Unleash your best hashtags at 1888 Hotel, a boutique bolthole that also happens to be the world’s first ‘Instagram hotel’. Decked out with visually-inspiring designs – think period windows, original Ironbark beams and bright pops of colour courtesy of works by Australian artists – and a heritage woolstore façade, this photogenic city break has no bad angles.
Style: Industrial revelation
Setting: A dawdle from Darling Harbour
Why this week? With exposed brick walls and airy lofts, 1888 Hotel offers a cool escape from the steadily rising Sydney temperatures. Crisp early mornings may be spent exploring the sights (and smells) of Sydney Fish Market or moseying through the lush Botanic Gardens overlooking the Opera House and Harbour Bridge. Dedicated retail therapists can work through the bustling CBD, which boasts brands such as Mimco and Sass & Bide, or seek out Paddington for chic eateries, hipster-approved bars, arthouse cinemas and the best of fashion boutiques. Smith members can take advantage of a special offer: the 1888 Picture-Perfect Package, which includes two glasses of wine and an antipasto plate, breakfast and free WiFi.
Our favourite bits… Feast on 1888 Hotel’s delicious Continental breakfast spread, served in 1888 Eatery & Bar, by piling a plate high with banana bread, just-baked pastries, muesli, cold cuts and cheeses. If you prefer something hot to start your day, the friendly chefs whip up a mean omelette. Extra calories can be burnt at the neighbouring Ian Thorpe Aquatic Centre – pick up your free pass at reception before diving in for some laps in the Olympic-sized swimming pool – or follow the Pyrmont Insta-Walk for a snap-happy stroll: a 45-minute route around the hotel and Darling Harbour, designed to add fodder to every Instagram feed.
Mr & Mrs Smith say…. ‘The hotel has a history that it’s clearly proud of: the name references its 1888 birthday, and the building has been undressed to reveal its past: repurposed wooden beams made into tables and chairs, for example, lofty period windows letting in lashings of light and exposed brick walls left as a feature in the unfussy rooms. But it’s clearly got a future to be excited about, too, thanks to the beautiful young staff. We fell in love with every single one of them when we visited. They’re smiley, proud of their hotel and effortlessly helpful: fishing fallen room keys out of the lift shaft, rushing off to flag down taxis and volunteering the area’s best bits unasked for. 1888 Hotel: we salute you.’ Read more about 1888 Hotel in Sydney.
* Copy compiled by Stephanie Mikkelsen