Martinis Down Under–Park Hyatt Sydney Part I


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As I have posted before, I contend the Park Hyatt Sydney is the best hotel in the Hyatt portfolio of properties worldwide. One of the strongest reasons I believe this is true is because even the lowest category rooms at the Park Hyatt Sydney offer a truly aspirational stay.  In this review, I will cover the hotel itself and a two night stay in the lowest category room.  In part 9 of the trip review, I return for three nights and stay in the highest category room available as a complimentary upgrade.

  1. Introduction and Trip Planning
  2. LAX Oneworld First Class Lounge
  3. Qantas A380 LAX to SYD Economy
  4. Park Hyatt Sydney Part I
  5. Sydney Qantas Business Lounge
  6. Sheraton Mirage Port Douglas
  7. Exploring the Great Barrier Reef
  8. Cairns Qantas Club Lounge
  9. Park Hyatt Sydney Part II
  10. Exploring Sydney
  11. Sydney Qantas International First Class Lounge
  12. Qantas 747 SYD to LAX Economy

 

After a long ride on the A380 from LAX, we grabbed our bags, cleared immigration and customs and headed for the Airport Link train that takes you close to the Park Hyatt Sydney.  The fee seems a little high at 16 USD per person for a  train ride of no more than 20 minutes but it appears they add an extra surcharge for the airport stations.  Because we were carrying along some SCUBA supplies, we were traveling with three roll-aboards along with two backpacks.  The Sydney train does not originate at the airport station so during rush hour there are already commuters riding the train into downtown. We were fortunate to be able to takeover two benches with our stuff but felt a little guilty doing so.  There is no overhead storage on the train so I would add my caution about taking the train depending on your situation.  A cab may be a more travel-friendly route without being too much more expensive.

Upon arrival at the Circular Quay station, we immediately saw two of Sydney’s most iconic structures in the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge.  We knew the hotel was close.  The excitement continued to build on approach because you can literally see how amazing the location of this hotel is. 

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The location

I will relay a paragraph from a previous post where I describe what really struck me about the location of this property.

“The Park Hyatt Sydney has the most exclusive location I have seen for any Hyatt hotel. While most Park Hyatt hotels are on the best streets, beachfront properties, or overwater lagoons in their respective locations, you can generally find a similar high end hotel with a comparative location.  The Park Hyatt Sydney is different in that respect.  Take a look at the location.  This hotel has an unobstructed eye-level view of the Sydney Opera House.  There are no other hotels in the vicinity with a similar view.  You can stay at some of the high end properties in the skyline overlooking the Opera House like the Four Seasons or Shangri-La but these simply do not match the signature view from the Park Hyatt.”

After a short 15 minute walk with our luggage we arrived at the entrance of the hotel.

Check in

In typical Park Hyatt fashion, the bellman were well dressed and polite.  As they saw us approaching, they hurried over to gather our bags for delivery to the hotel room.

A large automatic sliding glass door opened and we were inside. The lobby of the Park Hyatt Sydney is just beautiful.  Marble, mirrors and hardwood dominate the design along with a strong scent of fresh flowers.  This place just oozes with class.  The lobby is relatively narrow and compact which ensure the staff will greet you each time you enter or exit the hotel.  By the time we checked out, we felt like the whole staff knew us by name.

The bellman escorted us to the front desk where we were graciously greeted.  At this point it was 8AM, several hours before check in time.  I was fully prepared to dump our bags in storage and go explore Sydney but the front desk associates insisted on trying to find us a room immediately for this two night stay. They found us a City Harbour King and we were quickly on our way up to the room.  The check in process was very professional with a thorough explanation of the property and Diamond Benefits including the breakfast.  I inquired about the possibility of having breakfast immediately given how hungry we were and they said they would discuss with a manager and call the room.

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We turned left and headed up the elevators to our floor where we walked through well-kept hallways with artwork displayed every few steps before finally arriving at our room.  Within three minutes entering our room, our bags were delivered along with a call from the same front desk associate letting us know they would grant us complimentary breakfast this morning though did point out this was an exception to their policy.  Great start!

The service at the Park Hyatt Sydney is outstanding.  It is on par with the better Park Hyatt’s of the world reminding me most closely to the Park Hyatt Tokyo. The staff is polite, warm and anticipates the needs of its guest.  In a future post, I will discuss a few EXTRAORDINARY acts the staff performed to make this hotel stand out above the rest.IMG_3698

The room

The City Harbour King room was around 450-500 square feet and was full of sunlight.  While compact, the design is superb and every piece of furniture or decoration is top notch.  Like most Park Hyatt’s, there was a strong focus on clean lines, traditional yet modern color schemes and artwork throughout the room.

