Review: Hilton Sydney

While business travel was slow, one of Australia’s best-known business hotels took the chance to revitalise all of its rooms.

Overall Rating

By Matt Lennon, March 29 2022
Hilton Sydney
Country

Australia

City

Sydney

Hotel

Hilton Sydney

Rating

5-star

Room

Executive Room

Notes
The Good
  • Stylish executive lounge
  • Recently refurbished guestrooms
The Bad
  • No Chromecasting limits in-room entertainment
  • Lounge air-conditioning is set very cold
X-Factor
  • Rooms now feel more spacious after rethinking the work desk
Location
Rooms
Meals
Overall

Introduction

Offering 587 recently-refurbished rooms in the centre of the CBD, Hilton Sydney is a go-to for many business travellers and one of the most well-known hotels in Sydney.

Executive Traveller checked into the recently updated Hilton Sydney to put the hotel's changes through its paces.

Location & Impressions

Hilton Sydney enjoys an excellent location between George and Pitt Streets, just across the road from the iconic Queen Victoria Building. 

When your visit instead allows for some downtime, you'll find shopping and dining at QVB, with Pitt Street Mall and Westfield Sydney also just around the corner along with the historic State Theatre.

The nearest train station is Town Hall half a block away, but if yours is a short journey or you’re heading into the south-eastern suburbs, there's a light rail stop (QVB) at Hilton's doorstep on George Street, whisking you through Surry Hills and on to places like the Entertainment Quarter, Randwick Racecourse or other places in minutes.

Room

Executive Traveller was welcomed into Room 3613 – an appropriately titled Executive Room.

Following a mid-2021 refurbishment, new bedding and smart televisions have been fitted along with a rich wooden backboard that adds an element of boutique personality. There’s a new and comfortable velvet armchair next to the bed which makes for a great relaxation spot.

The bathroom offers a walk-in shower and a separate bathtub, and while there isn't an expanse of bench space, shelves provide extra storage.

Hilton Sydney has also introduced what it calls ‘Upon Request Housekeeping’, meaning that a cleaner won't service your room unless you ask for it first. To get the beds made, towels changed or bins emptied, you’ll need to contact the front desk to advise of your preferences.

Work

As part of the refurbishment, Hilton Sydney replaced its traditional work desks with a multi-purpose table positioned in front of the TV along with a leather chair. 

Many Executive Traveller readers expressed concern over the chair situation: but fear not, you can request an office chair to the room if you prefer.

Hilton Sydney has also reopened its Level 36 Executive Lounge, with access between 8am-8pm daily available to Hilton Honors Diamond members and guests in executive rooms and suites.

Choose between two-seat tables which run along the window to restaurant-style dining tables for four or a more comfortable living room setup to relax or watch some TV. If you need a private space for a meeting, you can utilise a 10-seat boardroom.

Drinks are self-service and include soft drinks or sparkling water. There’s a Vittoria coffee machine and plenty of teabags, milk and mugs for you to make your brew of choice.

From 5-7pm each evening, the lounge also serves complimentary canapés, consisting of a wide selection of cakes, cheeses, crackers, cured meats, wagyu beef and vegetarian sliders or even fresh prawns and salads, all of which make for a great pre-dinner appetiser.

Eat

While Hilton is surrounded by plenty of good restaurants outside the hotel, there's just one to be found in-house.

Luke Mangan's Glass Brasserie and wine bar takes pride of place as the hotel's main eatery, with room service also coming from this restaurant until 11pm each evening.

It's a sizeable 220-seat restaurant with a variety of table options ranging from intimate set-ups for two, traditional and bar-style four-seaters for small parties and large moon-shaped booths for groups.

There’s an extensive drinks menu, exemplified by the enormous 3,000-bottle cellar which doubles as the restaurant's centrepiece and features labels from the Clare and Yarra Valleys and more exotic labels from New Zealand, Italy and France.

Breakfast is served in Glass from 7:30 to 11am each morning and is a full buffet with hot and cold items.

Another popular haunt among visitors and locals alike is the iconic Marble Bar, but do check the latest hours though as it isn’t open every night. There's also Zeta Bar on a rooftop terrace but this is only open Fridays and Saturdays from 4pm.

Relax

Hilton Sydney sits above the Fitness First Platinum Pitt Street Gym, with hotel guests enjoying complimentary 24-hour access.

The well-equipped gym boasts a variety of cardio equipment, free weights, fitness classes, and a pool – which is also available to hotel guests, but being part of the public gym, is very much a lap pool rather than a ‘relax by the pool’ space. 

