It's impossible to resist the Blue's location, an old finger wharf extending out over the water in Woolloomooloo, still surrounded by docked vessels and affording prime views of the marina, the city, and the landmarks on the Harbour.
As is typical in industrial retrofits, some of the wharf’s structure and machinery is left exposed for effect, and rooms are loft-style, many split-level, with vast and sumptuous king beds perched above living areas. The décor is maximalist, in this case avoiding the clichéd sunny Down Under palette in favor of chocolate brown faux suede—an odd choice, and a memorable one. The services are ultra-modern, including broadband internet, so the business travelers are as comfortable as the hipsters on holiday (who may be more interested in the Molton Brown bath products).
Europeans may be surprised at how well Australia does Italian food; Otto, downstairs, is the semi-formal Italian restaurant with views over the marina, and there are a number of more casual options. The wharf isn’t entirely devoted to the hotel; it’s a luxury apartment and entertainment complex as well, which means you don’t have to set foot on dry land if you don’t want to, and certainly not to mingle, as the locals visit the Blue just for the bar. Then again, come morning, you’re so close to the shopping districts and the city’s landmarks that it would be a shame to miss them—take a walk to the Opera House and find not just an arresting Modernist structure but, inside, one of Sydney’s top restaurants as well.
The Wharf at Woolloomooloo, Sydney, New South Wales