Sometimes, you just don’t have the time (or the energy) to pack your bags and head off on a weekender. Maybe you’ve got far too many events lined up for the forseeable future (me, hello). Maybe it’s just that you want to do something fancy, but CBF moving more than 30 minutes away from your actual home.

Staycations are having a revival thanks to a bunch of chic hotels that are offering fancy times right in your home city. And honestly – how many of us can say they’ve even played tourist in the place we live/work?

Whether you want an overnighter with your s.o that’s more romantic than your room in your share house, or feel like hitting the bars with mates and having the comfiest bed in existence a stones throw away, we hit up some extremely fab hotels in our home cities to let you know what the fuss is about.

THE OLD CLARE, SYDNEY

The Old Clare is perfectly situated right on the edge of the city, so you get the best of all worlds – you’re near all the fun, touristy attractions like Centrepoint, but you’re also extremely close to cooler spots like Glebe, Chippendale and Newtown.

Space-wise, The Old Clare is all about refurbed vintage vibes – the rooms keep a lot of their original decor, but mix it with primo bed linen, chic furnishings and all the mod cons. Bonus? There’s an epic rooftop pool, and you can borrow bikes to whiz around the neighbourhood.

OUR TAKE : “The Old Clare was a real kick for a girl like me who loves anything old-timey. I stayed in the Connell Room, which has a huge comfy bed and a shower, er, right in the middle of the room. So if you’re staying there with a platonic friend rather than your bf/gf, you’ll have to shut your eyes unless you want a free show. There’s loads of amazing food/drink options right near the Old Clare, and next door is the Central Park shopping complex, so my partner and I splashed out on a Palace Platinum movie sesh, which was like Gold Class but even more luxe – trust me when I tell you the cheese plate was next level.” – Josie, Head Of Editorial.

THE DARLING, SYDNEY

The Darling is part of Sydney’s The Star complex, so you’re right above the casino, tons of excellent restaurants (we hit up Black Bar & Grill and trust us when we say it was the best steak of our lives) and Marquee nightclub. This is the place to stay with a mate or two for a splurgy Sat night.

OUR TAKE: “I stayed in a Stellar Suite, and it was HUGE. Everything giant – massive lounge room with massive floor-to-ceiling windows, insanely big, soft bed and walk-in shower situation with those massage jets. I felt like Leonardo Di Caprio.” – Mel, Senior Style Editor.

PIER ONE, SYDNEY

Pier One is where you go when you really wanna get into the Sydney tourist vibes. It’s literally underneath the Harbour Bridge. Look at that view! From an egg bath, no less! Plus, up until the end of Feb they have a sweet little pontoon and ocean pool happening, and it’s extremely Instagram-worthy.

OUR TAKE: Staying at Pier One was a lot of fun, because despite the fact I’ve lived in Sydney most of my life, I rarely get around to that corner of The Rocks. I reckon I spent at least an hour or two of my stay just looking out at Sydney Harbour, an activity made all the more pleasant by the fact that the room was very, very comfortable. It’s a very luxe way to get a new perspective on your city.” – James, Deputy Editor.