Back in your room, sadly you won’t be able to stream your favourite shows to the television as there’s no Chromecast either built-in or plugged in – something that should have been considered as part of the new TVs installed in the recent refurbishment.

The WiFi will do the job, but you’ll need to use your own device. Alternatively, you can connect your device via screen mirroring as a last resort.

Final Verdict

All things considered, when in town for work, the Hilton sits in a great location with amenities tailored to business travellers. Rooms are compact but include everything you need to stay connected and get your work done in a comfortable space.

The lounge is open and once again delivering a quiet place to work or relax. It was deathly quiet during our visit but hopefully things pick up in line with the return of business travel.

Glass restaurant says it aims to "strike the perfect balance between relaxed get-togethers and fine dining" and currently, it's leaning closer to the former, but it's still a quality experience.

Also read: Our review of the Oakwood Premier Hotel in Melbourne

The author stayed as a guest of Hilton. 

Delta Air Lines - SkyMiles

16 Oct 2017

Total posts 151

Chris, from the room photo it looks like your "best" view was a bunch of other nearby buildings.  Anyone know if high floors have rooms with a more expansive outlook? I'm keen to try the refurbished hotel, it looks and sounds great. Very helpful review.

18 Jul 2018

Total posts 37

If you're on certain sides/corners you would have better views. I stayed recently and I think was on the SW corner so had a view towards Town Hall area which was expansive. Can't remember what floor I was on though.

25 Feb 2022

Total posts 8

Tommygun, just stayed a week there you cannot go wrong, book a corner room and pass the 25th floor you get more panoramic views.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

06 Oct 2016

Total posts 5

Ive stayed there twice this year since refurb and concur, its a huge improvement in my humble opinion over the previous iterations. Beware though, restaurant is still not functioning every day which is inconvenient and room service is quite limited in options.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

30 Nov 2016

Total posts 2

hi Chris,

good review of the refurbishment. I'm a Diamond HH member but have not visited since Dec 2019 due to COVID in 2020, but am keen to return, especially once the Executive Lounge returns.

When I was last there in December 2019, Diamond members received the full buffet breakfast at Glass, as opposed to simply the continental breakfast, but it is at the discretion of the hotel (I believe a few years earlier, they had changed to continental for both Diamond and Gold, only to have this reversed for Diamond members).

Can you please confirm whether this is still the case, or as you noted in the piece, Diamond and Gold members only receive complimentary continental breakfast (strictly going by the Hilton Member benefits).

thanks Chris and ET team,
keep up the great work

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

06 Oct 2016

Total posts 5

Hi Pierrewu

I'm Diamond and stayed at the Syd Hilton in March and April of this year and both times was granted full buffet breakfast at Glass due to Status. No issues at all.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

30 Nov 2016

Total posts 2

thanks davidthomson_98, a relief to hear :-)

30 Mar 2022

Total posts 1

Hi Chris, i am too a Diamond HH member and can confirm you receive complimentary full buffet breakfast each morning in Glass Restaurant.   Just returned from there this morning 30.3.22

Singapore Airlines - KrisFlyer

02 Dec 2016

Total posts 50

Great review ! I last stayed at the Hilton Sydney in Dec 2017, and the rooms look much better now.

So, self served buffet breakfast is back in Sydney hotels now ? (I live in Melbourne)

And, can any Gold members tell me if they received complimentary continental or buffet breakfast ? (I am planning to visit Sydney for the Vivid festival)

Thank you.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

06 Oct 2016

Total posts 5

Semi self served @desafinado74. You line up and the chef adds the hot items to your plate you ask for (and yes, you can ask them to be more generous. Juice was not in the typical self serve format but in individual bottles. Quite nice actually. Omelettes and coffee are ordered from the wait staff (no charge unless you are going for an espresso as per normal) etc. I have had the same experience in the Adelaide Hilton and Melbourne Doubletree this year as well.

Singapore Airlines - KrisFlyer

02 Dec 2016

Total posts 50

Thanks a lot for the info David. I am actually going to stay at the Sofitel Darling Harbour, but will pop into the Hilton for the buffet breakfast.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

24 Jan 2018

Total posts 577

That's similar to the Hilton in Brisbane (Rm 2508, June 21 and 22, last).  Executive Lounge re-opened and service in the EL was truly exceptional (a new benchmark in Hilton ELs, IMHO).  


Hi Guest, join in the discussion on Hilton Sydney