New South Wales,
Compact, designy, and set in an up-and-coming area right next to the gritty Kings Cross (read: red-light) district, Medusa attracts a young, arty crowd that’s too cool for chain hotels. The 18 rooms and suites here—which surround a minimalist inner courtyard lounge with a narrow reflecting pool—are uniquely decorated, but all have bold, bright color schemes and futuristic, whimsically shaped furnishings (wave-shaped chaise lounges, platform beds with colorful padded headboards, mod light fixtures that resemble glowing lollipops). All have kitchenettes and baths or showers stocked with Aveda toiletries. The property is dog-friendly; guests can have up to two furry friends stay with them with advance notice.
Tip: For breakfast or afternoon pastry, head across the street to Le Petit Crème, a fabulous French café.
Room to Book: Grand rooms have wonderful high ceilings and face the inner courtyard—quieter than the street.