Describe your perfect Sydney day.
By starting with an early bicycle ride under a clear sunny sky and light traffic conditions with my cycling group. Seeing a movie at Dendy Opera Quays with my partner, followed by a walk—one of our favourites is up Argyle Street in The Rocks to Barangaroo Reserve before meandering back alongside the historic wharves and buildings of Walsh Bay. If I can finish the day off with a simple, home-cooked meal, I’ll go to bed happy that night!
What’s your favourite thing about Sydney at Christmas?
Having a traditional (hot) Christmas lunch with family—and you can never eat enough pavlova on Christmas Day!
Where should visitors go to find unique Sydney Christmas gifts?
The Art Gallery of NSW always stocks interesting gifts but the Christmas decorations for sale as part of the current “Masters of Modern Art from the Hermitage” exhibition are quite exquisite. There're also some beautiful Aboriginal Christmas decorations in the Oxfam Store at Westfield Sydney.
What’s on the top of your wish list this year?
I’m going with world peace—if that doesn’t fly, then to finish the training project I am currently working on as a member of the Les Clefs d’Or International Trainer Committee.
Do you have any tips for New Year’s Eve in Sydney? What’s your favourite vantage point to see the fireworks?
There are so many wonderful fireworks viewing options available—on the harbour, at one of the harbourside restaurants or in one of Sydney’s beautiful parks or gardens. I personally recommend guests experience an Opera Australia performance at the Sydney Opera House (either the gala concert or the opera) as a special way to see in the New Year. The Sofitel is perfectly located to easily access this iconic building, the views from the Opera House up and down the harbour, including the harbour bridge, are quite spectacular—and you avoid the crush of people at the public fireworks viewing areas, why wouldn’t you?