The Fullerton Hotel Sydney opens in 90 days’ time. Here’s what to expect
The 416-key property is the homegrown hotel group’s first international location. Homesick Singaporeans can look forward to local favourites such as chicken rice, char kway teow, laksa and satay as part of the hotel's dining offer.
Singapore’s Fullerton Hotels and Resorts announced on Thursday (Jul 18) that The Fullerton Hotel Sydney is on track to open in 90 days’ time, on Oct 18, 2019.
The property at 1 Martin Place – smack in the middle of the CBD and a short stroll from attractions like the Sydney Opera House, Harbour Bridge and the vibrant enclave of Barangaroo – was home to The Westin Sydney for more than two decades. It occupies a modern high-rise as well as the city’s historic General Post Office (GPO), a heritage-listed building constructed in 1874.
This aspect is what the Sydney hotel has in common with its Singaporean counterpart: The Fullerton Building once housed the GPO (and later, Singapore Post) from 1928 until 1996. In 1997, Hong Kong-based Sino Land Company Limited, a sister company of Far East Organisation, pumped in S$300 million to redevelop Fullerton Building into The Fullerton Hotel and construct the One Fullerton complex.
When asked how much was spent to refurbish the Sydney property, Cavaliere Giovanni Viterale, General Manager of The Fullerton Hotels and Resorts told CNA Luxury: "At the moment, we don't have an estimation of the cost. It depends on how the work progresses. We’re only [working on restoring the facades of] George Street and Martin Place [for now]."
Restoration works on the building's sandstone exterior, which features neoclassical sculptures and motifs, began in early April. Its third facade on Pitt Street will be restored in the near future, Viterale added.
According to a press statement, the laborious chemical-free cleaning process is estimated to take more than 38,000 working hours, and is carried out by trained specialists who use steam, water and scrubbing brushes to remove accumulated layers of dirt without altering the sandstone’s natural patina. This is done to preserve the building’s integrity and showcase its beauty.
When the hotel opens on Oct 18, guests can choose to stay in one of two types of accommodation: Heritage rooms that are located in the GPO building, or contemporary rooms in the high-rise tower. Viterale said that there are 52 heritage rooms, while the rest are contemporary.
"[In Singapore] we have the Fullerton and Fullerton Bay, which gives this amazing combination of classic and modern, and [in Sydney] it’s actually very similar: You have the heritage side and [the modern side, and] when you combine the two, it really mirrors the Singapore properties," he added.
And while nearby dining options are aplenty, a meal at the hotel’s signature restaurant, The Place, is a must: Located at level one, the restaurant is bathed in natural light from the glass atrium – much like The Courtyard in Fullerton Singapore. Of the name, Viterale explained: "[It's] The Place to be, The Place to try new things. Of course we will have all the signature dishes too. Those will remain. We will definitely have satay, chicken rice, laksa, char kway teow – all the items that people are accustomed to. And our signature Fullerton Sling, which will be called the Sydney Sling."
And good news for fans of the Fullerton brand as well as those who shuttle back and forth between Singapore and Sydney: There are plans for a loyalty programme. "We will reveal it very soon – next month," said Viterale.