The Sheraton brand hasn't traditionally been associated with adjectives like chic and luxury, but if my recent stay at the Sheraton Grand Sydney Hyde Park is any indication, that could soon change.
The hotel is one of the first properties in the Sheraton portfolio to undergo a renovation to reflect the brand's new focus on community, coworking and shared experiences.
Ahead of its 25th anniversary this year, the hotel ended 2018 with the completion of a $50 million overhaul of its 558 guestrooms and the Sheraton Club Lounge. The sleek, black lobby faces iconic Hyde Park and is bordered on one end by reception and on the other by the Gallery Tea Lounge, a gathering space for locals and guests to work or simply relax and have a bite.
A renovated guestroom with a park view at the Sheraton Grand Sydney Hyde Park.
The rooms have been revamped to reflect a refined and residential vibe, with modern, calming colors accented by dark-stained oak and stitched leather. Tech-savvy visitors will appreciate the ample supply of USB chargers throughout the rooms.
Though the hotel is set in the central business district and is very much primed for business travelers, it's within walking distance of many of Sydney's top attractions, such as the Opera House, the Harbour Bridge, Circular Quay and the Botanical Gardens, making it a solid and sophisticated option for leisure travelers.
The food and beverage options were also reimagined with the concept of community in mind. The Conservatory Bar has a three-story-high atrium overlooking Hyde Park. The open-floor bar area is furnished with high-top tables, couches and a long, communal table to encourage socialization. The bar area also serves an impressive variety of food, from elaborate seafood and oyster towers to dumplings, local meats and cheeses, salmon croquettes and more.
Other hotel amenities include a rooftop day spa with a pool under a glass ceiling and eight treatment rooms that overlook the park or St. Mary's Cathedral.
As part of Sheraton's strategy, the Hyde Park property is encouraging guests to engage with the community through events such as its Go Local farmers markets, which bring more than 100 suppliers from the region. Two were held in 2018, which brought 1,500 people to sample baked goods, wine and charcuterie.
Sheraton's initial revamp includes hotels in Seattle; Saint-Hyacinthe, Quebec; Santos, Brazil; Bangalore, India; Beijing; and Cairo. The rest of the hotels are working to incorporate the design strategies into renovations and newbuilds, and the hope is that all will be up to speed in the next four years, according to Sheraton.
Rates at the Sheraton Grand Sydney Hyde Park begin at $150.