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“Very Clean, Great Location, But Bad Attitude”

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The Mercantile Hotel
Ranked #110 of 179 Hotels in Sydney
Reviewed 10 December 2010

You can't beat the location of the Mercantile, but they have a nasty attitude. We arrived in the pouring rain, and we had to carry our own luggage up three flights of stairs. There is no bell boy, and the woman who checked us in did not help. When I asked her for two extra towels, she threw them on my wet backpack. When I asked her for a second luggage rack, she said, "This is not the Hilton." I had asked her nicely.

The room was clean, and there is soap, but no shampoo. I asked for a quiet room, but there was alot of street noise, including some construction while we were there.

There is no desk to check in, and you have to pay your bill during limited day time hours. At breakfast, we asked the cook for some tomatoes (which I saw in front of him), instead of pork. He made a sarcastic remark, but gave me the tomatoes anyway.

The last morning, when we had to leave very early for the airport, I asked if we could get some cheese and rolls and juice the night before, since breakfast was included. I got a firm "no." I got another retort about, "This is not the Hilton."

Overall, the room was clean, and the location great, but for $140, they really should dump the attitude, and perhaps have a full time desk for check in and luggage help.

  • Stayed: November 2010, travelled with family
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2  Thank CaliforniaLady09
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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186 - 192 of 228 reviews

Reviewed 4 December 2010

Stayed at this hotel in early November from Monday night to Thursday morning. Had a roadside room with huge bathroom which had spa bath and a large shower. The road noise from the buses was heard at times so the windows could do with double glazing or tighter seals. But if you’re after a central location for The Rocks, then this is it. Staff very helpful. And funny enough as it’s an Irish Pub most of the staff were from Ireland. Great complimentary cooked breakfast of eggs, black pudding, bacon, toast, etc… The place had no phone in the rooms which was a major inconvenience, so had to use a payphone down the road or mobile. Considering we paid for the top end room in the place, it was a little disappointing. Was told that it was because backpackers wrecked the phones, although the only patrons there at the time were middle aged and didn’t look the type. Easy walk to visitors centre, patisseries, restaurants and Circular Quay for access to ferries and train. Taxi from international airport will cost about $50. Taking a train will be about $19 each with a 600m walk to hotel from Circular Quay.

  • Stayed: November 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Opusman_69
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 December 2010

stayed for 3 nights. room is basic but for just over $100 a night for the room in the rocks is a bargain especially at the "Rocks". you don't come to Sydney to sit in your room anyway. pub is down stairs and is good for a drink or two especially at weekends. room was serviced every day which is rare in Oz.

would recommend to couples and young people who want to stay in city centre on the cheap and not in a hostel.

Would definitely stay again

  • Stayed: November 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank francey75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 November 2010

Like the title says, a hotel in name only! The Mercantile is an Irish pub with accommodation above, so if you want a nice reception with room service & an extensive choice of breakfast, this is NOT the place for you. Instead you have to speak to someone behind the bar to book in (still using that dog eared exercise book & pencil), carry your own suitcases up the stairs (no lift) & if you do not fancy a "cooked breakfast" in the morning, I'm not sure what you do!
Having said those awful things the location of The Mercantile is superb, being only 5/10 mins walk from all of Circular Quay's attractions. Staying in "The Rocks" area of Sydney is a must because everything you need starts from here. The Harbour Bridge/Opera House/Manly & Darling Harbour Ferrys/hop on - hop off tour bus/Botanical Gardens & The Rocks itself. You can even catch the train from the airport direct to Circular Quay for 15$ & takes about 15 mins.
My wife & I paid 140$ for a double room with ensuite corner bath (circa 1980) & walk in shower. The room was large, had windows that you could open (3rd floor) & included a hearty cooked breakfast in the morning. An extra bonus was a small empty fridge & tea/coffee facilities topped up everyday, BUT there was no wardrobe -- just a line of hooks on the back of the door!!
The biggest downside to The Mercantile is that every Fri/Sat & Sunday the road o/side(George St) is closed off to traffic & a craft market is set up. Combined with this the hotel has "live" Irish entertainment from early evening until about 11.00pm on each of these nights. So if you are looking for an early sleep -- look again! Luckily we were there from Sunday until Thursday so only had the one night experience, the rest of the week was fine.
So staying at The Mercantile is certainly different & for us, once was enough. Mind you I priced The Holiday Inn just a few yards further down & it started from 200$ a day room only, so it could be said The Mercantile is good value. The Rocks area is superb, like staying in a living museum with old buildings all around as it was the original jumping off point for all those naughty travellers in days of old.
As for Sydney Harbour & it's surroundings you will not be able to stop clicking away, absolutely lovely as indeed Australia is -- we did not want to leave BUT as the fridge magnets say: "Australia, it's a bloody long way mate."

