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“Super Cool!”

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Ovolo 1888 Darling Harbour
Ranked #3 of 175 Hotels in Sydney
Certificate of Excellence
Los Angeles
Level Contributor
50 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
“Super Cool!”
Reviewed 2 April 2014

Yes it's true the queen room is not huge, but bigger than London or NY for sure. I didn't find that a problem. But the rest of it is just killer. The lobby and general interior design and decoration are just amazing. The lobby is a place you'll just love sitting in and sipping a cocktail just enjoying the space. The room is very well appointed with good quality throughout. They haven't skimped on anything. The iPad is very helpful and all the linen and soaps etc are serious quality. The location is very good too tho be aware it is a serious 30 min walk to get to Circular Quay or The Rocks. There is however a close ferry stop and a light rail station. But the Darling harbor area is becoming quite a hip joint with some nice restaurants and bars so you might even prefer that to the madness of the center of town. My very only complaint is the internet system which gives you a log in which only lasts a day and then you have to call to get a new one. Mildly annoying but certainly a tiny complaint for a place this awesome!

Room Tip: If you are picky about space get something bigger than a queen suite.
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
Thank Kakebeen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotel1888, General Manager at Ovolo 1888 Darling Harbour, responded to this review, 4 April 2014
Dear Kakebeen,

It's wonderful hearing from you and thank you for your terrific review! There are lots of room sizes to choose from and I am pleased that you loved the room that you chose. We are thrilled that you also loved the design, the lobby area and all the little touches throughout this amazing property.

Your feedback about the internet was very useful. If guests are now staying for longer than a night they can use a password that will work for days.

Warm regards,
Andrew Adams-Smith
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Sydney
Level Contributor
15 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 April 2014

When we think of travel, it usually means trains, planes or automobiles, but it doesn’t have to. We’re big fans of staycations - staying in an hotel in our own city for a night or two. It’s a great way to explore your home town.

For this staycation, we headed to Pyrmont and 1888 Hotel. It’s under 2kms away from our apartment but we found places we never knew existed. For example, we discovered the Quarryman’s Hotel - a pretty average pub - has been refurbed and is now serving a great range of craft beers.

Our night in 1888 Hotel, which has only been open a few months, was a great choice. It’s well-located on Murray Street in walking distance to Darling Harbour, Pyrmont Bridge and the Star Casino.

But it’s the little things that made 1888 Hotel the perfect hotel for our Sydney staycation. Sure, the bed was so comfortable we almost slept past breakfast. And of course, the staff are incredibly friendly and welcoming.

But it’s the little things. Every one of the 90 rooms has a desk made from the reclaimed timber from when the building was a wool shed back in 1888. The architect designed the interior to fit with the original features of the building so each room has a unique shape and character.

The personality of the hotel’s also reflected in things like its mini bar, which is stocked with guilt-free products. They’re low calorie, gluten free and locally sourced. It’s also probably one of the best value hotel mini bars we’ve seen too.

Each room’s fitted with an iPad which has serves as the hotel directory and also operates the air-con unit. Very flash! You can access the internet from this or reception can issue you with a WiFi code for free in-room internet.

It sounds like the 1888 is going to be one of those high-end boutique hotels only suited to rich tourists or business travellers, doesn’t it? And sure the Attic Room and the junior suites will set you back, but regular rooms and kings are pretty affordable.

Choosing an hotel that wasn’t right in the city centre (but close enough) meant there was plenty for us to explore in a city suburb we hadn’t spent much time before.

It was a great thing to do and we’ll be doing more of them in other parts of Sydney for sure.

1888 Hotel
139 Murray Street
Pyrmont
NSW 2009

www.1888hotel.com.au

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank jimbutcher1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotel1888, General Manager at Ovolo 1888 Darling Harbour, responded to this review, 4 April 2014
Hi Jim,

Thank you for such a comprehensive, considered and outstanding review!

I love the fact that despite living so close you chose 1888 Hotel for your "staycation". We celebrate the history of this heritage listed building and the designers have done a great job, as you noticed, in the design for reuse.

Come back and explore some more of your home town, we have some great recommendations!

