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AlanJ-help?

Orlando, Florida
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410 posts
10 reviews
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AlanJ-help?

Wondering if you could provide me with some thoughts here. We're currently booked at the Lord Nelson in Sydney for one night in November (the rest of our visit is booked at the Marriott Harbour using hotel points). We decided on it because it was cheap and also, we thought we'd hang out in the Rocks and end the evening in the pub downstairs before climbing up to bed. I've been reading your rercommendations for the Old Holiday Inn in the Rocks and considering changing Lord Nelson to Holiday Inn. The only thing stopping me is the price. For that night, we'll have 3 adults in one room--Lord Nelson's charging us A$235 for 3 beds with private bathroom but the Holiday Inn for 3 adults is A$285. I suppose my question is whether the location is worth the extra bucks. Where exactly is it on George? Also, do you think that wotif will list something decent in that price range in the Rocks for Nov.8?

Thanks so much for your expert opinion!

Sydney
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1. Re: AlanJ-help?

If I were you, I'd leave things exactly as they are. Sure, the Holiday Inn is in a dream of a location, more central than the Lord Nelson Brewery, but we're only talking about a five minute walk here. And the location of the Lord nelson Brewery Hotel, while not as central as the Holiday Inn, has other things going for it: it's very quiet, it's in an area that hasn't been tarted up for the tourists, it's opposite the park leading up to the Observatory, and it's very close to one of the most historic churches in Sydney. The area around the Lord Nelson Brewery really hasn't changed much since I first saw it sixty years ago, and probably not all that much since sixty years before that. It's one of Sydney's few remaining gems.

The Holiday Inn is virtually opposite the tourist information centre; if you can find a map of Sydney, you can locate it exactly by looking at the tiny strip between George St and Playfair Street. It's less than five minutes' walk to the ferry wharves, whereas with the Lord Nelson Brewery, you'd be talking about eight or nine minutes.

But the main reason I think you should stay with the Lord Nelson Brewery is because of your other hotel, the Marriott Harbourside. Being a large US chain, this hotel is virtually the same as the Holiday Inn or any of the other chains (Four Seasons, Hyatt) around the area. The Lord Nelson Brewery, however, is a totally-different experience; only two storeys high, it's the oldest (it says) hotel in Sydney, and to walk in the door is like stepping back in time 160 years. To walk in the door of the Holiday Inn, as nice as the location is, is exactly like -- to an American, anyway -- being back home.

Early November is a great time of year to come, but it isn't the height of the season -- prices really go up when you start to include New Year's Eve in your plans -- so I should imagine that wotif will have its usual round of specials; however, I really can't answer that question with any authority, as I check the site only sporadically, and I should imagine that the prices advertised would reflect last-minute needs of individual hotels, and would, therefore, be hard to predict. I always think the best bargain -- and it seems to occur often -- on wotif is the Russell, which is even better-located than the Holday Inn AND about as old as the Lord Nelson Brewery! However, it's not air-conditioned, so this might just be an issue in November (on second thoughts, though, I think probably not, in your case, as, coming from Miami, you wouldn;t find anything remarkable in Sydney's summer climate).

Hope this is of some help. Have a wonderful holiday!

Orlando, Florida
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410 posts
10 reviews
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2. Re: AlanJ-help?

AlanJ-- thanks so much for your thoughts! I think that you are right about staying with the Lord Nelson. We've been to Sydney before but never stayed at either hotel (Inter-Continental with hotel points last stay). Since we're staying at yet another "chain" (but then again, it is FREE!), we really look forward to staying somewhere with a litte character. We've actually been to the Lord Nelson before but just so my husband could try the beer! We're sticking with the Lord Nelson. Final answer. Thanks again for your thoughts!