Tucked away next to the fire station on Leura Mall is Culgoa, a cute little 19th century cottage set in large gardens.
The 2,450 square metre block is now earmarked for a boutique four-star hotel, with the heritage cottage to be retained and used in conjunction with the hotel.
The hotel is proposed for the rear of the block so it will not affect the streetscape from the Mall.
In a DA now on public exhibition, Coogee-based company Kingsford Property Developments has outlined plans for a 36-room, two-storey hotel with basement parking for 28 cars.
The artist's impressions show a metal-clad building with timber privacy screens.
A statement of environmental effects said: "The design of the proposal has been undertaken in order to ensure the hotel is setback behind the existing cottage to retain the cottage and its presentation to the street."
Further, a heritage impact assessment by Lynch Heritage Consulting concluded: "The design response respects and retains the visual integrity of Culgoa with the introduction of a new building at the rear of the site and the associated parking required located below ground to retain its garden setting. The proposed development will not have an adverse impact on the established aesthetic and historical heritage significance of Culgoa."
While the size of the hotel exceeds council regulations at more than 18 metres wide, which is a "large departure from the control", the DA conceded.
But it added: "It should be noted that the location and configuration has been heavily influenced by containing all development to the rear to maintain the heritage cottage which means that a single larger building is proposed vs a series of small buildings across the site."
Culgoa was built in 1896 as a country house for Sir William Cullen, a politician, barrister and chief justice of NSW, and his wife, Eliza.
After their deaths in the 1930s, the cottage continued to be used as a residence until 1997, when it housed a dental surgery.
The DA is on public exhibition until July 24.