Looking for a little solitude away from the hustle and bustle of Sydney? We’ve found just the place…
If you enjoy great wine, incredible food, a log fire, and scenic rooftop pools… then it doesn’t even really matter if you love horses, because the William Inglis Hotel is about so much more than its equestrian affiliation…
Inglis could be one of the names most closely associated with horses that Australia has ever seen – even the modern-day Waterhouse, Freedman or Cummings flocks haven’t yet become as synonymous with horse racing as the Inglis name.
Since 1867, the Inglis family has been associated with the horse racing world – particularly as auctioneers of horses – and as of today, that hasn’t changed. Now, there’s a five-star hotel celebrating equine culture and Australia’s long horse racing history.
The calm of the country, 40 minutes from the city
The former Randwick horse stables and auction house was moved out to Warwick Farm, around 40 minutes out of Sydney’s CBD, in January 2018. Having never ventured there before, I was instantly surprised at how tranquil and calm it felt once I was out there. I, like many, was under the impression that you had to venture at least two hours out of Sydney to find that kind of serenity.
The new, purpose-built stables and accompanying timber barn are to be used increasingly regularly when horse sales are hosted on the property several times throughout the year (though, the barn – and the grounds of the hotel – would be an incredible wedding space). These factors, teamed with the backdrop, which featured the expansive race track that seemed to go on forever, just made me feel as though I was out in the country.
Polished and rustic at the same time
The hotel is also as impressive as the grounds. Walking into the open plan lobby, you can’t help but take in the polished-yet-rustic nature of the hotel. It’s truly a home away from home, all smooth timbers and subtle rustic accents in the form of antique gold hanging lamps and wooden panelling on the roof – not a stark white wall in sight.
Speaking of sight, you may feel several pairs of eyes on you when you walk through the doors, and you’ll find it’s just one of the many stunning horse dedications featured around the hotel looking down upon you. Neigh need to worry…
Views from every angle
The rooms at the back of the hotel all look out to the race track – while the front rooms look out to expansive manicured front grounds, including the dirt road that takes you from the busy Hume highway to the doorway of this secret sanctuary. The contrast is almost unfathomable. On the right hand side of the hotel is a small beer garden, which extends from the hotel’s signature restaurant, Newmarket Room.
The secret rooftop pool
If you’re picturing a bikini-clad pool full of posers, then you’ve never seen a rooftop pool like this. Nestled just out to the right-hand side of the hotel, near the spa, you’ll find an almost secret rooftop haven (even though technically it’s not located on the top floor). The pool and the accompanying cabanas overlook the serene race track and is a special place to be in the early evening, with the warmth of the heated water and a sky full of stars above you. You might have to work to get a drink, though. This isn’t like in Las Vegas where waiters are swarming. When you’re up there, it’s pretty much your private haven, so be sure to call down for a vino in advance.
The food – oh, the food
Dinner at the Newmarket Room comes just after a pre-drink in the sophisticated whiskey bar, 1876 Lounge. Decked out in brown leather chairs and moody old New York-style lighting, it’s a great place for a quiet drink in a place where you can hear yourself think.
The food at the Newmarket Room is something to be celebrated – there’s no two ways about it. The steak was cooked to perfection, with some of the most delicious wedges you could imagine. The herbed butter delivered on top of the steak was the literal ‘icing’ on the cake (of steak).
The William Inglis Hotel MGallery by Sofitel
155 Governor Macquarie Drive, Warwick Farm, Sydney
From $151 per night.
Head to williaminglis.com.au to learn more.