Capella Sydney opens its doors

Capella Hotel Group debuts first Australian luxury hotel

After a seven-year restoration and renovation process, Capella Sydney has today [Wednesday 15 March 2023] opened to guests.

Occupying an entire city block just moments from Circular Quay, the Opera House and Harbour Bridge, the hotel welcomes guests to a benchmark destination of luxury accommodation, exceptional cuisine and cultural immersion.

As exclusively revealed by LATTE in mid-2019, Capella Sydney is housed within the Department of Education building, originally designed in the 1900s by NSW government architect George McRae. Forming part of the city’s prestigious Sandstone Precinct, the building has been meticulously restored and reimagined by Pontiac Land.

Capella Sydney, main entrance from Farrer Place | Credit: Timothy Kaye

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“Pontiac Land has always been passionate about creating meaningful developments that contribute and help shape their communities,” says David Tsang, Chief Executive Officer, Pontiac Land Group.

“Capella Sydney was an ideal opportunity for us to sensitively repurpose this culturally significant landmark in the heart of downtown Sydney and transform it into a more public offering as a leading luxury hotel for everyone to be able to experience. We are grateful for the support of the NSW government, and the City of Sydney in the achievement of our shared vision for Capella Sydney’s contribution towards a vibrant and rejuvenated Circular Quay precinct,” Tsang said.

Capella Sydney features 192 guestrooms and suites, arranged across nine levels. Representing the epitome of luxury, the guestrooms and suites are replete with deluxe textiles, standalone tubs and Italian Frette linen, carrying a custom pantone and a bespoke collection of vegan, sustainable in-room amenities designed in partnership with Haeckels.

Capella Sydney, Guestroom | Credit: Timothy Kaye

Cristiano Rinaldi, President of Capella Hotel Group, is pleased to introduce the Capella brand to Australia for the very first time. “The opening of Capella Sydney is a milestone moment in the company’s global expansion,” Rinaldi says.

Capella Sydney, front deck | Credit: Timothy Kaye

“This launch represents a significant opportunity for Capella to showcase its refined and curated offerings to Sydney and its visitors, and we look forward to amplifying the stories, culture and experiences of the city through a uniquely Capella lens,” he added.

Guests enter the hotel via the Farrer Place lobby where the arrival experience is heightened by the integration of acquired and commissioned art. The ground-floor collection includes works by the likes of Australian artists Judy Watson, Otis Hope Carey, Elise Cakebread and Georgia Bisley, culminating with a large robotic lighting installation by Dutch art duo DRIFT.

Titled Meadow, the installation by DRIFT is suspended in the hotel’s central gathering space. This lounge area, now known as Aperture, occupies the original courtyard of the old building – the fulcrum from which all the hotel’s amenities are accessed. This includes two other drink-and-dine venues: the landmark restaurant Brasserie 1930 and McRae Bar, both of which feature cuisine in collaboration with The Bentley Group.

Capella Sydney, Liberty Suite | Credit: Timothy Kaye

Staying in-house at Capella Sydney opens the doors to an exclusive world of luxury and cultural connection. On level six, guests are invited to indulge in rejuvenating treatments at Auriga Spa or swim in the 20-metre heated indoor pool, designed to provide the ultimate wellness experience in the heart of the city.

The Living Room, a signature space of all Capella properties, is the private ground-floor retreat for in-house guests. It’s also the place where the hotel’s culture and experience programs are conceptualised, facilitated by Culturists who are on-hand to shape the guest experience from pre-arrival to departure.

One such experience involves a two-hour storytelling tour of a bygone era. Guests who join the walking tour, which travels from the hotel to the laneways of The Rocks, will hear fascinating stories about the history of the Department of Education building, now Capella Sydney, the Sandstone Precinct in which it resides and the culture, crime and convicts that shaped the city.

Capella Sydney, McRae Bar | Credit: Timothy Kaye
Capella Sydney, Wellness Pool |Credit: Timothy Kaye

To celebrate the opening, Capella Sydney is offering this experience as part of the Capella History Journey which includes overnight accommodation in a deluxe guestroom for two guests priced at AU$1,500.

The Capella History Journey experience includes:

  • Daily breakfast for up to two people in Brasserie 1930
  • Bespoke welcome amenity upon arrival
  • Capella Culturist experience
  • 24-hour fitness centre
  • Complimentary access to the Living Room
  • Valet parking for one car

Capella History Journey is valid until 30 June 2023, subject to availability.


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