My family have just racked-up another visit to Sydney and another stay at the InterContinental! The hotel is a business hotel - but when I stay there it's really just for fun! And it works!
First - the location: If you were only going to be in Sydney for ONE DAY and you were never going to go back again - THIS is where you would want to stay! The hotel is one block away from Circular Quay (funny way to spell 'key' ;) Our room overlooks the Sydney Harbor Bridge, the Opera house AND the Botanical Gardens! It's pretty spectacular to have three of the City's top tourist destination RIGHT THERE! You can EASILY walk to the ferries that take you all around the City. Easily walk to the Botanical Gardens (they are just across the street!) And easily walk to the bridge! If you expand your horizons by a block or so you have access to museum(s) and libraries! Expand your wandering radius out 3 or so blocks and you are pretty much smack-dab in the middle of the downtown business community! Bars, shops, restaurants are all right there within walking distance!
Dining: The Hotel offers a two choices for your meals. Cafe Opera on the first first floor is large and traditional looking - but with a few flourishes of flair that make it a nice place to enjoy a meal with family and friends.
On the ground floor the Cortile is a bar/cafe offering comfortable seating and nice atmosphere under the building's atrium! I have to admit that most nights my family and I dine here because frankly, I like the menu! It features lovely tapas and sandwiches and food that's miles apart from most fare offered in bars/cafes I've been to! My particular favorite is the Reuben sandwich... not like a traditional New York deli style Reuben - but then again - that's not to say that I've enjoyed every Reuben I've eaten in a New York deli either!
Another note while I'm on the subject of eating and drinking: The cafe latte 'they' serve is probably the BEST I've ever had. When I say 'they' I mean pretty much anyone in the hotel! I don't think they have a dedicated barista; I've been to the hotel 3 times over the past 3 years at different times of the year(s)... at different times of the morning/noon/night and at either the Opera or Cortile and regardless EACH and every time it is perfect. I'd like to think that the baristas at my local (insert major international chain of coffee shops HERE) could do better - but the fact is they simply can't! It is THE best.
The Rooms! Once again - wherever we go we book a suite; we simply need the extra room so my daughter can nap and so that my wife and I don't have to huddle around a candle in the dark(est) corner of the room so as to not interfere with the little one's sleeping! By default then the rooms are spacious and open and have an unparalleled view of the harbor. The decor is 'slightly' business hotel in nature - but then again - folks here on business might think 'geez - this place is a little more 'deluxe' than I'd like!' too. It's tough to please everyone - but I think that the warm tones, comfortable bed and high quality furniture go a long way towards that. I know that I like it!
The Staff: This is not the first time we've stayed at this hotel - it's technically our 4th (we've been 3 times, but checked out for a few days, travelled within Australia and then checked back in again so - 4...3 or 4...) My point being - they recognize us and they treat us very, very nicely. That said - if they hadn't on the first trip we would not have come back again and again (and again). Everyone from the chaps who pick-up the bags when you pull into the entrance to the staff that check you in to the folks that work in the restaurants and even the housekeeping staff are always prompt, courteous and efficient: If you ask for a spare blanket, two amenity kits and 5 bottles of water - that's what you get - not some mixed-up version of multiple blankets, a single bottle of water and enough toothbrushes to last you a lifetime! And if they say "within 5 minutes" they mean 5 min. Not 6 or 7 or "hey we're flat-out busy right now! Get in line!" 10-15 min!
Next time we come to Sydney I can tell you where we will stay (again!)
Ask for a high-floor overlooking the harbor! You will NOT regret it!
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
February 13, 2013
Dear Mario S
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What a wonderful review, thank you. We do truly appreciate that you have shared your experience at InterContinental Sydney from location, room, food & beverage to our great staff.
Our food & beverage team are all very well trained and pleased their coffee making skills were the best you have experienced.
Thank you again and we shall look forward to welcoming you and your family once again.
With kind regards
Acting General Manager
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.