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Stay of the Week: Hotel Sorrento

Hotel Sorrento boasts five separate bars, two restaurants and newly refurbished accommodation rooms, with more to come later in the year.
By Ellen Seah
July 14, 2023
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By Ellen Seah
July 14, 2023
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In Stay of the Week, we explore some of the world's best and most unique accommodations, giving you inspiration for your next trip. In this instalment, we set the compass to regional Victoria and take a trip to Sorrento for a special stay at the newly renovated Hotel Sorrento. 

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Image: Rising High Media

WHAT'S SO SPECIAL?

Here, in a buzzy pocket of the Mornington Peninsula, Hotel Sorrento has sat for nearly 150 years boasting enviable bay vistas. Now, the historic sandstone building is welcoming a massive expansion including a soon-to-come 30-metre pool and rooftop yoga studio. At the moment, Hotel Sorrento boasts five separate bars, two restaurants, newly refurbished accommodation rooms as well as private dining areas. It's an all-in-one destination escape just over an hour from Melbourne's CBD.

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THE ROOMS

There are plenty of rooms to choose from at Hotel Sorrento, starting from $325 a night. Contemporary and light-filled, rooms are accented with a variety of deep European oak, natural limestone and marble. Heritage Balcony Rooms are the crowning jewel of this hotel, boasting private balconies with exclusive vistas overlooking the bay.

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Image: Threefold Social

FOOD AND DRINK

Hotel Sorrento has recently overhauled its food and drink offering, helmed by George Calombaris. "The goal is to create dishes that not only satisfy the palate but tell a story of the region and the community's rich history," George Calombaris says.

Shihuishi is the newest addition to the Hotel Sorrento family, nestled in the original, grand Hotel Sorrento ballroom. Head chef Junlin (Jerry) Yi (ex-Red Spice Road) is unafraid to stray from tradition, from prawn crackers paired with crème fraîche; to spanakopita dumplings that marry whipped feta and dill.

Deeper into the menu, patrons will discover Australian-Canto cuisine that nods to the Chinese restaurant that stood onsite back in the 1980s. A prawn, lap cheong and onion stir-fry is a crowd-pleaser, along with duck pancakes and black pepper beef, served on a sizzling plate. Other classics run to the likes of steamed barra with soy, ginger and spring onion, or the ever-popular pork and prawn shumai.

Otherwise, if you fancy a short but sweet wander, head across the road to the Conti for a slew of venues including a public bar, beer garden, speakeasy and fine diner. Luxe speakeasy Barlow is our pick for a pre-evening tipple. Sorrento institution Stringers has also recently been revamped by The Darling Group (Higher GroundKettle BlackTop Paddock), turning the corner store and cafe into an all-day restaurant, pizzeria, bar and providore.

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THE LOCAL AREA

Sorrento is a much-loved spot for both Mornington Peninsula locals and regular holiday blow-ins, due to its accessibility from Melbourne. In warmer months, swimming, snorkeling and water activities at Sorrento Beach is a must-do. If you're looking to sidestep the crowds, Diamond Bay is a popular spot for both families and couples.

A range of short, all-weather walking tracks are stunning year-around, including Coppins Track which finishes at the clifftop of Diamond Bay. The cliffside Millionaires Walk is named as a nod to the lavish private residences that line this path, or try the 7km Sorrento Circuit Walk, which hits all of this town's main attractions.

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THE EXTRAS

Hotel Sorrento is looking to install a new 30-metre pool alongside a pool-friendly bar, rooftop yoga studio and gym by the end of 2023. If you're looking for a staycation special, Hotel Sorrento's winter escape package includes overnight accommodation for two, dinner for two at Shuihuishi and a bottle of local Pinot Noir for your room.

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Feeling inspired to book a truly unique getaway? Head to Concrete Playground Trips to explore a range of holidays curated by our editorial team. We've teamed up with all the best providers of flightsstays and experiences to bring you a series of unforgettable trips in destinations all over the world.

Images: supplied.

Published on July 14, 2023 by Ellen Seah
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