There was a small sitting chair near the window along with a large working table with two chairs.

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The technology in the room was impressive with a Bose music dock, the newer LED TV models and automated light and curtain switches.

The bed was as comfy as can be.  The phrase that always comes to mind at these Park Hyatt’s is “sleeping on a cloud.”

The view from the balcony

Every room at the Park Hyatt Sydney has a private with incredible views.  A sliding glass door opens onto a comfortably-sized balcony with two outdoor chairs.  Looking at the layout of the hotel, this is probably one of the worst locations for a room on this property. Yes, THIS IS ONE OF THE WORST! Rough place.

The views are just spectacular.  From our room we had to turn our heads a little to see the Opera House but the city skyline view was unobstructed.  We spent hours sipping wine and watching the ships come in and out of the harbor, the colors change as clouds passed over the opera house, and the city illuminate at night.

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If you like these views, just wait to see the Opera Deluxe Room views in part 9 of this trip report.

The bathroom

The Park Hyatt Sydney uses the optionally open bathroom concept.  A sliding door can close off the bathroom from the bedroom but I personally prefer leaving the door open since every room has such an amazing view and it makes my morning shower that much more enjoyable.

The tub and shower are integrated in this category room, though separated in larger rooms.  Pricey Le Labo bath products (Bergamote 22 ) and bath salts are distributed for both the shower and the tub meaning you have two sets available per night.  This is especially nice for taking a few home with you to remember the stay.

Two more things I loved about this design were a large wooden sitting bench next to the dual sinks when getting ready in the morning and the abundance of large mirrors throughout.

Overall this was probably one of the most high-quality and memorable bathroom setups of any hotel I have experienced.

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The toilet was located in the back of the room away from the balcony via a separate door.

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As if this hotel hadn’t WOW’ed me enough already at this point, sure enough they have installed Japanese Toilets in every room!  What a pleasant surprise in Australia.  IMG_2613

Room amenities

The room featured a well-stocked minibar with expensive treats that we passed on.  As a slow-riser in the morning, I love that they have included a high-end espresso machine in every room and keep it stocked with high-quality coffees.  There is also a mini refrigerator that had some space for our beers.

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When we returned after the first evening out and about, a bottle of Rolf Binder wine was waiting in our room along with a note from the GM.  On all other days, a fruit plate was left each day.

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Rooftop pool

It was a little chilly in Sydney during our stay since it was Winter but we checked out the rooftop pool nonetheless.  The pool was on the small side but the deck was beautiful and the location means you can see lots of the Harbour along with the Opera House and the Harbour Bridge from all sides of the deck.  There was also a small hot tub and private cabanas.

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The gym

We popped our head into the gym to check out it.  It was empty as I assume it always is.  Machines were new and all in excellent condition.  We grabbed a few bottles of water and quickly retreated.

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Diamond breakfast

I wrote previously how amazing the Diamond Breakfast is at the Park Hyatt Sydney so I will borrow some of the review from that post.  In total, we experienced the Diamond Breakfast 6 times (I am still trying to work off the pounds).

As a Diamond GP member the staff informed us we had and I quote, “free reign” over the menu.  Between the two of us, we tried every a la carte Breakfast menu item.  Every single one was phenomenal but our favorites were the egg white omelet with smoked leg ham, vintage cheddar, mushrooms and spinach and the Belgian waffles.  In addition the lattes are one of the best I have had anywhere in the world and they also will freshly-squeeze Orange Juice for you which literally tastes like you are eating an orange.

Along with the a la carte menu, there were four tables set up for the continental breakfast buffet along with a refrigerated section of pre-made fruit and salmon dishes. We actually hadn’t noticed the refrigerated section was available until our 4th breakfast.

I do want to point out one negative in regards to the Breakfast even though the benefit is so unbelievably generous.  Despite only 5 or 6 tables being in the restaurant each morning, we had missed drink orders on 5 out of the 6 mornings which seems inappropriate for a breakfast costing over 100 USD for two people.  In the end we always got what we wanted but without fail when we ordered two lattes and two freshly-squeezed orange juices (our same order 6 visits in a row), we would only get one of the two and need to ask again.

