From the moment we walk in through the large automatic doors of Larmont Sydney by Lancemore, the cool air welcomes us like a gentle ocean breeze on a summer’s day. Spacious, airy and stylishly decorated in a pale palette, it’s clear that global architecture firm Hassell Studio has worked its elegant touch to bring to life the vision of the Lancemore Group’s CEO Julian Clark.
Behind the high marble reception desk, the friendly hotel staff are keen to help us check in but the transaction takes on a more personal note when the host steps around to the front to talk us through the details of our stay. The quick but detailed brief includes access to our accommodation and parking spot* (make sure you book ahead), and additional facilities (the 24-hour Anytime Fitness gym next door, the MindBodyLife yoga studio on the mezzanine level, and dinner and breakfast at the adjacent Hyde Restaurant).
In keeping with the rejuvenation of the Kings Cross and Potts Point area, just a short distance from the legendary – and recently jazzed-up – Coca-Cola sign, the Larmont has risen like a phoenix from the ashes. The 103 generously sized rooms and suites are situated on seven floors, and the quality of the build speaks to the fact that there is minimal city noise once ensconced inside.
The top floor, the twelfth, where we are staying in a 60-square-metre Signature Suite (there are four available, each with a slightly different layout and views) that affords a spectacular panoramic view from the floor-to-ceiling windows running across the luxury bedroom suite and well-appointed, spacious bathroom.
This isn’t something we get to experience every day so we step out onto the large private balcony to soak up the sights across Port Jackson, from the Harbour Bridge across Fort Denison to Shark Island, over to Port Piper and South Head.
While the landscape is mottled with buildings, it’s still nothing short of spectacular, and we plan to grab a bottle of champagne (we’ll opt for the Mumm rather than the extremely tempting-but-out-of-our-price-range Dom Perignon that also resides in our minibar) and make the most of the changing light at sunset.
Once our awe has settled, for now, we throw ourselves down on the king-sized bed, remark on the comfort and number of pillows and channel the inner neediness that suggests we should take a pick from the Pillow Menu.
We don’t need to for our one-night stopover, but if you’re here on business or for a longer social stay, you’ll want to ensure your head has the perfect resting place.
We do, however, pair an iPhone with the Bose SoundTouch and add our own musical personalities to our accommodation. If you’re staying for a while, you’ll definitely make good use of the 55-inch Samsung Smart TV, and Apple TV with Netflix access but all we need is the suite’s iPad, which is loaded with information about the hotel, our stay, where to eat and where to play.
The expansive windows extend across to the bathroom (as does the balcony), which also captures the harbour views, and sitting in the deep, freestanding bath it’s a joy to behold the views for our eyes only. If you’re pushed for time and can’t indulge in a soak, a powerful waterfall shower makes for a speedy and pleasurable experience, with the luxe products on offer providing another simple, effective – and expected – touch. There’s also a shower hose, should you need an additional blast of aqua or a quick refresher.
Like us, you probably have plans outside the hotel. However, there is a small library in the lobby, and a number of little nooks dotted around where you can read or write, although the ample in-room facilities should meet all your needs.
The expansive windows extend across to the bathroom (as does the balcony), which also captures the harbour views, and sitting in the deep, freestanding bath it’s a joy to behold the views for our eyes only.
Taking a tip from the iPad, we choose to spend our evening at Ms G’s where we feast on share plates of Sydney rock oysters with ginger and lime, cheeseburger spring rolls, grilled eggplant with miso caramel glaze and furikake, Chiang Mai Gyoza with spicy pork, and Bangkok fried chicken. Sadly, we leave no room for the legendary Stoner’s Delight part 3, which needs to be seen to be believed. Next time.
Sleeping like logs in the quiet cool suite means we’re refreshed and ready to work out at the gym before a hearty breakfast of omelettes and coffee at the Hyde Restaurant, which sets us up perfectly for the day ahead. Anytime Fitness is large enough to accommodate execs before a busy day while the yoga studio makes for a good wind-down post-work.
The extensive research carried out by the Lancemore Group combines in Larmont Sydney to ensure a boutique feel that’s a world away from the hustle and bustle of the CBD – and, indeed, Kings Cross, which is a mere handful of steps away from the front door – but has everything you need for a work visit or city break.
*NB: The hotel has a number of parking spots available but, be warned, the navigation is not for the faint-hearted and may require an L-plater allowance of tweaks and turns for you to get in between the designated lines – not to mention avoiding some low, sloped ceilings. If this idea fills you with dread, your friendly front desk hosts can park for you.