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The familiar real estate mantra “location, location, location” popped into my head repeatedly during a recent stay at Pier One Sydney Harbour in Australia.
Less than a five-minute walk from Sydney’s legendary Harbour Bridge, the chic luxury boutique hotel is housed in a former shipping wharf and passenger terminal building that dates back to the early 1900s. The location — fronting Walsh Bay in the city’s historic The Rocks district — offers guests easy walking access to Sydney Opera House and a range of attractions in Circular Quay harbor.
With 189 guestrooms, including a collection of high-end waterfront suites, Pier One provides travelers with all sorts of high-tech convenience wrapped in contemporary, elegant design and truly stunning views of Walsh Bay and all its nautical activity from the property’s waterside accommodations.
Activities and AttractionsPerhaps more importantly, the hotel is a terrific launching point for walking tours of Sydney’s Harbour District. I took full advantage of that during my recent visit, heading out after dark to people watch on Circular Quay harbor and snap far too many blurry photos of Harbour Bridge and Sydney Opera House, glowing under the twinkling city lights.
Travelers looking for a bustling cocktail venue should head over to Opera Bar, an open-air space along the water at Sydney Opera House that was crowded with revelers late into the evening the night of my visit. You can also enjoy a good meal at a few different restaurants right near the iconic building, including The House Eatery by George, where diners can choose a light option with a quick drink or go all out with a full multi-course meal.
If you are keen to snap a photo of the iconic Sydney Harbour, you might want to call it a night early in the evening and set an early wake-up call so you can head over to the Royal Botanic Garden Sydney and the Domain, a pretty stroll just east of Sydney Opera House. The lovely park setting offers a range of elevated viewpoints looking back over the waterfront toward Sydney Harbour Bridge and Opera House, both illuminated with gorgeous sunrise lighting on clear mornings.
Guests staying at the Pier One hotel on a Saturday should be sure to check out the weekly open-air markets in The Rocks district. They run on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to around 5 p.m. and feature everything from street food to handcrafted jewelry, works by local artists and hip Sydney fashion.
Art lovers definitely won’t want to miss out on a visit to Museum of Contemporary Art Australia, which is loaded with terrific works, doesn’t charge an entry fee and is just a short walk from the Pier One hotel.
Pier One Sydney Harbourwww.pieronesydney.com.au
Sydney Opera Housewww.sydneyoperahouse.com
The Museum of Contemporary Art Australiawww.mca.com.au