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The bottom line

I have stayed at several Park Hyatt properties including Tokyo, Washington, Chicago, Beaver Creek, Aviara and now my new favorite, the Park Hyatt Sydney.  For comparison, I tapped into the knowledge base of the PMM inner circle to gain some first hand knowledge from those who have stayed in suites at the ‘usual suspects’ like Park Hyatt Paris, Park Hyatt Milan, and Park Hyatt Maldives.  While there is no question all rank among the finest hotels in the world, I argue the other ‘usual suspects’ have comparable hotels in their respective locations while the Park Hyatt Sydney does not.

As a Diamond member, you will not be upgraded to a suite, and that is OK.  Every room is fantastic!  I feel better recommending a hotel where guests don’t need to play the upgrade lottery to have an aspirational stay.  Each room has a private balcony overlooking the Sydney Harbor, most of which have a full or partial view of the Sydney Opera House.  The other rooms have a full Sydney skyline view or the Sydney Harbor Bridge.

When it comes to recommending friends, family and readers an aspirational property to best use their points, the Park Hyatt Sydney is my #1.

Editorial Note: Opinions, analyses, reviews or suggestions expressed on this site are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer. This post was accurate at the time of posting, offer may be unavailable on this site at a later time. For details on current offers visit the card issuer’s site.

About alex

Alex loves to travel and does so a lot. Logging 100,000 flight miles each year over the past 4 years, Alex uses points and miles to power his passion. Alex is continuously striving to experience the far reaches of the globe. In his day job, Alex is a Management Consultant frequently on the road advising Technology organizations. I love thinking about, reading about, and talking about all things travel. Feel free to reach me at pmmalex@gmail.com

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Comments

  1. Park Hyatt Beijing is my favorite hotel in the world. Based on these pictures, I’d say Beijing has it beat. You check in on the 66th floor and the rooms are massive.

    Park Hyatt Milan is completely overrated; I was not impressed at all.

  2. great read. its always a mystery to me, would you share how you would tip at a facility like this one? to bellman, waiters, cleaning crew etc…

  3. Great Review- I can’t believe that is one of the ‘inferior’ views. Small correction – the bath products are Le Labo – Bergamonte 22 is actually the scent/recipie. Quite amazing products though!

  4. @DJ – Tipping is not very common in Australia and on occasion can be perceived as rude. That being said, this is a Western hotel in a touristy area so I felt comfortable tipping small bills that I had on me for extra services like taking our bags up to the room. Admittedly it is tough for me to get out of the 15-20% tipping culture of the services industry in the US.

    @Jpb1024 – Thanks for the catch. They sure are great products. Have you seen the prices they charge online for these products?! Crazy.

  5. @David – Yes. The waiter specifically checked when I asked what was included in a Diamond breakfast and told me I could order whatever I wanted off the menu in addition to the buffet. “Free reign over the menu” was the exact quote. There are actually a few items on the back of the menu that I didn’t notice until later such as breakfast smoothies and different types of fine coffees and teas.

  6. You said Diamonds can’t upgrade to a suite, but do you know anything about using the two nights in a suite from the Hyatt Visa?i applied for the card when I was a Diamond but now am not.

  7. @Benny – You can use your two suite nights for a standard room at the Park Hyatt Sydney but not a suite. Suites at this property are specifically excluded from the Suite Night Awards as well as the Confirmed Suite Upgrades on paid stays.

  8. Just a little under 3 days until I get to experience this hotel firsthand. Can. Not. Wait. We’re booked into an Opera Deluxe Room using the free nights from the Chase Hyatt card. Incredible value. Also glad to hear how well Diamonds are treated with respect to the breakfast amenity.

  9. Where is the rest of the trip report?!? I’m staying at the Sydney Hyatt in March before taking a cruise up north visiting some of the same places you did, and can’t wait to see/hear/read about the rest of your experience!! I’m stoked every time I reread this post!

  10. Not all rooms have balconies. We had a gorgeous, huge room on the exclusive 4th floor. We overlooked the harbor bridge. We were using Hyatt Chase 2 free nights and were diamond. At first we were disappointed but we really loved it. The hotel is phenomenal.

  11. Private balcony is not equipped in every room in Park Hyatt Sydney. The room that I stayed (using Gold passport points) has no balcony at all. In my opinion, Park Hyatt Melbourne is superior in terms of service and the availability of Club Lounge service.

  12. I am planning on staying in this hotel next year Feb 2015. Is there a Club lounge for Diamonds offering oerderves? I assume the breakfast is free for Diamonds, right? Thanks

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