lifts (also well-publicised), hidden Kinnect sensors scan how many of you are travelling with a relevant song played during your lift ride up (I experienced All By Myself and Just The Two Of Us, the former which was both hilarious and depressing).
The interior of the hotel is dark, very dark, almost a bit too dark, but it’s all about the mood. Front desk staff are friendly and efficient and I get to go to my room earlier than expected. The hotel has been created in the former Gowings building, a staple of Australian fashion retail from a bygone era, which is echoed through the hallways featuring mannequins and art installations.
My room is ultra modern – sort of a mix between what I imagine a high-class bordello would look like in Blade Runner times. The devil is in the detail here, with vintage glassware, fur rugs, a mini-bar that echoes The Standard Hotel with emergency bow-ties, games, a Nespresso machine and a cocktail making kit complete with recipe. The TV is laid out in a voyeuristic manner and features free FREE! movies on demand which is definitely a popular feature for a staycation. The bathroom, with slate grey and bright lighting, is luxurious and large and features my favourite hotel toiletries Malin + Goetz.
But the true star in the room is the QT Bed – it is unlike any other bed I’ve ever experienced – and truly is the only hotel bed that I have spent hours trying to work out how to fit in my suitcase. It turns out I needn’t worry about trying to dissect the dream mattress, because you can buy it online, I’m informed by front desk. Still can’t help but try.
Room service options although a bit limited are delicious (I ate mushroom risotto arranccini and fries with three THREE! dipping sauces served in oh-so-hipster apothecary jars which I also wish I could secretly smuggle out. I ventured out for dinner in the hotel’s own Gowings Bar & Grill which is an exceptional hotel restaurant and makes you feel as if you’re almost eating in New York.
The QT Sydney remains one of the best hotels I’ve stayed at in Sydney – and one that I’ll continue to come back to whenever I’m in the mood for a bit of a staycation. That’s the hipster word for vacationing in your own city, by the way.