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Kimpton Margot Sydney – an artful reimagination of a contemporary Golden Age landmark.

When it comes to hotels, Sydney has historically suffered from a lack of variety, however, if you follow our travel-related features you would have realized that a new generation of hoteliers, designers and smart independents are giving the big names a run for their money.


Having stayed in plenty of overnighters ranging from cosy inns in the backstreets of Muscat to cutting-edge offerings from international brands in metropolises, we have grown to become naturally attracted by stop-ins that get the simple things right and understand the value of thoughtful hospitality with all customer touchpoints being considered.


Comfortable and well-equipped rooms with high-end amenities in a convenient, accessible location are only basic facets for an inner city five star hotel, which should ideally be substantiated by exceptional customer service with friendly and attentive staff, intrinsically motivated to go above and beyond to meet guests’ needs along with the provision of personalized experiences to make the stay memorable.


All the better if the aforementioned is delivered with reasonable prices.


Sounds like too much to ask? Well, enter a recent addition to the luxury boutique hotel scene of Sydney and one that has character in spades, i.e. the Kimpton Margot Sydney.

Having incarnated in 2022 within short walking distance of Sydney’s landmarks, including but not limited to Circular Quay, the Opera House, Sydney Harbour Bridge along with the city’s prime restaurant and shopping offerings, once one enters, the hotel’s vibrant interior design inspired by local fauna and flora set in scene against the framework natural materials and earthy tones provide, exudes a welcoming feel of glamour and indulgence that seamlessly transports one into another world - a world informed by an aesthetic experience reminiscent of the luxurious furnishings, ornate architecture and lively atmosphere of the roaring 1920s when jazz-age flappers reigned supreme.


Situated in a heritage building that has been beautifully restored with its signature Art Deco architecture intact, in terms of ambience the Kimpton Margot Sydney manages to strike a delicate balance between lavish and opulent elements lifted from the golden era of extravagant hospitality to marry them with elegantly designed contemporary amenities, including but not limited to a fitness centre (with all the trimmings, including Peloton bikes and a dedicated yoga room), a rooftop bar, pet friendly policies, Lekker bikes to borrow, nightly social hours where rotating staff proffers local wines, a restaurant serving modern Australian cuisine and an exquisite bar that bookends the stunning lobby.


Now, it appears like all boxes are ticked as far as offerings that one would expect from a five star rated hard product, but how about the implementation of hospitality?

If a weekend visit to Sydney is looming on the horizon for you or if you are umming and ahing about where to take your better half for a memorable, special occasion, there are few destinations and offerings on terra australis that come close to what the award-winning homegrown chef, i.e. Luke Margon and his incarnation at the Kimpton Margot Sydney offer with its dining and brunch offerings.


While a carefully calibrated five course degustation with bottomless (sparkling) wine might sound like a winning combination per se, what elevates the experience only further accentuates Kimpton Margot Sydney’s idiosyncratic approach to hospitality:


The effortless way the intrinsically motivated staff ease you into the proceedings is quite something, which is nuanced by espousing the power of effective introductions and revealing how to elegantly and seamlessly do the two-step hand-off, which allows to embrace the art of letting guests get on among themselves while the hosts infuse the ambience with attentive service, a knack for reading the room, unintrusive banter and good cheer.


Serenaded by the subtle sonic emissions of a dedicated DJ, the degustation, which is also offered in a vegan variant, takes your palate on an enjoyable and at times unexpected rollercoaster ride of flavours and textures with each course feeling well-thought through.


While never being over the top, each course pushes the envelope in terms of expectations, thereby making the total of the experience much more than the mere sum of the individual constituents. A pity it was that during our stay the much fabled about prawn toast appetizer was not on offer.


Remember the Great Gatsbyan vibe we alluded to in the beginning?


In old-school European restaurants the bar trolley has never truly gone out of style and after a recent stay at London’s Connaught Hotel and having indulged in its trademark Martini trolley as well as the Macallan Trolley at Four Season Sydney’s Grain Bar, it was fantastic to have the brunch punctuated by tableside cocktails being proffered.


It feels difficult to resist the charm of a curated spirit, specialty mixes and garnishes, as well as an engaging bartender to shake or stir it up for you, let alone if there is another trolley meandering with the option to treat yourself to a Oscietrar caviar bump accompanied with either a glass of Taittinger or a shot of Tilde’s recently released raw vodka, which proves to be a bit on the harsher side than the Beluga option.


Substantiating the tableside services is the showmanship of the hosts, who wheel around the dining room during service, effectively using the opportunity to connect with guests they might not otherwise have the time to engage with from across a busy bar.


By rolling up table side, and explaining the cocktails option—rather than handing out a menu—curious diners appreciate the chance to converse and learn, and by paying each table a visit, the mobile bartender establishes a rapport with every customer.

After spending a night in an outrageously spacious room with a supremely comfortable bed and a tad of pampering courtesy of inclusive extras like Mr & Mrs Smith toiletries, it was fantastic to have the option to fall back on the “Forget It – We Got It” menu, which offers a range of amenities on demand amongst which is one of the more intriguingly themed hotel robes, illustrated by local artist Georgia Draws a House, which is a distinct highlight.

The morning after saw us connect with friends overseas via a live Peloton class in the spacious and well-equipped basement gym, followed by a dip in the rooftop pool before easing into the Sunday with a helping of the eclectic, complementary tea selection which is the healthier Morning Kickstart equivalent to the daily boozy social hours.


Having relied on the Kimpton Margot Sydney’s plush, courtly velvet couches in the grand lobby under the glass-tiled grid of skylights of the ceiling, which is held up by two-storey reddish hued Scagliola pillars, for meetings before, it was quite astonishing to experience via an overnight stay how well and harmoniously the Kimpton Margot Sydney team has managed to perfection all customer touch-points while adding a sophisticated je-ne-sais-quoi, which is exactly the elusive dimension that a lot of inner-city hotels lack.


Having stayed at a few Kimptons in the US over the years, it is wonderful to see how in the brand’s tradition of individualising its properties by paying homage to the respective heritage and surroundings, what was once the headquarters for the Sydney Water Board has been reimagined as a seven storied Art Deco delight centred around a mélange of classic modern, extravagant old timey ornamental décor, resulting in an eclectic timeless classic appeal.


Summa summarum: The Kimpton Margot Sydney is an excellent destination hotel with charm galore – be it for a city visit, staycation or the indulgence that Luke’s Kitchen and the Wilmot Bar offer.


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Words by AW.

Photos courtesy of Kimpton Margot Sydney.

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