With Sydney’s burgeoning cruise business and larger vessels visiting more frequently, finding a hotel anywhere near the downtown Overseas Passenger Terminal (OPT) at Circular Quay is getting more difficult, regardless of price.
It’s welcome news when a new hotel open its doors to invite cruisers to overnight either pre- or post-cruise within walking distance of both your cruise ship and shopping precinct.
The Tank Stream Hotel, part of the global St Giles network, is named after one of Sydney’s first landmarks and an example of the recent trend to repurpose existing structures to create more hotel beds in a city increasingly starved of capacity. The 1960s-era 10-story office tower was boosted to 14 stories while preserving the historically significant marble facades. The result is a modern, functional, 280-room, supremely comfortable 4+ star hotel ready for business.
A mezzanine level has been created to accommodate Le Petit Flot (the little stream), a French-themed bistro style restaurant (contemporary French with a Japanese influence) which also doubles as the hotel’s breakfast venue. A ‘laneway’ wine bar is also on the ground floor. We were able to sample both breakfast and dinner at Le Petit Flot, but missed the wine bar unfortunately.
One of the hotel’s strong points, the restaurant is a delight and easily accessible via a short flight of stairs or the lift if you are coming down. The space will seat 70 and there is a private dining venue for groups.
The breakfast has all your favorites with a welcome slant toward fresh and healthy. The chef cooks omelettes on the spot and you should ask him for his special – and then you can skip lunch.
For dinner we chose from the lavish a la carte selection with some guidance from the kitchen. Let me recommend the prawns and angel hair pasta or seared salmon for starter and either the Angus steak (300g) or beef cheeks for main. Tony, the manager, will guide you with wine. Tip: Merrick’s Estate Shiraz from Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula.
The hotel itself is pretty straightforward. Parking and gym facilities are with third party partners (with fee), the lobby is compact but bright and functional, and the staff were attentive, polite and helpful at all times.
The 280 rooms are spread over 12 floors, with the top four floors being the newly built extension to the existing building. Sizes range from 15 to 25 square meters across seven categories covering twin, queen and king size. An accessible room is also available. Tip: ‘Atrium’ rooms have an internal aspect.
Bright and airy, I liked the unobtrusive decor that maximizes floor space and the beds are superb. As you’d expect, there is a big 42” walled-mounted TV with cable and free-to-air channels, Nespresso coffee pod machine (or instant), fast and free Internet (tested at 2ms ping time) and a complimentary mini-bar stocked with non-alcoholic beverages and snacks.
Huge double glazed windows ensure a silent night’s sleep and a great view.
While there is no Presidential or Honeymoon Suite, as such, the whopping (25 square meter) King Suites on the top floors come close.
As with all Sydney CBD properties, my advice is similar. Downtown Sydney can be a bit hectic for private and taxi traffic, especially during peak times. The hotel is located 850m (half a mile) from the OPT. A flat easy walk, but a bit messy with luggage.
From the airport you can catch a train [www.sydneytrains.info] (Fare: A$16.70 pp) almost to the hotel itself without changing. Wynyard station is just 200 yards, although a party arriving at off-peak times may find a single cab more convenient for little extra money. Average cab fares should be around A$40 with surcharge and a small tip in favorable traffic.
As with most CBD hotels, car parking is expensive for private or rental cars. Anywhere in the city is about A$50 for 24 hours.
At time of writing, The Tank Stream Hotel was ranked #45 of 179 hotels in Sydney with a 4.0 rating.
Location, bookings and Contact:
97 Pitt Street
Sydney NSW 2000
Tel: +61 2 8222 1200
Email: [email protected]