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Hotel review: Little National Hotel Sydney


Little National Hotel Sydney details

  • Where: 26 Clarence Street, Sydney.
  • When: 18 December 2020.
  • Room type: Little National Room (king bed), 17m2.
  • Cost: From $199 p/night.
  • Hotel star rating: 4-star.
  • Book: Through Wotif or for a limited time through Luxury Escapes and RedBalloon.

Stephanie Yip's review, in short

  • My star rating: ★★★★1/2.
  • Cost: Amazing value for the location, service and bonus extras.
  • Location: Super convenient, located right above Wynyard Station.
  • Decor: Clean and modern.
  • Check-in/out: Quick and seamless.
  • Room: Crisp, clean and modern, though compact (standard room is 17m2). The larger Big Room is 25m2.
  • Food: Only has a rooftop bar with nibbles but food delivery is an option.
  • Facilities: Minimal, has a gym and rooftop bar but no restaurant or pool.

In a world where digital nomads and working from home are quickly becoming the norm, the arrival of Little National in Sydney couldn't be better timed.

Opened in November 2020, this newly minted CBD hotel is a digital-savvy stay for the traveller who doesn't need spas, swimming pools or in-room balconies, but does need gadgets, meeting spaces and unlimited coffee.

That is, on top of a super comfy bed, plush bathrobes, rooftop bar and 5-star service.

We were invited to stay for a night and can honestly say that whether you're here for business or leisure, Little National Hotel does not disappoint.

Bed in the Little National Hotel Sydney

The cost

Sydney accommodation can cost anywhere from $200 a night to $500+ a night, so finding a hotel of this quality on the lower end of the scale is a dream.

Yes, you are compromising on a few things to get the price this low, including floor space and some in-house facilities. But if you typically don't use these anyway (I personally am not the kind to swim laps at a hotel pool) then you won't miss these little luxuries.

Front door of Little National Hotel Sydney

The location

Housed directly on top of Wynyard Station – though soundproofed so you don't realise it – Little National Hotel Sydney couldn't be better placed if it tried.

It's a short stroll to the Barangaroo precinct and its ferry terminals and within walking distance of Circular Quay and The Rocks.

For everywhere else, the train station and bus stops are right downstairs.

Bathroom in the Little National Hotel Sydney

The decor

Little National Hotel Sydney has a light, airy and modern feel.

Its rooms are painted in shades of white with light brown timbers and black accents to give a sense of space to an otherwise compact room. Windows are ceiling-to-floor to bring in the sunshine and furniture is slimline to give you that much more space to move around.

Common areas boast high ceilings and utilise glass walls as partitions to make for a seamless transition from space to space.

Check in reception in the Little National Hotel Sydney

The check-in/check-out process

To check in, you'll first pass through a front desk on the ground floor of the hotel. Then you'll be directed to the lobby on the first floor via the elevator.

On your left is the option for self check-in while in front is the personalised check-in.

As there was no-one else checking in when we arrived we opted for the personalised check-in as I tend to welcome the service.

However, if you'd prefer to reduce face-to-face contact or there is a queue, there are a number of self check-in terminals to sort you out quickly.

All in all, check-in was smooth and friendly, though very succinct. While we were escorted to the elevator to explain how the system worked we weren't given the spiel about facilities or dining that other hotels give.

I'm not sure if this is standard for Little National or due to COVID-19 to reduce interaction time.

Either way once we were in the room there was a welcome note and iPad that explained what we needed to know.

Stef on Little National Hotel Sydney bed

The room

We were given a standard Little National Room on the eighth floor which had views of the city block around us. FYI: the hotel itself doesn't tower over its neighbours, so you won't get skyline views. Instead, you'll see the busy street below and a variety of offices at your room level.

For those wary about prying eyes, the windows have two levels of privacy: a block-out blind and sheer curtains. When used, you'll be met with a haven of intimacy and quiet.

The room itself is narrow but fits everything you need. There's a full bathroom with standing rain shower and refillable amenities by Appelles Apothecary to keep plastic waste down.

Further into your sanctum is a slimline cupboard, complete with physical and virtual mini bar (for a full range of drink and snack options), teas by T2, Nespresso pod machine, kettle, bathrobes, slippers and ironing board.

Beside it are a small round table, chair and side table to place your personal items on.

At the very end, eating up the width of the room, is a king-sized bed laden with super king pillows and fluffy doonas that make you feel as though you're lying on a cloud. There's a small gap between it and the window to dangle your feet off or lay any tech on and at the foot of the bed is a wide screen TV with free movies. Although looking at the catalogue the selection was slim.

Welcome gifts were strewn around the room making the stay that much more exceptional. And adding that much more value to the already affordable price tag.

During our stay there was a cast-iron tea set with T2 evening sleep preparation tea and a handful of Lindt chocolates to settle us in for the night.

Our tip? Check out what packages are running at the moment to get the most bang for your buck. At the time of writing Luxury Escapes has a deal with $100 worth of dining credit, free choccies and late check-out. RedBalloon has a deal with a chocolate platter, cocktails for two and late check-out.

Rooftop bar in the Little National Hotel Sydney

The food

There's no in-house restaurant at Little National Hotel Sydney, though the hotel does have a contingency plan to keep guests sated: food delivery.

Your welcome pack gives you a step-by-step explanation of how this works. But basically you can order from any available food delivery service and have it delivered to reception.

From there the staff will bring it up to your room. Or, if you'd prefer, up to the rooftop bar where you can dine in a restaurant-like setting. And order drinks to go with your meal, if that's your game.

Otherwise there are nibbles you can order at the bar to the tune of toasties and bread and dip platters.

Gym in the Little National Hotel Sydney

The facilities

Under its roof, this boutique hotel has a sizable gym on the lobby level and a lounge, library and bar on its rooftop.

The rooftop is locked to guests only as you need your room key to access it, though you could invite business guests up if you meet them at the lobby and bring them up with you.

The fitness centre held a variety of cardio, core and strength equipment. It was pristine, quiet and overlooked office buildings like your standard business hotel gym.

The ultimate highlight though was the rooftop terrace. Perched on the 12th floor, it's sectioned into three spaces.

Library in the Little National Hotel Sydney

The first is the library, with long wooden tables, power outlets and free tea, coffee and mineral or sparkling water ready for those business meetings to take place.

The second is the outdoor terrace (featured image). Made of a variety of small and large tables, wooden decking and greenery, it's great for breakfast lounging and soaking up the sunshine.

Lounge in the Little National Hotel Sydney

The final is the lounge where sofas and armchairs surround a fire pit. Again, those floor-to-ceiling windows make an appearance to let the light in while keeping you cosy and dry. Call it the perfect place for late nights in winter when all you want to do is cuddle up underneath the night sky.

The verdict

Small on the outside, Little National Hotel Sydney packs a big punch for anyone looking for a tech-smart, super comfortable stay in Sydney CBD that won't blow your budget.

There's enough room to relax and stay connected – whether it's to family and friends or your work life – and more than enough little luxuries to make this a bit of a treat, too.

Stephanie and her husband stayed at Little National Hotel Sydney as guests of the hotel.

Book: Little National Hotel Sydney through Wotif.

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