'I just had a staycation 10 minutes' drive from my house.'

Unpopular opinion: staycations are the superior form of holiday. 

It’s the only method of complete relaxation for me. There’s no stressing about forgetting your passport, constantly thinking if you packed everything, wondering what to do with your time (obviously nothing). It's absolute bliss. 

Staycations also don’t have to be long. My favourite type is just one night. One night to escape from my mundane chores of stacking the dishwasher, putting clothes away and figuring out what to cook for dinner - without spending big money.  

I recently had a mini staycation at the Novotel Sydney City Centre

This Novotel had recently undergone a $20 million refurbishment with a focus on sustainability and an elevated guest experience. 

The first thing I did when I got there was the first thing everyone does - dramatically fall onto the bed. I’m also one of those kind of hotel people who put on the bathrobes for no particular reason. 

Bed? Laid in. Robe? On. 

I was lucky enough to score a balcony room which was my favourite aspect of my little suite. The balcony was so big and had a beautiful outdoor lounge. 

I was surprised that a hotel room in the heart of Sydney’s CBD could accommodate so much space. It made me regret not inviting my girlfriends over because it was the perfect spot for cocktails and giggles while overlooking the busy city down below... But that would’ve gone against my staycation agenda: to do as little as possible. 


Big balcony = big vibes.


The best bit was also something that's largely underrated when it comes to hotel stays - their in-house restaurants.

The Novotel has debuted a brand new restaurant and it is lush. Birdie Bar and Brasserie’s Head Chef is John Lyons, and I was lucky enough to meet him and listen to him explain the inspiration behind each dish. 

The restaurant is the perfect standalone for dinner dates and the British and Australian-influenced menu accommodates everyone.  

Some of the incredible dishes at the Birdie Bar and Brasserie


I’m a big fan of solo dinners, which I know can be intimidating for most people but hotel restaurants are the best place to have them. 

There are so many people travelling for business so you won’t be the only person dining alone. 

Solo dinners also mean you can eat whatever you want and just enjoy your own time and space. 

Choosing to do a staycation in the CBD is also super handy because you have everything at your doorstep. Craving a pizza? Dominos is across the road. Want to travel around the city? Wynyard station is also across the road. Want to lounge in the park with a book? Yep, you guessed it - across the road. 

A professional staycater in her natural habitat 


After my mini staycation, I returned home feeling relaxed and nurtured - and actually excited for the week ahead. 

While it might not seem as exciting as jetting off to some far-flung destination, getting to experience your own city as if you're a tourist gives you a whole new perspective. And you won't have jetlag, so win-win. 

Mamamia travelled as a guest of Novotel Sydney City Centre. All opinions expressed in this article are the author's own.

If you want more culture opinions from Emily Vernem you can follow her on Instagram @emilyvernem.

Feature image: Supplied

As one of our readers we want to hear from you! Complete this survey now to go in the running to win a $100 gift voucher.