May 27, 2022 | By Bronwen Largier

The new Ace Hotel opened in Surry Hills last week, bringing a fresh North American brand below the equator for the first time, while stakeholders turned the soil for the first 25Hours hotel in Australia in Paddington yesterday.

Ace Hotel Sydney opened mid last week with 257 rooms, including six suites, on Wentworth Avenue, near Central Station and the bustle of the Surry Hills restaurant and bar scene.

The hotel has taken over the hundred-plus-year-old Tyne building, constructed in 1916 but dormant for the decade before Ace found its Sydney home. A further eight floors have been added to 10 original floors during its conversion to a hotel.

The property has three dedicated events spaces on level one, with their names paying homage to the history of the site as home to one of Australia’s first kilns, which was discovered in the basement during construction of the hotel. Tyne and Clay can host 50 people each for cocktail events, while Brick can host 120 – or 180 when combined with Clay which adjoins it.

Ace Hotel Sydney’s largest event space

The three culinary offerings within the hotel – an all-day dining offering off the lobby called LOAM, Good Chemistry, which transforms from a laneway café to a laneway bar as the day progresses, and the more formal restaurant and bar Kiln on the top floor of the hotel, can also be hired for events. In addition, sections of Kiln, which has two open air terraces with retractable roofs, can be used for private dining, with views of the city.

Meanwhile, not far away, on Oxford Street in inner-east Paddington, the soil was ceremoniously turned yesterday on the site for the first 25hours hotel in Australia, set to open in 2023.

More on the boutique side of Accor’s brands, the lifestyle orientated offering will have 105 rooms as well as events space, a rooftop bar, destination restaurant and central garden courtyard.

The hotel continues the entertainment tradition for the building, which originally hosted one of Sydney’s first breweries in the 1800s, before it became a cinema for almost half a century. More recently the building was home to one of Sydney’s trendiest nightclubs, the Grand Pacific Blue Room, but has been largely unused over the past 10 years.

“This site holds great historical significance in the contribution to Paddington as one of Sydney’s world-renown and most-famous nightlife strips,” said Wayne Chivas, director of Central Element, the developer undertaking the conversion of the site.

“And with the commencement of construction on this project today, this site will now be transformed into a Social Hub and a space where global travellers and local guests can meet and form a dynamic and adventurous community.”

The soil turning also had the NSW Government’s 24-Hour Economy Commissioner Michael Rodrigues on hand, who praised the development as significant for the precinct and for Sydney.

“This development plays an important part in the future of Oxford Street and the future of the city.

“The 25hours Paddington, restaurants, bars, live performance and music space will add a new vibrancy and diversity to this precinct, creating a dynamic and adventurous community and draw international and local visitors to the city,” he said.

A representation of the final facade on the new 25Hours hotel in Paddington, Sydney