COCKATOO ISLAND GLAMPING, SYDNEY

If you’ve ever dreamt of waking up next to the water, then a stay on Sydney’s Cockatoo Island is your best bet. While the accommodation itself isn’t the most luxe version of glamping, the camp beds are comfy and there’s reclining camp chairs that you can set up and watch the sunset dip over Drummoyne and Birkenhead Point to the west.
OUR TAKE: “I loved how the island itself is rich with history – the audio tours are a lot of fun to do at night, although we absolutely spooked ourselves with tales of prisoners barracks and old hospital. Speaking of, they run movies in there each night, if you’re looking for something less terrifying to do.”Courtney, News Writer.
This city-based hotel is perfect if you want to be able to walk to any/all Sydney attractions during your staycation. It’s definitely more of a serious vibe, but they defs haven’t scrimped on luxury – the hotel is designed to give you maximum relaxation vibes. And if nothing else, you need to see the rooftop pool.
OUR TAKE: Primus is right in the heart of the city, but you wouldn’t know that once you get to the rooftop pool and bar. It’s like, hello all the tiny people down below, I’m just up here drinking bubbly, thanks. There’s an industrial-chic vibe that (yeah I KNOW this is not the point) makes for a great Instagram. As for the room itself? Trust me and jump straight in the bath.” – Alex, Associate News Editor.
First up – there’s nothing more to say here really besides the fact that Ravesis is smack-bang on Bondi Beach. Like, would take you 2 whole minutes to walk across to the water. Okay, there’s a bit more to say – the iconic hotel has had a chic refurb, going for a cool 60’s Palm Springs feel
OUR TAKE: I loved the look and feel of Ravesis – it was so old-school Hollywood with the green and pink interiors. It also blended in with the sunset and sunrise, which we could see from our room. Everything was considered, from a Marshall speaker to niche VanessaMegan bath products.” Kristy, Project Manager.
Not too long ago if you told someone you were staying for a night in Kings Cross your more then likely response would be an “Ew why?”. Whilst the recent evolution of the once infamous party precinct has been controversial to say the least there’s still a healthy heartbeat reverberating through Potts Point and Darlinghurst that is simply begging to be joined. The Larmont is one of the newer boutique hotels in Sydney, situated smack bang in the middle of everything – there’s a huge range of dining and drinking options, many with harbour and city views to die for.
OUR TAKE:  “If you or your partner are a bath fiend (as my boyfriend is) an upgrade to one of the Larmont signature suites is a must, with a huge bath tub INSIDE the bedroom one of the more luxe experiences I’ve had.” – Mitch, News Writer.

ST JEROME’S – THE HOTEL, MELBOURNE

Glamping? In the middle of the city? Yep, it exists in the form of St Jerome’s – The Hotel, which features a boutique set of luxury tents situated on a rooftop. This is millennial holidaying at it’s peak – and it’s perfect if your idea of luxury is amazing views, chic furnishings, and drinking craft beer while playing boules.

OUR TAKE: “The last time I legitimately went camping, I ran out of food halfway through and copped a life-alterning sunburn. While it is technically a tent, The Lodge at St. Jerome’s Hotel was a far sight more comfortable: a lush bed, complimentary cocktails and a huge breakfast hamper delivered in the morning.” – David, News Editor.

THE BLACKMAN, MELBOURNE

Situated right on St Kilda Rd, The Blackman took out the Best Superior Accommodation award for 2017 at the Victorian TAA Awards, and with good reason. It’s geared around the art of Charles Blackman, and his works adorn the walls throughout the hotel, along with quirky boutique interiors and designer furnishings.

OUR TAKE: The Blackman’s pretty ideal if you’re keen on feeling like you’re kipping in the bedroom of a very rich person. Giant artworks are dotted throughout the joint, the giant bed sleeps like a cloud and the room’s nifty little balcony would’ve been a super nice spot to chill had Melbourne not decided to piss itself with rain the whole night. It’s comfy as hell there, super quiet, and in a pretty ideal location.”Cam, Senior News Editor.

TRYP HOTEL, BRISBANE

Tryp is an extremely cool hotel situated in the middle of the entertainment/nightlife district of Fortitude Valley. It’s not designed to be cosy – the artwork is loud and captivating -each floor of the hyper-modern building is adorned with art from a different Australian street artist, like Fintan Magee, Rone, Numskull and Beastman – and the rooms feature bright, modern furnishings and mood lighting. Two rooms feature internal spas, and one has an outdoor private spa – extremely lush.

OUR TAKE: “TRYP is like a super comfy, pocket-sized art gallery. Each floor of the hyper-modern building is adorned with art, from psychedelic colour explosions to hyperrealist portraits. My room came with a wee courtyard, and all the glass and coloured perspex adds up to some extremely chill Blade Runner 2049 vibes. Not bad imho.” – Sam, Afternoon/Nights Writer.

THE JOHNSON, BRISBANE

This hotel is based in Spring Hill, meaning you’re juuust outside of the city, but close enough to walk on in. There’s cute cafes down the road, and the hotel has a sweet 50 metre pool with sundeck that’s perfect for lounging around in. Also? The rooms are massive.

OUR TAKE: “My room was so quiet you could hear a pin drop – I can’t remember the last time I had such a good night’s sleep. Most likely because my bed was the size of a small planet.” – Mel, Senior Style Editor.

Image: The Old Clare