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20 Nov 2016

Sydney: Extended Version

Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, view from Shangri-La

As our plane began its descent into one of my favourite cities in the world, we were treated to a magnificent view of the Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge. I squirmed excitedly in my seat, unable to contain myself as I grinned over at Jarv. Arriving in the evening, we had decided to spend our first night at the Shangri-La. Although we would soon move onto our favourite hotel for the rest of our stay, Jarv thought it worth checking out a different one. I'm glad we did - we were treated to the most beautiful sunrise view (see above). Yet it didn't quite hold a candle to the Park Hyatt. More on that in a minute.

This is probably going to be the longest post I've written to date - I apologise, bear with me, but hopefully there's a tip or two in here for you if Sydney is coming up in your travels anytime soon!


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PADDINGTON

A pretty, inviting neighbourhood chock full of 
independent boutiques, cafes and restaurants.
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Day one: an afternoon in Paddington. An achingly charming part of Sydney about a ten minute drive from the CBD. Have a quick peek at the Paddington Reservoir, which once provided drinking water to parts of Sydney and has since been transformed into a sunken garden. Then wander down towards the boutiques and pretty terraced houses of William street. Finish up with a coffee or lunch at any of the restaurants and cafes (all with al fresco dining) at the Five Ways intersection. 

We sat and sipped on flat whites for a half hour; birds chirping, good-natured dogs sitting dutifully by their owners, the sun warm on our skin. We then made our way towards Rushcutters Bay Park where we came across a pelican casually hanging out and fishing in the bay. It mustn't have been particularly unusual because no-one else seemed to give a damn, but to us it was a bewildering and amazing sight. I mean, I've never seen a pelican up close in 'the wild' before!

Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, Paddington Reservoir Gardens
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, Paddington
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, Rushcutters Bay Park


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PARK HYATT SYDNEY

Situated in a prime spot in The Rocks with 
unbeatable views of the Opera House.
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Still in my top 3 favourite hotels of all time. I had been looking forward to returning to the Park Hyatt for almost a year and - happily - we'd been given the Opera Deluxe Room we were hoping for. The view was even more outstanding than the last time. The room featured two terraces, a bed I dream of one day sleeping in at home, a jaw-dropping view of the Opera House and tastefully warm and grown up decor. 

Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, Park Hyatt Opera Deluxe Room
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, Park Hyatt Opera Deluxe Room
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, Park Hyatt Opera Deluxe Room
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, Park Hyatt Opera Deluxe Room
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, Park Hyatt Opera Deluxe Room
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, Park Hyatt Opera Deluxe Room
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, Park Hyatt Opera Deluxe Room

Breakfast is taken in the Dining Room every morning with yet another gorgeous view of the Opera House and a selection of buffet options as well as some fantastic a la carte dishes (try the brioche French toast with caramelised banana and whipped chocolate cream, or the grilled sourdough with avocado, ricotta,  tomato and aged balsamic...or the smoked salmon fillet with poached organic egg, asparagus and hollandaise! Hell, try it all!).

Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, Park Hyatt
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, Park Hyatt
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, Park Hyatt
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, Park Hyatt
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, Park Hyatt Opera Deluxe Room
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, Park Hyatt Opera Deluxe Room

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MR WONG

Modern Cantonese food in an 
industrial, warehouse setting.
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When we asked our concierge to call and check how busy it was looking at Mr. Wong (word on the street was that there was a queue and waiting list every single night), he hung up with a "good news, there's about a hour's wait time". That was good news. Well, we figured, let's find out if it's worth the hype. We turned up, left our names and a number with the booker at the door and headed down a lift in the back to speakeasy bar Palmer & Co. An hour and a bit later, we were called upstairs and seated.

I'll start with the cons and end on a high note - the dim sum was unimpressive at best, I've had better at any number of Chinese restaurants in London (Hakkasan being my favourite, Royal China another). The scallops, while nice, tasted mostly of the sauce, which completely overpowered their natural sweetness. On the other hand, the ham hock came in hearty, chunky cubes and tasted incredible. The crab fried rice was possibly the best fried rice I've ever eaten and the Moreton bay bugs were sensational, cooked in the lightest and crispiest of batters. Overall, it's pretty overpriced but there were a few dishes that blew me away, so all in all - a decent evening out.

Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, Mr. Wong
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, Mr. Wong


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THE BLUE MOUNTAINS

A name derived from the blue, misty hue 
that appears to linger over the range.
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We hired a car and drove the two and a half hours up to the Blue Mountains for the afternoon. Katoomba is one of the towns bordering the Blue Mountains and the one we were recommended to drive through. We stopped for coffees, made our way to Echo Point for a great view of the Three Sisters rock formation (third photo down), then climbed back in the car and drove towards Scenic World.

