Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Short Version: The Blenheim: A Great Hotel Near the Sydney Airport

I did a great deal of research before booking this hotel. It is fairly close to the Sydney airport, located close to shopping and restaurants, and is clean and comfortable. The price is comparable or better to other hotels near the airport or downtown -- Sydney is just expensive at times, folks!

The best thing was the hotel's response to my request to check in early at 10AM -- they responded "No problem, we'll get the staff to clean the room early so you can check in early." That kind of hospitality is rare to find anywhere these days, and makes this place special.

A few notes: this is not a regular giant hotel. These are converted apartments. The reception area is very small. The hours are limited, something like 8am to 6pm on weekdays with a break from 12-2pm, and very limited on Sundays. If you arrive when the office is closed, a sign directs you to their sister property up the block. This will be a problem if you have a lot of luggage and have to either leave it or haul it all with you another block. I would advise calling the hotel if you are arriving anytime after 6PM to confirm their hours of reception.

The room is not huge, but it is perfectly adequate. The bathroom is the same -- not huge, but perfectly adequate. It was very clean. The air conditioning worked fine. There are three floors, but they do have an elevator to all floors.

I have a room facing High Street that some folks have complained about. The room has blinds that will completely block the light. There is some road noise, but it is not a problem. I am not bothered by noise; if you are more sensitive to noise, then ask for a room that is not facing High Street.

Just keep in mind that this is not an overpriced and overdone Westin or other luxury hotel. It’s an upscale boutique and quite good for the price.

The hotel is located in Randwick, only 3.4 miles from the airport, and close to Coogee Beach. A taxi will cost $25 to $30, according to the hotel. I found a shuttle called Eastern Suburbs Shuttle to take me to this hotel for $20. Few airport shuttles service the Eastern suburbs.

I was very impressed with the location and the hotel itself, and would definitely stay here again.

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