Warm regards,
Andrew Adams-Smith
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Sao Paulo
Level Contributor
209 reviews
46 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 119 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 April 2014

The location is good, the reception is interesting. Breakfast is very good but the queen suite is tiny. Pay attention to the square meters when making a reservation. I didn't expect a place called 'queen suite' or king suite to have 18 m2 or 21 m2 (square meters). You don't have where to open your suitcase! The re two (2!) hangers on the wall for your clothes. No drawer, no wardrobe, no cupboard! What they call a desk is a small board. The room is called 'shoebox' by the staff. so you can have an idea how small it is.

  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank marilena57
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotel1888, General Manager at Ovolo 1888 Darling Harbour, responded to this review, 7 April 2014
Dear Marilena,

Thank you for taking the time to share your comments and thank you for your wonderful comments about breakfast and the 5 star rating for service!

I was disappointed to read that your expectations of the room size did not match what you were expecting. I am also disappointed that you have not yet responded to my email relating to this matter.

The room that you booked is called a Shoebox, this name is used on the hotel collateral and marketing material. We also have Junior Suites and The Williamson Suite available, these are the only rooms which we refer to as suites.

I would love to learn how you made the reservation, (i.e. which web site or travel agent you used). With this information I will contact them and ensure that the information they provide their clients is accurate to ensure this misunderstanding does not happen again.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Warm regards,
Andrew Adams-Smith
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Melbourne, Australia
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 March 2014

This hotel is absolutely awesome. Recently had a 3 night stay in Sydney. Spent the first night at 1888 followed by 2 at the Astral at the star. Although, a similar price, they just didn't compare. 1888 wins hands down.

The bedding is the most comfortable bedding I have had in a hotel in years. The rooms presentation is immaculate and very in touch with current trends. My wife was super impressed with the bathroom. The free standing bath was a massive feature and the walk in shower with cool drainage and massive shower head was a hit.

iPad and free wifi was also pretty cool.

Customer service was also A++++. We turned up for a Saturday night with a friend who realised that morning that the accommodation he had booked was actually the wrong night. Even though the hotel was full, the staff helped accommodate him at last minute notice making sure we got a room that could accommodate their last rollaway bed. As the baseball and horse racing wear in town, there wasn't much accommodation left in town for last minute bookings. We really appreciated their help.

Really wished we hadn't booked the 2 nights at the star before we found 1888. Would definitely stay there again if I ever venture to Sydney again and will definitely be telling family and friends.

  • Stayed March 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Steady200382
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotel1888, General Manager at Ovolo 1888 Darling Harbour, responded to this review, 4 April 2014
Hi Steady,

"Absolutely awesome" - thank you for such a wonderful introduction. Your review is most appreciated and it is great to read that the team here was able to find a great solution for your friends.

It looks like you are from Melbourne, so you are nice and close to come back so we can spoil you more!

Warm regards,
Andrew Adams-Smith
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
39 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 March 2014

Although I travelled solo, I wanted the most relaxing stay possible in Sydney and booked the loft suite. Absolutely amazing, the cost too book wasn't cheap but is still in line with other, perhaps less charming, hotels in the area. There really wasn't anything I could fault (except maybe for the tiny fridge that housed the non-complimentary minibar stuff and couldn't take much else).

The receptionists were very friendly and even humorous which I hope is encouraged by management as you can't beat a bit of Aussie banter! I got my key cards and internet access codes for my devices and was offered help to my room. I was in 417.

I was wowed as soon as I walked in, it was very clean and tidy and the air conditioning was very smart and efficient indeed. The bathroom was spotless and there were even robes and slippers provided. The lounge area contained a comfortable sofa and a generously sized TV, full of channels. The storage area contained a safe, the mini bar/fridge, and an iron. In fact it was so cleverly arranged that I wondered where the ironing board was until I discovered it stowed under the main shelf. Dinky little thing, but very smart. The study area contained an ipad for easy use and the Wi-Fi was very quick and continuous... no repeated logins. The bedroom was incredible... there was just a bed and TV, but its the details that matter and the bed was extremely tidy and spacious (not to mention very cosy) and the side spotlights were a nice touch too. If you like a modern room layout, infused with old-school brickwork design, you'll love this place. Note that on Expedia it claims/claimed the room overlooks the city... well, it doesn't really, it's only 4th floor but if you ignore the huge hotel across the road it's still very nice.