Scenic World is renowned for providing some of the best views and experiences in the Blue Mountains, from amazing panoramic views over the valleys to walks deep in the rainforest, past waterfalls, native birds and time-worn trees. Yes, it's touristy, but who cares? - it's fun, the sights are beautiful and it's worth a visit. My favourite part was stumbling across a Lyrebird during our walk through the ancient rainforest after taking the world's steepest passenger railway. Have you ever seen the David Attenborough clip of this incredible animal? It can imitate an incredible variety of sounds, mimicking other birds in the forest, camera shutters, car alarms, chainsaws...even crying babies and barking dogs. We watched in awe for about five minutes before it tired of entertaining us and wandered off into the surrounding shrubbery.

Euriental | luxury travel & style | The Blue Mountains, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | The Blue Mountains, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | The Three Sisters, Blue Mountains, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Scenic World, Blue Mountains, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Scenic World, Blue Mountains, Australia


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ESTER

Eclectic, modern dishes served in a slick, 
concrete-walled space with an open kitchen.
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We met up with some friends for dinner one evening at hot spot restaurant Ester in the up and coming neighbourhood of Chippendale. With its arched concrete frames, friendly waitstaff, wonderful food and a cave-like yet cosy feel to the space, it's no surprise Ester is doing so well. Expect generous portions well suited for sharing and filling yet sophisticated dishes. Roasted oysters, blood sausage, squid in ink dumplings, roast corn, goat ribs, steak, head of cauliflower with almonds and mint ... all accompanied by a bottle of orange wine from Spain. For dessert - an incredible tres leches dessert and burnt pav with elderflower and passionfruit. Take me back, please. We stayed well past closing time and the staff were kind enough to leave us to our conversation until we looked around and realised they were just about ready to go home themselves.

Euriental | luxury travel & style | Ester, Sydney, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Ester, Sydney, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Ester, Sydney, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Ester, Sydney, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Ester, Sydney, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Ester, Sydney, Australia

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MANLY

Beautiful beaches, eateries and walking trails only 
15 minute ferry ride from Sydney Harbour.
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Manly is one of my favourite day trips to make when visiting Sydney. Part of the fun is taking the ferry over from Sydney Harbour; there are two options, the 15 minute Manly fast ferry or the 30 minute one. Whichever you opt for, you'll be treated to amazing views of the Opera House, city skyline and neighbouring islands on the way over. Once there, we usually head straight for coffee (my fav is the Manly Coffee Guild) and maybe lunch. For a quick bite, try Pure Wholefoods - lots of organic, free-range, healthy options and big portions. If you're looking for some gorgeous seafood at a full service restaurant, Garfish is worth a visit. Then walk it all off for an hour or so with a stroll up to Shelly Beach and back.

Euriental | luxury travel & style | Manly Coffee Guild, Sydney, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Manly Pure Wholefoods, Sydney, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Manly, Pure Wholefoods, Sydney, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Shelly Beach, Manly, Sydney, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Manly, Sydney, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Manly, Sydney, Australia

We ended the afternoon with the slow ferry back and an hour in the rooftop hot tub at the Park Hyatt.

Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Opera House, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Opera House, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, Park Hyatt


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DINNER & THE SYMPHONY

An amazing deal on dinner thanks to 
Lime & Tonic, plus a night at the Opera House.
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Lime & Tonic is basically like Groupon - big discounts on select events, restaurants and activities around the city. Jarv took a look before we flew over and was surprised to see the Park Hyatt offering a three course dinner for a steal - perfect, we thought. We'll do that before our evening at the Opera House. The food was served impressively fast, each course bursting with colour, flavour and texture.

The Opera House is as impressive inside as out. Watching Beethoven's 2nd and 9th symphonies performed flawlessly by the Sydney Symphony Orchestra (conducted by Vladimir Ashkenazy) in one of the most recognisable and distinctive architectural marvels of the 20th century made for a special evening. If you have the time and an event that interests you is on, I would highly recommend going.

Euriental | luxury travel & style | Park Hyatt Sydney, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | dinner at Park Hyatt, Sydney, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | dinner at Park Hyatt, Sydney, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | dinner at Park Hyatt, Sydney, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | dinner at Park Hyatt, Sydney, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Park Hyatt, Sydney, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Opera House, Australia
Euriental | luxury travel & style | Sydney Australia, Park Hyatt

I'm as enamoured with this city as ever.

8 comments :

  1. I need to add this to my bucket list of places to see! That hotel looks amazing!

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    1. It's one of my all-time favourites!

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  2. wow what a great adventure you had!

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  3. Oh, I'm ALL for lengthy blog posts when they're as amazing as this, haha! The interior design of Park Hyatt Sydney is so impressive, and I think I may have paused for a good 20 seconds on the images of breakfast ;) The views from the Blue Mountains look beautiful and girl you look seriously gorgeous in the black maxi!

    Gabrielle | A Glass Of Ice x

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    Replies
    1. Hah, thanks Gabrielle! I love the rooms there, especially the view (obviously). It's how I would decorate my ideal apartment. Thanks as always for your lovely words! X

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  4. All these places looks so nice! Thanks for sharing!

    http://violettedaily.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for checking it out, Violette!

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