The brand’s first Australian property occupies a century-old structure once used as government offices.
With six ultra-luxe locations from Ubud to Shanghai already under its belt, Capella Hotels and Resorts has now made a dramatic entrance Down Under. Sydney-bound travelers can check in at the former Department of Education building, designed in the early 1900s by the prolific Scottish-born architect George McRae, who was also responsible for local landmarks like the Queen Victoria Building. The original Edwardian Baroque elements of the structure, including its sandstone facade, have been sensitively restored by Make Architects and Singapore-based developer Pontiac Land, and the fresh, new-look interiors are sure to impress. Capella Sydney opened mere days ago after a seven-year revamp.
A short stroll from the Sydney Opera House, Harbour Bridge, and a brand-new retail and dining precinct called Quay Quarter Lanes, the luxury hotel includes 192 guestrooms and suites spread across nine floors. A trio of food and beverage outlets are located at street level: Aperture takes up the original courtyard of the building, Brasserie 1930 dishes up a modern Australian take on French classics, and McRae Bar serves elegant cocktails. These publicly accessible spaces come decorated with antiques and a trove of commissioned and collected artworks; Australian artists such as artists Judy Watson and Otis Hope Carey are represented, along with Dutch duo DRIFT. The latter created a large kinetic lighting installation titled Meadow in Aperture.
Upstairs, guest rooms and suites feature standalone bathtubs, custom Italian Frette linen, and sustainable amenities by British skincare brand Haeckels. Entry-level accommodations measure in at 46 square meters, while the uppermost category is the 235-square-meter Capella suite on the ninth floor.
Wellness treatments await at the sixth-floor Auriga Spa, and travelers can take a dip in the 20-meter heated indoor pool on the same floor. At the guests-only Living Room, a staple at all Capella properties, dedicated Capella Culturists take care of the finer details of each stay, provide insider intel, and arrange immersive guest experiences. One such offering is a two-hour walking tour to the laneways of The Rocks, delving into the history and culture of Sydney and the fascinating characters that shaped the city.
This excursion can be enjoyed as part of the Capella History Journey package, valid for stays until June 30, 2023. Also included is overnight accommodation in a deluxe guest room for two, priced at A$1,500 (about US$1,004), as well as daily breakfast in Brasserie 1930, an-on arrival welcome amenity, and valet parking for one car.