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Sydney's Soon-to-Open W Hotel Has Unveiled Its Restaurant, Cocktail Bar and Dessert Haven BTWN

BTWN will arrive with a produce-driven all-day diner, a luxurious space for after-work and weekend drinks, and a dessert bar from one of the world's most acclaimed pastry chefs.
By Ben Hansen and Jasmine Crittenden
July 19, 2023
By Ben Hansen and Jasmine Crittenden
July 19, 2023

Five years in the making, W Hotel's luxury Darling Harbour development will finally bring the global hotel chain back to Sydney in October this year. Originally scheduled to open in 2020, the unmistakable harbourfront hotel has faced several delays and setbacks, but will finally swing its doors open in three months' time — and it has just revealed the next-level dining options that are in store for Sydneysiders and guests alike.

The flagship restaurant and bar for the hotel will be called BTWN, playing on the building being wedged between its neighbouring expressways. This ambitious all-day eatery's kitchen is led by Head Chef Chris Dodd (ex-Aria, The Blue Door and Bistrot Plume), whose menu places emphasis on sustainability and local New South Wales produce. Hotel breakfasts and hearty dinners will be available here, with expected highlights from the mains menu including poached Murray cod, slow-cooked yoghurt-rubbed lamb shoulder and mushroom ragout.

The level-three restaurant can be seen from the adjacent highway, acting as a living, breathing billboard for the hotel. Inside, designer Bowler James Brindley uses urban hallmarks and a slick chrome fitout inspired by airstream food trucks to celebrate the hotel's place in the heart of the city.

Come sundown, a one-of-a-kind dessert bar labelled 2AM will open inside BTWN. Acclaimed Singaporean dessert chef Janice Wong is in charge of this venue within a venue — her first permanent outpost in Australia. Wong has twice been named Asia's best pastry chef on The World's Best Restaurants list, and runs restaurants and dessert bars across Singapore, London, Korea and Tokyo.

The accomplished lover of all things decadent has crafted a menu that will appeal to both sweet tooths and more conservative dessert-enjoyers — and one that is designed to pair with BTWN's wine list and custom cocktails. 2AM's cacao forest is created using chocolate mousse, passionfruit chocolate, and consommé made from mango, lime and lychee. Or, there's the cassis plum, which places a bombe with yuzu pearls on top of elderflower yoghurt foam and choya granita.

Rounding out the offerings at the sleek inner-city venue is the cocktail bar, which will keep things rolling from midday till late with a meticulously designed drinks list and sweeping views of Darling Harbour.

Located within The Ribbon, the multimillion-dollar development has been designed by HASSEL architects and sits on the former IMAX theatre site (don't worry, the new IMAX is scheduled to also reopen this year). Outside of the dining options, W Sydney's drawcards include 585 stunning rooms and suites, plus exuberant shared spaces throughout the hotel including a heated rooftop infinity pool overlooking the water, a luxury spa and a gym.

If you want to be one of the first to stay in the massive Darling Harbour accommodation, bookings are now open for stays starting from Wednesday, November 1.

Janice Wong

W Sydney will open its doors in October 2023 at 31 Wheat Road, Darling Harbour — head to thee Darling Harbour website for further details.

Published on July 19, 2023 by Ben Hansen
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