Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour has opened its doors, making it the first new-build, international luxury hotel to open in Sydney's CBD this millennium. Centrally located opposite the International Convention Centre, the $500M Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour will play a major role in the ongoing revitalisation of the vibrant Darling Harbour precinct. It also heralds the renaissance of new hotel development in Sydney, with over 40 hotels scheduled to open in the next five years to support the city's tourism growth.
"Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour will be the first new-build 5-star hotel the city has seen in more than 15-years and it is going to be a flagship property not only for AccorHotels but for the Australian hotel industry," said Simon McGrath, Chief Operating Officer of AccorHotels Pacific.
The hotel will offer 590 stylish guestrooms including 35 coveted suites, boasting some of the best views in Sydney. All the hotel's guest rooms feature the Sofitel MyBed™ and floor-to-ceiling windows with views of Darling Harbour and the city. The suites feature an in-bathroom television, double shower heads and luxurious soaking tubs for the ultimate pampering experience.
The Bellerive suite is the hotel's pinnacle of accommodation and features a separate living room, dining room and butler's pantry.
Exclusive to guests staying in the Club Sofitel rooms and suites on levels 28 – 34, the Club Millesime Lounge, located at the very top of the hotel on level 35 will offer breathtaking views over Darling Harbour and the city. Offering a refined environment, Club Millesime Lounge will present an array of personalised services. These include private check-in, use of the meeting room for more intimate gatherings and access to other special privileges.
The hotel was designed by renowned multi award-winning Sydney architect Richard Francis-Jones from Francis-Jones Morehen Thorp architects. Dreamtime Australia Design and the A+ Design Group all collaborated to create this visually inspiring property which was built by Lend Lease.
On arrival, guests will be greeted by the hotel's imposing 35-storey glass exterior featuring triangular accents representing sails and a striking red ochre and blue exterior colour palette which pays tribute to the indigenous clans of the Eora nation who lived around Tumbalong – the name given to Darling Harbour.
A stylish porte-cochere leads guests inside the building. The hotel's public spaces and guestrooms continue to pay tribute to the maritime location and the industries that formerly occupied the site including extensive use of timber representing Sydney's strong wharf heritage through to the rope and sandstone motifs in the carpets.
While recognising the links to the location's history, the hotel's cutting-edge design places it squarely at the centre of Darling Harbour's future. Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour will meet sustainability targets as part of a transformed tourism precinct with a 6-star green rating, as well as feature spectacular external lighting to enhance Darling Harbour at night with 6000 LED lights providing Sydney with stunning light displays.
Three sophisticated bars and the stylish signature restaurant, Atelier by Sofitel will anchor the hotel as the place in Sydney to meet for a drink or a memorable dining experience.
With its French inspired rotisserie and grill, Atelier by Sofitel on the third floor, is the hotel's restaurant, serving the very best local seasonal produce combined with the culinary techniques that highlight the origin of Sofitel's French heritage. A contemporary deconstructed bouillabaisse designed by Executive Chef, Matt Coates and his team will become a signature guest experience.
The Champagne Bar, perfect for a pre-or post-dinner drink, is the largest Champagne bar in Sydney, offering 20 different types of champagne, from the smaller champagne houses like Canard-Duchene and Pol Roger to the houses of Louis Roederer and Pommery. There also will be a special Louis Roederer Champagne from the 2009 vintage in collaboration with artist Philippe Starck, representing the mix of innovation and French heritage. Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour will also be the only hotel in Australia to acquire a special edition 3L Jeroboam of Cristal Brut valued at $22,000. The bottle is encased in 24 carat gold-dipped latticework handcrafted by two master goldsmiths over four days.
Esprit Noir lobby bar, located on the ground floor, offers an elegant space to relax and enjoy a cocktail.
Channelling the relaxed sophistication of a Mediterranean beach meets the urban energy of Sydney, Le Rivage Pool Bar on the fourth floor will become one of the city's highly sought-after outdoor spaces. It will be emblematic of the hotel's vibrancy and Darling Harbour's transformation – an idyllic place to laze the day away while sipping cocktails, swimming in the inviting 20m infinity pool or working out in the SoFit gym, while overlooking the magnificent city skyline.
With nine flexible meeting spaces, including a grand 450-person Magnifique Ballroom, Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour is also well-positioned to host any style of event, from haute couture fashion shows to gala dinners and large-scale meetings or conferences with state-of-the-art audio visual technology.
Every Sofitel around the world is culturally linked with a city or region in France that shares similar attributes in terms of culture, landscape and design. Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour is culturally linked with Marseille, the epitome of vibrant waterside sophistication. From industrial ports to sophisticated harbours, the energy of transformation which runs through Marseille and Sydney's Darling Harbour make them an appropriate pairing.
Each Sofitel hotel internationally has a number of identifying elements which they adopt to help bring the hotel to life and as the flagship property in Australia, Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour will become the new benchmark. From a signature fragrance, to evening candle lighting ceremonies, a welcome drink, to the implementation of Sofitel Wine Days - a month of celebrating French wine and art-de-vivre - Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour will become a destination in its own right.
Sofitel continues to expand its global portfolio with recent openings of Sofitel Baltimore in Paris, Sofitel Foshan, Sofitel Kuala Lumpur Damansara, Sofitel Guiyang Hunter and the latest Sofitel Singapore City Center in Asia. Sofitel Surabaya Majapahit will soon open along with several SO hotels around the world.
To celebrate, Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour is offering a Grand Opening Package which includes overnight accommodation in a Superior Darling Harbour View* room, buffet breakfast for two at Atelier by Sofitel restaurant, a Champagne degustation served at the Champagne Bar for two people, a selection of Ladurée sweets and late checkout of 3pm. The Grand Opening Package is priced from $529.
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