Suite life: QT

QT Corner Suite

Size: 58 square metres

Price: A$495 per night




Think about everything you would expect from a five star hotel and then forget it all. Start over again. That’s what the creators of QT Sydney did when they imagined the 200-room hotel they would build in the old Gowings Department Store and State Theatre buildings on Market Street in the centre of Sydney. In the style department, the hotel that was eventually unveiled towards the end of last year corners the market on unique and quirky but doesn’t disappoint on service as its enthusiastic, youngish staff seem genuinely excited to be part of it all. If there isn’t a part of you that delights at the adventures of the human imagination, this hotel experience will be entirely lost on you.


The list is almost endless. The lift detects how many occupants it has and plays lyrics that acknowledge the number. Sometimes it sighs with regret when you leave. Theatrical touches proliferate throughout the public spaces (and into the rooms) like the plaster cast hands that hold up your room number at the door. The head of the costumed concierge staff carries the title Director of Chaos. The staff was not so much hired as cast for their roles on the basis of their personalities, apparently. Your room service order might be delivered in a Bento Box even if it isn’t Japanese and god forbid, the minibar is stocked with healthy snack food choices!


There isn’t a buffet in sight at this hotel. Even the delicious and inventive breakfast is table service in the all-day-dining Gowings Bar and Grill, which in the evenings ramps up to become a swank, sophisticated and exciting eatery with an open kitchen, wood-fired ovens and a spectacular glass-fronted seafood room where a rather large yellow fin tuna hangs to be sliced as required. True to form for this establishment, the restaurant’s “creative director” manages to think up unusual food combinations for the extensive brasserie-style menu that are delicious and sensational and he really goes to town on the desserts. Other on-site drinking and dining venues are the Parlour Lane Roasters café on the ground floor that becomes a bar at night and Guilt Lounge is a cool and quirky cocktail bar.


Qspa is as kooky as the rest of the joint in its theatrical design flourishes and humorous references but the massage I had was among the best ever. It seems the management knows how to be serious when it’s important. In the barber shop, for bragging rights I suppose, gents can have an old-time hot shave with a cut-throat razor like in the westerns.


Original art works throughout and large LED screens display digital art.


Bathrooms definitely need better lighting and there were a couple of hitches with the TV that required the attendance of maintenance to the room.


The QT State Suite has all the same features as the Corner Suite, (king-size bed, high-speed internet, large bathroom with bath and walk in shower, flatscreen high definition TV, desk and chair) but more space at 70 square metres. It is A$2,070 per night.


Ask for a room with a view when booking otherwise you might end up looking into the offices across the road.

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