Travel News

Ace Hotel Sydney is finally open and taking bookings

It’s the first southern hemisphere location for the acclaimed American hotel chain. Rooms are now available, lobby restaurant Loam is open for business, and chef Mitch Orr’s Kiln is just weeks away.

By Callum McDermott
The lobby at Ace Hotel Sydney
Sydney is always bubbling with new hotel openings – even in these pandemicky times. But the opening of Ace Hotel Sydney, the first hotel below the equator from the American hotel chain, is particularly exciting news.
Since it was first announced in 2019, the Sydneyside instalment of the brand has been keenly anticipated. The first Ace Hotel opened in 1999, in Seattle. Its well-priced rooms, considered interiors, a pronounced focus on up-and-coming artists, and its quirky energy quickly won it flocks of fans. Eventually, new locations opened across America, before international forays – a Kengo Kuma-designed Kyoto outpost, a now-shut Shoreditch spot, a soon-to-come Toronto edition – started opening too.
Photo: Anson Smart
Each Ace Hotel is different; tailored to its surroundings and the tastes of the local community. It arguably pioneered this model – of a chameleonic hotel chain where each outpost is distinct from the next. This iteration of Ace is in Surry Hills, in a former brick factory right at the city's edge. It's a brisk walk to restaurants like Nomad, Alberto's Lounge and Pellegrino 2000. It's also two minutes away from Paramount House Hotel – its nearest competitor, literally and figuratively.
Here's what guests can expect. There are 257 rooms, designed by Melbourne-based Flack Studio. They range from capacious suites with tea-green leather sofas, freestanding baths and views out over Surry Hills; to rooms with city view terraces; to standard king-sized and double bed twin shares. Fully accessible rooms are available to book, and there are also pet-friendly rooms, too.
Photo: Anson Smart
It's de rigueur for hotels to try to appeal to locals as well as guests, but Ace Hotel has an established track record of pulling it off. Mainly through restaurants. Ace Hotel has two: Loam, helmed by the hotel's executive chef Heidi Flanagan; and soon-to-open rooftop restaurant Kiln, by chef Mitch Orr of beloved, now-closed restaurant ACME. Then there's the Lobby, a casual bar in, well, the lobby. P&V's Mike Bennie, Australia's totem for all things natural wine, has designed the drinks offerings for all three. And lastly, there's Good Chemistry – a laneway café that eventually becomes a bar throughout the course of the day.
Photo: Anson Smart
As is tradition at Ace Hotels, cultural programming including talks and presentations, will be a fixture in the lobby. There's also a permanent art program, complemented by a rotating artist-in-residence's works on display.
Over 20 years since its founding, there are only 10 Ace Hotels; Sydney securing the first one in the Southern Hemisphere is a real coup. It's a burnishing of the city's global credentials, as it reintroduces itself to the world.
Ace Hotel Sydney
47/53 Wentworth Ave, Sydney, NSW