Rachel Bache checks in to Pier One Sydney Harbour.


Pier One is on the waterfront by the southern pylon of the Sydney Harbour Bridge, a 15-minute walk from Circular Quay.

Check-in experience: Wonderful. We were greeted at our taxi and our bags were taken care of. All the concierges were lovely and friendly, and we were even treated to a glass of bubbles on arrival.

Room: A deluxe suite on the ground floor with access to the harbour's pier, offering waterfront views.


Price: Prices range from around $300 to more than $1000 per night depending on the room.

What's so good about this place? It has a high-class feel and is very close to all the action.

And the bad? Being so close to that action, it doesn't feel especially private.

What's in the neighbourhood? The hotel is a couple of steps away from the Sydney Harbour Bridge, the Sydney Opera House is nearby, as are dozens of delicious restaurants, and it's on the doorstep of the Vivid Sydney festival, on in the city until June 18.

Toiletries: All the usual stuff - an abundance of soaps, shampoos and towels.

Food and drink: Pier One has its own restaurant and bar and offers breakfasts.

The bed: A luxurious king-sized bed that was perfect to drift off on after a day of exploring the city.

A room with a view? Not exactly. Being on the ground floor there are thin curtains and a wooden slate barrier for privacy, but once you step outside on to the pier, you're right on the harbour.

Bathroom: There was a large tiled bathroom with separate shower and bathtub and a stylish marbled sink. The shower had a little grime growing.

Free wi-fi? No. And $9.95 a day for basic or $19.95 a day for premium seems excessive.

Noise: On a busy night you can expect a lot of noise from the hallway, and from punters walking past outside; and when they're not there, the whistling wind from the harbour.

Room service: There's a room service breakfast menu and options for a daily turn-down of the room if you desire.

Value for money: Not bad. Not the best.

Exercise facilities: Yes. A few treadmills and other machines. The gym has a better view of the harbour than the ground-level rooms.

Contact: pieronesydneyharbour.com.au
Perfect for: Couples wanting to check out the Vivid Festival, being right in the heart of the city and just a short walk from all the art, food and music. But maybe leave the kids at home.