Babymoon Bliss – Shangri-La Hotel Sydney

As the due date loomed for the birth of our baby, I was desperate to have a weekend away with Mr 77 before our lives changed forever.

Views from the Shangri-La Hotel – Image courtesy of the Shangri-La Hotel Sydney website

I wanted a relaxing last child free hurrah with serious down time to escape our busy life. Somewhere we could eat, sleep and luxuriate before bubs came along. With late pregnancy health concerns and a growing realisation we would soon be down to one income, it also had to be affordable (read cheap).

A budget babymoon if you will.

After hours scouring the Internet for deals within a 2 hour radius of Sydney, I was lumbered with a no fly restriction. Skyrocketing blood pressure made our Dr order us to stay close to home. I was limited to a city based babymoon.

There are many 5 star hotels in Sydney, each has something unique to offer. For our babymoon I wanted luxurious, water views to watch the sun rise (I was waking ridiculously early). It had to be affordable, friendly, have great restaurants close by and a great day spa or pool.

I settled on the Shangri-La Hotel as it ticked most of the boxes. A Sydney icon, famous for its stylish cocktail bar, award winning day spa and restaurant and of course the spectacular views. The hotel has built a reputation on warm welcoming hospitality and prides itself on affordable luxury.

We booked a Deluxe Grand Harbour view room with a King bed to accommodate my burgeoning size. The booking was easy and the staff at check in were incredibly efficient, friendly and polite.

Deluxe Grand Harbour View Room – Image courtesy of the Shangri-La Hotel Sydney website



Deluxe Grand Harbour View Room 

Deluxe Grand Harbour View Room

 

The first thing you notice about the room is the generous size. There is ample space and the large windows allow you to gaze at the beautiful harbour views. The online pictures don’t do it justice.

Views from the Deluxe Grand Harbour View Room
 
The decor nods at the hotels Singapore beginnings. Lush silks, plush fabrics and oriental flower detailing on the carpets. The colour scheme is quite masculine and is beginning to feel a little outdated. The view is the centrepiece however and you quickly forget all else.

It should be noted that the hotel has had an $8 million revamp and there are 90 newly refurbished hotel rooms and suites. If you want absolute luxury be sure to ask for A Shangri-La Sydney Horizon Club room. They aren’t for the budget conscious at $510/night but they are new and luxurious.

A refurbished Shangri-La Sydney Horizon Club room – Image courtesy of the Shangri-La Hotel Sydney website

 

The oversized marble bathrooms in the Deluxe Grand Harbour view are lovely, with marble tiles, a large vanity, separate bath and shower and room to swing 3 cats. It is a great space to pamper yourself. There are plenty of plush Shangri-La towels and bathrobes to cater for a weekend of lounging, reading and relaxing.

Deluxe Grand Harbour View Room Bathroom

Deluxe Grand Harbour View Room Bathroom
 
It’s winter so we decide on spending the day enjoying the facilities. I am reduced to waddling and being such a cumbersome size, the thought of walking around the city makes me feel exhausted. If you aren’t carrying another human around, the hotel sits right at the top of the Rocks, so it is close to public transport and all the major attractions such as the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Opera House. The QVB, Pitt Street mall, Hyde Park, Darling Harbour, Barangaroo, Botanic Gardens, Art Gallery, ferries to Manly and Watsons Bay and Darling Harbour are all at your doorstep.

Views from the Deluxe Grand Harbour View Room

 

A babymoon would not be complete without a spa treatment. I’ve booked us into the CHI spa whose treatments focus on traditional Asian healing techniques. The Sodashi products are chemical free, based on plants essences, herbs, marine algae extracts so are perfect for bubs.

CHI Spa – Image courtesy of the Shangri-La Hotel Sydney website

 

Because of the late stage of my pregnancy, I go for the relaxing herbal bath, pregnancy massage and facial.
 
In my travels I have been very lucky to have had spa treatments around the world. I can say without a doubt that this was the most luxurious, relaxing and blissful experience I have had. Whether it was the bath, the pregnancy or the expertise of the therapist, I was blissed out for the whole treatment.
 
Afterward we float down to high tea in the lobby Lounge & Terrace. Between 11:30am-5pm, for the price of $45pp (basic package) you can indulge in savoury bites and sweet treats by Award winning Pastry Chef Anna Polyviou. It’s simply delicious and the atmosphere is relaxed and happy.

High Tea – Image courtesy of the Shangri-La Hotel Sydney website



Award wining Pastry Chef Anna Polyviou – Image courtesy of the Shangri-La Hotel Sydney website

 
The treatment and food have made us sleepy so we sneak back to the room for an afternoon nap and enjoy the blissful hushed silence that only hotel rooms provide. No traffic, planes, noisy neighbours, barking dogs or neighbourhood parties. Just sweet silent bliss.

Later we glam it up and hit the Blue Bar on 36 for sunset views and drinks (mocktail for me). It is a sophisticated and luxurious cocktail bar with stunning views overlooking a spectacular Sydney sunset and harbour. The cocktails are clever, with modern twists on old classics and there is decent menu to wade through. Be warned though, there is a dress code so you need to dress up.

Cocktails with a view – Image courtesy of the Shangri-La Hotel Sydney website

 
Our next stop is a hop skip and jump away with a fine dining experience at the Altitude Restaurant. The modern Australian menu has interesting twists without being over the top. Altitude has a 3 Hat Rating in Gault & Millau and 3 Goblets rating from Gourmet Traveller Wine magazine. We select the Four Course Menu, crafted from seasonal fare and reasonably priced at $135 pp. My premium Black Angus Strip loin with roasted onion and garlic puree, fresh radish, caramelized onion just melts in the mouth.

The floor to ceiling windows offer amazing views, the service is attentive and the food is faultless. Everything is sublime and worth the expense.

Full and happy, we head back to our room and collapse into a deep sleep on the comfy bed.

The following morning I wake to watch the sunrise in a fluffy bathrobe, tea in hand and in the warmth of our room. As the golden rays peak over the Opera House I am at peace and feel recharged to tackle whatever the future brings.

We have a morning swim at the pool. It was the only thing about the hotel that was disappointing. The website photos look amazing and the pool is nice and functional, being indoors and heated is a plus in winter, but I can’t help but think it could have been spectacular. Outdoor, heated, perched on the rooftop or indoors with sweeping city views. I guess you can’t have everything !

Shangri-La Pool – Image courtesy of the Shangri-La Hotel Sydney website

 

Finally, before check out, we enjoy a long lazy breakfast at the buffet. It is standard breakfast fare with assortments of fresh fruits, yogurt, cereal, eggs, bacon, mushrooms, soups, croissants, pastries and muffins. Staff bring you your preferred coffee/tea and plates are whisked away quickly once empty.

Breakfast at the Shangri-La Hotel – Image courtesy of the Shangri-La Hotel Sydney website

 

So if you are nervous about travelling overseas or interstate or don’t want to be too far away in case of a premature labour. If you want something that is affordable with stunning harbour views yet has a little luxury, look no further than the Shangri-La Hotel for complete Babymoon Bliss.

Why Go ? The views, the food, cocktails with a view, master chef designed high-teas and blissful day spa.

Where? 176 Cumberland Street, The Rocks, Sydney, NSW 2000, Australia


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