  • Stayed: October 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank Wouldyouadamandeveit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 October 2010

I spent two nights at the Mercantile Hotel. The best thing about this place is the location: right in the heart of the Rocks which is the historic part of Sydney. And just one block from Sydney Harbor. From this hotel you can quickly walk to most of the Sydney highlights: the Harbor Bridge, the Opera House, the Botanic Gardens, Circular Quay with its ferry and subway stations, lots of restaurants. The Mercantile is only a few blocks from the Four Seasons, which I think costs about $300 per night, and one block from the Old Sydney Holiday Inn. But the Mercantile cost me only about $75/night U.S. and that included a full breakfast. So the location is superb.

The breakfast is served until 9:30am, and included juice, toast, coffee or tea, and eggs. It was nothing to write home about, but it was okay.

I did like the Irish guy who appears to run the place, and the staff are for the most part very nice and cordial. The place has a relaxed atmosphere which I liked.

There is a restaurant and pub at the hotel. The restaurant serves Irish food, bangers and mash and all that. I did not eat there.

So I've now mentioned all the good parts: great location, nice staff, free cooked breakfast, relaxed vibe.

I also liked the antique feel of the hotel--I don't know just how old it is, but it is definitely old. And it hasn't been spiffed up lately, although that didn't bother me. For example, the carpet on the stairs was worn. So the place has character.

My room could best be described as spartan. It was small, with a single bed, and small table, and an electric fan on a floor stand. And that was pretty much it. But the bed was comfortable, and there was a window that opened. I did love the great tin ceiling and crown moulding. I chose the cheaper room which comes with shared bath. There were 4 large bathrooms in a row right next to my room, and at any one time at least several of them were available. They were very clean, and everything worked fine.

One potential problem at this hotel could be the noise from the pub. I asked to stay in a room on the back of the hotel (as I had read the reviews about noise), and I was given a back room on the third floor. My first night was a Thursday, and there was virtually no noise. The second night was a Friday, and the pub was a-rockin' and there was lots of noise, even though I was on the third floor and in the back. But I just turned on the fan in my room, and the white noise from the slightly noisy fan drowned out enough of the music noise to allow me to sleep just fine.

  • Stayed: October 2010, travelled solo
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Thank fieldsold
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 August 2010

Staying at The Mercantile reminded me of solo travels through Ireland years ago -- scent of stale beer in the air, modest room, decent price, great location. The owners get bonus points for modern clean shared bathrooms on the hall. All in all, a fine pick for budget accommodations if you're not planning to spend much time in the room.

  • Stayed: August 2010, travelled on business
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Thank TMJE98033
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 August 2010

The Mercantile Hotel sits at the upper end of George Street, just below the Harbour Bridge in the Rocks. The location is absolutely perfect: steps away from the Rocks Market, the hop-on hop-off Sydney Explorer bus stop, a short walk from the Circular Quay ferry & rail station.

The ground floor of the hotel is an Irish pub that doubles as a breakfast room in the morning. Full cooked Irish breakfasts were delicious: eggs, toast, grilled tomato & mushroom, potato pancake, juice, & coffee or tea (there were also meat options for non-vegetarians).

We'd been warned that pub/street noise might be an issue, but we were there midweek and had no trouble sleeping.

Our room was just above the pub: TV, refrigerator, double bed, 2 nightstands, ample outlets for charging gadgets, and a big bathroom with shower and jetted tub. The bathroom was pristine.

Compared to other lodging choices in the area, this place was a great value and we'd stay there again in a heartbeat.

  • Stayed: June 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank AWeekOrAWeekend
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Mercantile Hotel

Address: 25 George St | The Rocks, Sydney, New South Wales 2000, Australia
Region: Australia > New South Wales > Sydney > The Rocks
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge
Hotel Style:
#12 Best Value Hotel in Sydney
Price Range: £69 - £120 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2.5 star — The Mercantile Hotel 2.5*
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Australia's longest running Irish Pub, in the heart of Sydney's historic Rocks precinct. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Mercantile Hotel Sydney

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