I didn't try out the bar but there always seemed to be people there, so I would've tried it if I weren't so busy! The location is right on Darling Harbour, a 5 minute bridge walk takes you right into Sydney's CBD. There is also a very pleasant mall in the shopping centre behind the Wilson car park. If you bring a car here please be aware that on street parking is somewhat restricted (maximum stay times and 24-hour regulations apply in many places). The car parks are NOT cheap so its best to look around locally for certain deals (the Wilson car park sometimes operates early-bird and overnight parking special rates with generous in-after/by and out-after/by times). The transport links are easy, especially if you cross the bridge into the district.

The only recommendation I would make to this hotel is to perhaps consider an electrically operated window blind... the manual pulley is located on the stairwell which makes it slightly awkward to use, especially for a huge window.

Room Tip: I'm not there are any 'bad' rooms per se but I would use 417 again!
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Eddie C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotel1888, General Manager at Ovolo 1888 Darling Harbour, responded to this review, 4 April 2014
G'Day Eddie,

Thanks for such a fantastic and lengthy review!

We are thrilled that you loved staying with us. Thank you for your advice and comments to other travellers which will assist them choosing 1888 Hotel.

We love our Aussie banter - so pleased you did too, mate.

See you again, room 417 will be waiting!

Warm regards,
Andrew Adams-Smith
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South Florida, Florida
Level Contributor
34 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 March 2014

We stayed at this hotel for three nights prior to our cruise out of Sydney on March 10, 2014. After reading previous reviews for this hotel on TA, I decided to give it a try. I am glad I did since it was a perfect choice for a pre-cruise stay. Since our room wasn't ready when we arrived at the hotel around 9:00 AM, they gladly stored our luggage for us so we could go explore the city for a few hours. The front desk staff were very helpful and gave us a few tips before we set out for Darling Harbor (only about a 10-15 minute walk). When we arrived back, our king room on the third floor with an outside window was ready for us. Some of the rooms face the inside atrium, so if you prefer an outside view you may want to request it. Very nice room with an iPad to use and free WiFi (we really enjoyed that amenity), nice comfy king bed, large shower and very nice bath products. The breakfast buffet wasn't included with the price of our room, but we purchased it in advance when we made our reservation and it was delicious. The granola was excellent along with fresh fruit, juice, croissants, etc. We enjoyed our stay at this hotel and would definitely recommend it to anyone traveling to Sydney.

Room Tip: Rooms on the third or fourth floor are very quiet. Ask for a room with a window to the outside.
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank NaplesRP
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotel1888, General Manager at Ovolo 1888 Darling Harbour, responded to this review, 31 March 2014
Dear NaplesRP,

Fantastic - we are thrilled you had such a great stay with us! Thank you for your kind comments, noting some of the unique services that we offer and the great team there is here.

The chef was pleased you loved breakfast - we ship his home made Granola world wide. But rather than having the Granola shipped to you, just come back and enjoy it here!

Warm regards
Andrew Adams-Smith
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washington, dc
Level Contributor
154 reviews
64 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 March 2014

1888 Hotel completely exceeded my expectations, given the price range; affordable hotels are in short supply in Sydney so I was a bit skeptical based on the room rate alone, and I am happy to report that the hotel was far more wonderful than I'd imagined! As others have noted, the bedding is incredibly comfortable; really one of the few best hotel beds I've ever slept in (and I travel a lot so that is saying something!). We opted for a junior suite and the room was pretty huge. More than enough space for two people with loads of baggage for a long International trip plus lounging area. Absolutely spotless. Very good black-out curtains (a big deal if you're trying to sleep at 11 am after an overnight flight, and a much-appreciated touch). Little hallway or street noise on the third floor. Easy to work the temperature controls (we have been finding some pretty complicated thermostats in hotels lately so this was a treat). Gorgeous bathroom with high-end bath products and a really nice soaking tub. I loved the minimalist decor and exposed wood beams.

great location-- 5 minutes walk to Pyrmont Bridge and Harbourside, a couple minutes more to Darling Harbour or Darling Quarter.

Taxi drivers don't seem to know where the hotel is so come with the address or tell them it is across the street from the Darling Harbour Novotel.

All the staff was warm, accommodating, helpful and friendly. Anything we needed, they took care of!

