Owned by Terry Kaljo—a former model and founder of the Contemporary Hotels collection of upscale rental homes and villas—the Medusa Boutique Hotel offers 18 unique accommodations in Darlinghurst, an eclectic area and the epicenter of Sydney’s gay community. The 19th-century home is filled with wacky touches, from red Alice in Wonderland–style carpeting that runs up the grand staircase to pastel-pink walls studded with maple leaves in the entryway. The midcentury-modern rooms—with their retro primary colors, geometric patterns, and vintage chaises longues—attract fashion, media, and design professionals looking to get beneath the surface of one of Sydney’s liveliest neighborhoods. But there's still the opportunity to relax, as guests can settle in next to the fireplace in the lobby to read the newspaper, enjoy a complimentary pastry, or make new friends. Longtime staff members offer the kind of local knowledge and personal attention that keeps guests coming back.