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“OK but not for the money”
Review of The Russell Hotel

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The Russell Hotel
Ranked #38 of 178 Hotels in Sydney
Certificate of Excellence
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
81 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
“OK but not for the money”
Reviewed 25 August 2014

Location, location, location is certainly a attraction for this old hotel but in my opinion you can pay a bit more within a 10 minute walk and get much better value. This old hotel is exactly that in many ways. A beautiful old historical building although most of the charm has been covered over. Old is the state of the fitout. There are some restrictions when you try to make use of an historical building but things like, beds, bedding, fitments etc can be updated to provide the traveller with a pleasant experience. Even something as basic these days as a TV. The one in our room was the size of a small computer screen and was just sitting on the small table. When sitting on the bed (only 1 single lounge) it was difficult to see the screen across the room. A large TV on the wall is one of the small investments ha would help to make an improvement on the age of the environment. I feel it has been a long time since someone spent decent money on this hotel and they are continuing to live off their only real benefit, location. If the cost was around the $150.00 per night you might feel like you got an ok deal. At the $355.00 we paid for an en-suite room I felt we were over charged. Apart from what is mentioned above there was not really anything particularly wrong, the staff were pleasant, the room was clean, breakfast next day was OK but we go to these type of places only as a treat so it's disappointing when they don't meet expectations. If we were to go to Sydney (our home town) for another night in the city I'd pay the extra to stay in much better accommodation.

Room Tip: Check to make sure you have the facilities you want. Not all rooms have an on-suite and they don'...
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank djbjt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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903 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (278)
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Emory, Texas
Level Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 August 2014

We have stayed here three times this month and the location cannot be beat. It would get a 5 star but the floor creaks as you walk in the room and that is annyoing at night when someone gets up. We had a travel agent book our room and there was mass confusion which lead to our room being canceled but they got us a room here for the night. It is on George street across from Circular Quay with Ferry, Bus and Train access. Very conventient and the food and weekend street shops nearby are awesome!

Room Tip: Be careful if you want a view. There are minimal rooms with views and some don't have en suite...
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Nathaniel H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
melbourne
Level Contributor
100 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 August 2014

This has to be one of the best located hotels in Sydney and a rare thing, in that it is a small personal place right on the doorstep of Circular Quay. You've got the bridge, the opera house, MCA and the ferries on your doorstep and you can go to and from the airport by train very easily. The building retains much of its 19th century charm and has been sympathetically renovated to enable it to deliver a modern standard of service. The welcome is friendly, so combined with the small scale it feels more like a small town boutique hotel, in contrast to the bland chains that are the standard in central Sydney. The watch out is that rooms vary greatly. The lower price rooms have shared bathrooms which are quite cramped. The more expensive rooms,(in about the $240 price range) are very charming though and tend to be quieter. I had room 30 and it was delightful. Rooms overlooking George St are pretty noisy on a Friday or Saturday, but the staff are good at managing any noise issues.
The breakfast is modest but adequate. Overall, this will continue to be the place I will stay on my regular trips to Sydney and I would strongly recommend the Russell for solo low budget business travellers or city breaks.

Room Tip: Back of the building and pay a higher rate. Avoid a room overlooking the Fortune of War hotel at wee...
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled on business
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank squonkMelbourne
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago
Level Contributor
20 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 August 2014

Sorry for the bad pun in the title, I couldn't help myself. The Russell is above all in a great location to explore Sydney. Located in The Rocks, with many great restaurants, gift shops, museums and a great outdoor market on weekends it's hard to find a better location. I love charming old hotels and this one sure fit that description. The staff was friendly and efficient. On my second stay, I arrived late at night and they greeted me at the door with my room key and told me I could check in after I slept. I chose a room with a shared bath. Even though my room was quite small, it was perfect for just me. Even if my spouse would of been with me, we would of been fine with the room size. I will say the shower room was so small, I had to step inside the shower to close the door, but once inside it was big enough.

Breakfast was not fancy or hot, but more than enough to fill me up.

If you're flying in there is no reason to take a taxi or shuttle, the hotel is a 2 minute walk from Circular Quay Station with trains departing every few minutes. You can also catch a ferry at the same station.

Room Tip: Even if you're a single, pay the extra $10.00 for the Standard Room VS. Single Room.
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled on business
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank gefd28
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York
Level Contributor
33 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 August 2014

We booked at the Russell because of all the favorable reviews on Frommers and the Rough Guide. We booked a standard room for AUD 260 for 3 nights. We arrived late and we were given a handicapped-access room. The first problem was that there was no real shower and the water got all over the place in the bathroom so one could not come back to the bathroom without getting their feet wet. When we went to sleep, we noticed unpleasantly that the bed had springs coming out of the mattress and the mattress was so old and used that it curved like a hammock when in bed. I woke up next morning stiff and with a back pain radiating from my neck all the way down my back on the right side. We decided to tell the management about this problem and to leave to stay at the Shangri-La next door, that was cheaper and the beds looked good in the picture. They offered us instead a better room with a better bed and we stayed. They also gave us 50% off the first night. But, short of comping the first night entirely and paying for a massage next door, what could make up for ruining a whole day (my birthday) out of a three day stay in Sydney? Even the second room was not worth the price in my opinion. The best thing about it was the location.

  • Stayed August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Helpful?
Thank Leila955
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bendigo, Australia
1 review
Reviewed 12 August 2014

An honest place, period furniture, comfort and location which makes up for the kaxk if view, Still, it is a short walk through The Rocks to the Harbour Bridge, Opera House and Circular Quay where the train to the airport is located. It can be noisy at times, but this is well regulated. I have stayed here several times both when on business and with my husband when in Sydney for concerts etc. It is a fanrastic base in this respect.

  • Stayed August 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Helpful?
Thank ChristineAV
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cork, Ireland
Level Contributor
106 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 August 2014

For a fast visit to a great city I reckon this is as good a location as you can get...Not surprising the 4 Seasons is next door! Compact and friendly this little slice of traditional hotel atmosphere was just what the doctor ordered after 30 hours flying from Ireland. Not sure it would be great for family but for the single or couple a great option. I liked the quirky old furniture and felt part of Sydney not some franchise! Shared bathroom - it's been a while since I experienced that but all very clean and great value. Breakfast was decent enough. Highly recommend for a tourist who want to make his /her own way around.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled solo
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank mark g
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Russell Hotel

Property: The Russell Hotel
Address: The Russell Hotel 143A George St | The Rocks, Sydney, New South Wales 2000, Australia
Phone Number:
Region: Australia > New South Wales > Sydney > The Rocks
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant
Hotel Style:
#41 Romantic Hotel in Sydney
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — The Russell Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 30
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Russell Hotel with just 29 delightfully different rooms is perfectly located for the Sydney visitor seeking a convenient and characterful base from which to explore this exciting city.Sydney is literally on your doorstep at the Russell with Circular Quay, Sydney Harbour and the Museum of Contemporary Art just across the road.The Russell Hotel is a gorgeous bed and breakfast hotel known for its superb location and charm.No two guest rooms are identical at The Russell. The Russell offers a variety of ensuite rooms and very affordable rooms with shared bathroom. The largest rooms overlook George Street whilst guests in search of tranquillity might prefer one of the courtyard rooms or one above Nurses Walk. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Russell Hotel Sydney
Russell Hotel Sydney
Russell Sydney

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