NileGuide Expert Says:
Chi, The Spa at the Shangri-La, now adds another layer of luxury to a hotel that already oozes decadence and to-die-for views.
176 Cumberland Street
2000 Sydney, Australia
Hotel star rating:
As for international chain hotels, this deluxe beauty is one of the best. Perfectly positioned in the historic Rocks precinct, and with unrivaled harbor and Opera House views, many of the city's major CBD and Circular Quay attractions are just a short walk away.
Of course, all the usual 5-star trappings are in abundance. But where the Shangri-La really shines is in the extraordinary range of on-site dining, business, health and leisure options. Starting at the top (literally) on level 36, the award-winning Altitude restaurant and Blu Bar on 36 (so named because you can see right out to the Pacific Ocean) offer views that cannot be matched. And the service is pretty impressive too.
Elsewhere in the sprawling landscaped complex, you get all day contemporary dining at Café Mix on level one, and also in the Lobby Bar. Authentic Japanese can be had in the Teppanyaki restaurant, while the beautifully restored Harts Pub is a throwback to more traditional times.
Active guests can partake of the fully-equipped gym, indoor swimming pool and sundeck. But for sheer indulgence, Chi, The Spa at Shangri-La, takes health and well-being to a whole new level. It's opulent spa suites offer massages and treatments based on natural healing philosophies as shared by many Asian cultures.
There are over 550 guest rooms, across 18 room categories, 95% of which have harbor views. To be sure, some of the decor and public space furnishings look a little dated (originally opened in the early 90s as the ANA hotel), but these are easily overlooked by the attentive staff, abundant amenities and that beckoning view.