You are here
A new chapter unfolds today for The Fullerton Hotel Sydney, where heritage meets luxury
Great hotels — like all great trips — should involve a journey and a story to tell.
In Sydney, this begins with a former General Post Office (GPO).
"Meet you on the steps of the GPO", was a phrase that echoed all around Sydney years ago, as Sydneysiders in the Australian city converged and met under the GPO clock.
Constructed in 1866, the post office was a towering sandstone building that defined the city's streetscape and skyline for decades. It was a common rendezvous point for Sydneysiders, serving as a landmark in a metropolis that hummed with activity and energy.
Former parcel sorter Trevor Somerville recalls the hectic pre-Christmas rush that used to sweep through the GPO during the festive season in the mid-1950s. With no postcode system in place then, he had to sort piles of mail relying on naught but his memory of suburb names and locations. Former telephonist Gloria Cochrane was no stranger to the fast pace of work at the GPO either. However, it is the hushed, intimate moments that she remembers fondly. When the hustle and bustle petered out late at night during quieter shifts, she would observe her fellow operators chatting with local police and sailors, meeting their significant others and navigating the early experiences of a budding relationship.
Mr Trevor Somerville was a parcel sorter in the mid-1950s and fondly remembers his time at the Sydney General Post Office. Photo: The Fullerton Hotel Sydney
While the letters, parcels, telephone calls and chatter of those who once worked at the busy GPO have ceased, the building’s vibrant character lives on — with a new chapter as The Fullerton Hotel Sydney.
Once upon a general post office
The 416-key property marks The Fullerton Hotels and Resorts’ first international brand expansion beyond Singapore.
"As we reflect on the legacy of Sydney's former General Post Office, we also look forward to the future of creating new Fullerton memories and experiences for Sydneysiders and international visitors," says Cavaliere Giovanni Viterale, General Manager of The Fullerton Hotels and Resorts. "We are excited to deliver a luxury hotel that will act a gateway to local culture and history. Our guests will experience a home away from home accompanied by a range of dynamic dining and lifestyle entertainment choices."
The Fullerton Hotel Sydney joins the group's award-winning collection of luxury hotels, The Fullerton Hotel Singapore and The Fullerton Bay Hotel Singapore.
Known for their premium levels of service and coveted views overlooking the Singapore River and Marina Bay, the two hotels recently clinched top spots in Singapore's TripAdvisor hotel rankings. The group was also recognised as "Best Independent Hotel Brand" in the Business Traveller Asia-Pacific Awards 2019 last month.
At The Fullerton Hotel Sydney, guests can retreat to 50 charming heritage rooms within the historic GPO building, equipped with a range of luxurious amenities and plush bedding. Or opt to retire to the high-rise Tower wing with contemporary designed accommodation.
The executive room (pictured) in the high-rise Tower wing is equipped with plush bedding, luxurious amenities and offers breathtaking views of the city. Photo: The Fullerton Hotel Sydney
From the first weekend of November, you can also experience the vibrant history of the building through complimentary heritage tours led by a resident tour guide. Step further into the past with a closer look at the intricate stone works of the former GPO, which reveals carvings of everyday life depicting the Postmaster General flirtatiously delivering a letter to a barmaid, an astronomer marking Sydney’s position on a globe and a digger happily pointing to a chunk of quartz and gold.
A tale of delicious flavours and cherished memories
At The Fullerton Hotel Sydney, getting a taste of history need not be limited to the former GPO’s architecture.
In the summer of 1953, Mr Somerville entered the Sydney GPO’s canteen for the very first time. Digging into his meal, he couldn’t help but notice that the premises were reminiscent of a restaurant or bar. For someone who had never eaten in a restaurant, this became a particularly precious memory of his time serving in the GPO.
Embark on a gastronomic journey at The Place, a restaurant specialising in Modern Australian cuisine and Southeast Asian flavours. Photo: The Fullerton Hotel Sydney
Today, guests of The Fullerton Hotel Sydney will also get to enjoy their very own gastronomic encounter in the former GPO. Navigating the wide, sunlit expanse of the property, they too, will be immersed in a storied past while enjoying their dining experience in the Hotel.
Located in the atrium is a restaurant specialising in Modern Australian cuisine such as Pan-seared Red Emperor and Tajima Wagyu Sirloin, and South-east Asian flavours. Settle into the plush seats of The Place and expect to be delighted by bold flavours from signatures dishes such as Chicken Rice and Seafood Laksa.
Sip on the refreshing and fruity Sydney Sling as you wind down at The Bar. Photo: The Fullerton Hotel Sydney
The Bar, on the other hand, offers a quiet respite from the buzz of the city, where you can luxuriate as the day comes to a close. At this chic and contemporary venue, take a walk on the wild side and try one of the creative cocktails, such as the Sydney Sling — which takes reference from the famed Singapore Sling — infused with spirits and flavours from Australia. Tucked away in a cosy, private corner of the building, this intimate setting could well be the start of deep and heartfelt conversations. Who knows? Love may blossom here, too.
The relaxed atmosphere also makes this an ideal place for catching up with travel companions over the signature Fullerton Afternoon Tea. Indulge in a selection of savoury sandwiches and other tasty nibbles including Pandan Lamingtons as you exchange tales and stories of city escapades.
The signature Fullerton Afternoon Tea features delightful bite-sized nibbles that pairs beautifully with your choice of TWG tea blends, cocktail or even champagne. Photo: The Fullerton Hotel Sydney
Embark on a Fullerton journey
One’s journey of discovery doesn’t have to end within the hotel. Step out, soak in the lively atmosphere and embrace all that the city has to offer. The Fullerton Hotel Sydney is minutes away from top attractions such as the Sydney Harbour Bridge, Sydney Opera House and The Rocks, offering a convenient gateway to some of the best sights in the area.
When the trip draws to a close, rediscover the simple joy of writing a note to loved ones. Enjoy the romance of letter writing as you pen a note on complimentary postcards affixed with Fullerton stamps available in each guestroom on opening day, and drop them off in an old-school red postal pillar box. And where else to do so than within the former GPO that once connected Sydney through telegram, phone calls and letters to the world beyond, in a hotel where stories are born.