Breakfast from the a la carte menu was priced in line with other Sydney hotel breakfasts (for folks unfamiliar with Sydney, be prepared for sticker shock everywhere you go but that is just how Sydney is, and nothing unique to this hotel) but I thought the quality to be better than at other hotels.

Would like to see more options for breakfast and I understand there will be more options for dining in the evening in the near future, which would make this hotel even closer to perfection than it already is, because sometimes you just don't feel like going anywhere, but the current evening nibbles selection is too limited.

we did have a negative fire alarm experience which many others have pointed out on this site, and I hope/trust that long-term plans are in the works to put an end to that. Would also recommend that the housekeeping staff not call guests when the Do Not Disturb sign is displayed, as that phone call can be a disturbance; many other hotels will slide a (nice quiet) note under the door advising of housekeeping shift hours when the guest does not wish to be disturbed during housekeeping hours, and this small change can have a huge impact to the guest's enjoyment. It wasn't a deal-breaker for us but if you do not wish to have calls to your room (if you're catching up on sleep) you may wish to ask the front desk to block incoming calls.

FWIW it is a smaller hotel so if you are arriving at early morning hours, do not count on your room being available for early check-in; we elected to book the room the night before, to guarantee it being ready for us, and are glad we did (we do this frequently) because we were exhausted. They do offer a shower area if you're not able to get into your room directly on arrival, which is a really nice touch, but in general if you arrive to any hotel anywhere before check-in, you are rolling the dice on if the room will be ready--- just more challenging with a smaller hotel with fewer rooms to turn over!

Room Tip: Read the room descriptions on their website--- they are very informative and descriptive.
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank dcpatti
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotel1888, General Manager at Ovolo 1888 Darling Harbour, responded to this review, 31 March 2014
Dear dcpatti,

Thank you for such a great 5 star review! I am so pleased that we exceeded your expectations and by reading your review you did a lot of homework!

We are happy that you appreciated so many of the little things that we do.

I am sorry for a couple of disturbances that you had and thank you for telling me about them. We have made improvements to the sensitivity of the smoke detectors so the fire alarm is not activated as often as before, one sneaky detector managed to miss the audit. That has now been corrected! We should not call rooms if the "DND" sign is displayed and we do in fact have those little notes that can quietly slid under the door. I will make sure we are using them.

Patti, your feedback was most appreciated. On your next visit let me know what you think about our dinner service (soon to be introduced).

Warm regards,
Andrew Adams-Smith
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Additional Information about Ovolo 1888 Darling Harbour

Property: Ovolo 1888 Darling Harbour
Address: 139 Murray Street | Pyrmont, Sydney, New South Wales 2009, Australia (Formerly 1888 Hotel Darling Harbour)
Phone Number:
Region: Australia > New South Wales > Sydney > Central Business District , City West
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 175 Hotels in Sydney
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Ovolo 1888 Darling Harbour 4*
Number of rooms: 90
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Steeped in history, Ovolo 1888 Darling Harbour was tastefully restored and thoughtfully designed with shutter-happy Instagrammers in mind, providing photo opportunities around every corner so captivating that you really need #nofilter. Originally constructed as a wool store and factory in 1888, the building still bears the original signage of its birth year, visible from the busy streets of Pyrmont. A heritage listed 90-bedroom boutique hotel as well as bar & event space, Ovolo 1888 Darling Harbour brings together Sydney's old world charm and contemporary design with Ovolo's service culture to offer a truly mind-blowing experience in modern hospitality. The collection of rooms each boast 3-metre high ceilings, exposed brick walls, original ironbark beams, concealed uplighting, huge sound proofed period windows, recycled timber work stations, bespoke furniture and feature walls in each room flaunting the colourfully commissioned pieces by celebrated local artist, Jasper Knight. Ovolo 1888 Darling Harbour is located in Sydney's inner-city suburb of Pyrmont, neighbouring Darling Harbour, Sydney CBD, Sydney Fish Market, Sydney Exhibition & Convention Centre, The Star, a wide selection of must-go bars & dining options, and the very best boutique shopping this side of the Southern Hemisphere. But really, who needs to go anywhere when your room rate already includes everything? Continental breakfast*, Wi-Fi, mini bar, self-service laundry, happy hour*, 24 hour gym access? - Yep, all free. ... more   less 
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