A veritable oasis in Sydney’s urban centre, Hyde Park’s leafy surrounds and manicured lawns are just a three-minute walk from Kimpton Margot. Ramble along the famed fig tree-lined avenues and picturesque paths, stopping at the ANZAC Memorial and Archibald Fountain along the way. Take a breather in the shade beneath one of the 580 towering trees, or watch the meditative fountain display at Sandringham Memorial Garden on the eastern side of the park. With more than 16 hectares of lush landscape to explore, there’s plenty to catch your eye at Australia’s oldest public park, and more historic Sydney sights are mere moments away. This verdant, heritage-listed park is conveniently fringed by the Supreme Court of New South Wales, St Mary’s Cathedral, the Australian Museum and the flagship David Jones department store.
Because every holiday should include a little retail therapy, Pitt Street Mall is at your service – an easy seven-minute meander up the road from Kimpton Margot. More than 600 stores, both major department stores as well as fashionable centres Glasshouse, Sydney Arcade, Westfield Sydney, Mid City Shopping Centre and The Strand Arcade lure shoppers to this famed mall, with unending retail delights squeezed within just two city blocks. If you have the will, Australia's most cosmopolitan shopping precinct can easily represent a full day’s outing in Sydney. The challenge won't be finding what you’re searching for, it will be resisting all the other beauties that catch your eye.
An ornate Chinese gateway at each end of pedestrianised Dixon Street in Haymarket marks your arrival at the heart of Sydney’s Chinatown – but don’t be fooled by the name. Sydney’s Chinatown – the largest in Australia – is in fact a melting pot of Asian cuisine and culture, with Korean, Thai, Malaysian, Vietnamese and Taiwanese eateries, bars and boutiques peppering this buzzing end of the city. Within Chinatown itself are micro-precincts Korea Town and Thai Town, and surrounding streets spill with pan-Asian restaurants and quirky, innovative businesses helmed by young Asian entrepreneurs. A bridge between treasured culinary traditions and modern, Asian-Australian innovation, Chinatown is so much more than a place to enjoy yum cha, Sichuan and hot pot – although you’ll find those in spades, too. Teeming with a contagious energy and endless eatery options – each more delicious than the last – Chinatown is a moreish manifestation of a city’s insatiable appetite for Asian cuisine.
Providing entertainment to the people of Sydney since the late 19th century, The historic Capitol Theatre, like Kimpton Margot, is a heritage-listed building of immense beauty. Just 500 metres from the hotel in Haymarket – also home to Chinatown – Capitol Theatre has hosted countless smash-hit musicals and ballets over the years. Hair, The Lion King, Wicked, Les Miserables, Fame, Aladdin, Swan Lake, Mamamia!, Priscilla, Queen of the Desert and Jersey Boys are just some of the hugely successful productions that have shown at this Sydney institution. Characteristic of the ‘atmospheric theatre’ style, which gives the impression that the audience is seated in an exotic open-air garden, the Capitol Theatre’s interior is a spectacle of whimsical decor and lavish architecture that make an evening here truly memorable – even before the performers tread the boards.
Sydney isn’t known as the ‘City of Villages’ for nothing. The inner-city suburb of Surry Hills is one of Sydney’s most well-known thanks to its village feel, trendy restaurants, cool boutiques and thriving cafe culture. Its main vein, Crown Street, which connects the dynamic LGBTQ+ suburb of Darlinghurst with edgy Redfern, is the beating heart of the neighbourhood, and where any Surry Hills reconnaissance ought to begin. Do some window-shopping at fashionable boutiques such as The Standard Store, Nique and Collector Store or bury your head in a book from one of the many independent booksellers. When it’s time for a breather, do as the locals do: take an outdoor seat at a cafe, order all-day breakfast and a cold drip coffee or green juice and simply watch the world go by.
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