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Monday, May 28, 2018

New inner city hotel for Sydney - The Collectionist

Sydney’s first custom design hotel – The Collectionist – has officially opened, ready to change the way guests choose to stay and experience hotels.

Located in Sydney’s inner-city Camperdown precinct, it heralds the launch of The Collectionist Hotel brand with plans to take the unique concept to other Sydney locations and interstate.

Described as a real-life “choose-your-own-adventure”, the eclectically designed hotel will set a new standard in individualised guest experiences. Opting away from standardised décor in rooms, The Collectionist commissioned the talents of seven designers from four leading design studios, and 13 artists, to create 39 individually designed rooms and lobby space. Instead of rooms being allocated, guests are invited to peruse available rooms on check-in and choose their room based on the style, colour, texture and design - just as they would a work of art.

This is a revolutionary change to the traditional hotel check-in process, where rooms are pre-allocated; and to room design, where the variety is limited. The Collectionist’s digital booking process is carried through at check-in with access codes to rooms communicated via email and SMS. However, the personal touch remains an important element with social drinks hosted by a bartender between 4pm and 8pm.

“We have purposely set about creating rooms that will challenge the ‘norms’ on hotel room design,” says Daniel Symonds, CEO & Co-Founder of Collectic Hotels, who headed up the development.

“We are expecting divided opinions on some of the designs but we are confident that everyone will find a room that appeals to them.”

In recognition of the unique design of each room, they have been given imaginative names that reflect the room’s ambience. Guests can choose to stay in the 'La Chambre Noir'; the 'Queenie Fah Fah'; the 'Cloud Runner' or the 'Kyoko' rooms, for example, each with their own unique story to tell.

Rooms are grouped in four categories based on their size and whether an outdoor space is included. The categories include:

  • The Bootstrap - from $200 per night
  • The Tinkerer – from $220 per night
  • The Moonshiner – from $240 per night
  • The Artisan – from $260 per night

Bookings and further information available at

The ‘choose your own’ experience that Daniel Symonds has made available at The Collectionist Hotel was Inspired by a car-hire experience in the US - which allowed an up-close inspection on a variety of cars at pick-up and the choice of the style of car he hired, right down to the colour. Symonds was impressed by the flexibility, choice and control it gave him, which led him to question why hotels couldn’t operate the same way.

Symonds says: “I realised that people are very particular about the car they drive, the colour they choose, the style they want. It’s a very personal choice, so why didn’t we make hotel rooms that catered to these different tastes rather than offering standardised rooms and no choice in the room type a guest prefers? By providing guests with a more tactile way of choosing their room, they are directly involved in their stay experience.”

The design teams credited with bringing The Collectionist concept to life include Andrew Cliffe from The World is Round; Yasmine Ghoniem and Katy Svalbe from Amber Road; Susie Willis and Matt Sheargold from Willis Sheargold; and Josh Cain and Lily Goodwin from Pattern Studio; while the overall construction is being managed by Unita.

Daniel Symonds and business partner, Toby Raphael, are also responsible for the pop-up accommodation concept, FreeSpace - which utilises vacant rooms on university campuses in peak periods and revamps them as quality accommodation. Freespaces was named in the AFR's Fast 100 List in 2017. They were also behind the rejuvenation of the old Newtown RSL building which has now been converted into The Urban Newtown hotel.

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