The Romantic Getaways Guide
21 escapes to make you feel the love
What’s not to love about love? Love is butterflies in the stomach, cuddles on the couch and even has its own style of holiday: the couples’ escape.
Mention the words ‘romantic getaway’ and images of red roses, chocolates, roaring wood fires and fluffy bathrobes will spring to mind. And while those things go a long way in setting the mood, you’ll also need something else: accommodation with the goods to make you fall in love all over again. So where will you go? Perhaps a cosy B&B where you won’t be disturbed, a mountain cabin with spectacular views or a luxury villa set in tropical gardens…
No matter what stay tickles your fancy, you’ll find it in our Romantic Getaways guide. Expect a collection of 21 boutique escapes, with everything from sprawling properties in the Sunshine Coast hinterland to spa chalets in north-east Victoria and luxurious homes among the vines of the Barossa Valley. Some properties have put forward special offers too, and that might be all you need to book your romantic retreat. You might also have an anniversary on the horizon, be thinking about popping the question or simply looking for a place to canoodle on the couch… any excuse will do.
Woodbridge on the Derwent, New Norfolk
Woodbridge on the Derwent in New Norfolk isn’t your average sleep-and-stay. It’s luxurious, exclusive and is Tasmania’s only Small Luxury Hotel of the World. This makes Woodbridge on the Derwent the perfect setting for any romantic escape. Take your pick of the hotel’s eight rooms and suites; all have a queen or king bed, a lounge space and ensuite with a bathtub or spa bath. Shared living spaces are scattered throughout the historic house and a guest-only restaurant dishes up spectacular seasonal fare. In fine weather, eat outside underneath the almond trees before slipping into the bubbling Jacuzzi. During the day, arrange for one of the hotel’s private guided activities. There are pursuits to suit all tastes, including helicopter adventures, nature and wilderness experiences, and food and wine tours.
Wings Barossa Bird and Bush Retreat, Springton
There are secluded getaways and then there is Wings Barossa Bird and Bush Retreat. This Barossa Valley hideaway lives on a 170-acre conservation reserve, so while you will have some neighbours – of the feathery or furry variety, that is – your only human companions will be the ones of your choosing. The retreat is a mix of a modern pad and old-world homestead. Think exposed brick walls, slate tiles, contemporary fixtures and an open-plan master suite on the upper floor. There are two extra bedrooms downstairs, while a day cabin by the dam makes the ultimate couples' reading spot. A network of well-maintained walks weave across the property and meadows are marvellous locations for picnics.
The White House Holiday Apartments, Port Douglas
Sipping cold refreshments by a saltwater pool in tropical Port Douglas, a few steps from Four Mile Beach, is the stuff that heart-fluttering dreams are made on. Meet The White House Holiday Apartments. You’ll find picture-perfect snorkelling spots as well as spas and cafes in the vicinity of this well-appointed property, where the only accompaniment to your whispered sweet nothings will be the birdsong from the adjoining parkland. Kick back on the balcony of your airy apartment with a bottle of wine and plan which World Heritage wonder to visit next. The question is, would you like your courtship to include coastal adventure?
Villa D'Amour, Mount Dandenong
When you can’t make it to Paris, we bring the City of Light to you. Inspired by the lavish decor of the Sun King’s court, Villa d'Amour at Maison Belle Retreat in the Dandenong Ranges serves up plush furnishings and tables for two so all you need to bring along is a French kiss for your petit ami. Love is in the name of this property, with bubbly and chocolates included on arrival for weekend stays and a string of quality eateries nearby to help you live to excess. The local area provides ornamental gardens, craft markets and nature trails to occupy your days, if you can pull yourselves away from the regal bedchamber that is.
Typo Station, Cheshunt
It’s hard to beat the sublime vistas of Victoria’s high country and this lovingly restored cattle station beneath Mount Cobbler is a convenient and homely base from which to appreciate them. Whether you’re celebrating a special occasion with close friends or simply need a dose of tranquillity and rural repose, the homestead at Typo Station can oblige with its long dining table and wrap-around verandah. While autumn may be the most photogenic season in the King Valley, there’s no need to delay your visit until then with cheese shops, characterful pubs and the Italian-style wineries of the Prosecco Road to tick off.
Thala Beach Nature Reserve, Oak Beach
Love stories don’t get much more epic than Tarzan and Jane, but you can live out your own rainforest romance from one of the timber bungalows at Thala Beach Nature Reserve. Situated on a private headland less than an hour from Cairns, this eco-friendly resort is designed around couples that like to discover sheltered coves, drink sundowners amid butterflies and sugar gliders, and enjoy moonlit swims. You might order a picnic hamper and take your lover along one of the many nature trails to find the ultimate selfie spot, or simply kick back in the hot tub before a delicious dinner in the resort’s treetop restaurant.
Stonewell Cottages and Vineyards, Tanunda
If ever there was an ideal setting for a proposal it’s Stonewell, where the aptly named Cupid’s Cottage sits perched above a serene lake surrounded by vines and native trees. Equipped with custom-made king bed, wood fire, candlelit spa bath and even a rowboat, this secluded cottage offers all the props you need to recreate your own version of The Notebook. Top this off with an al fresco dining area, Netflix-enabled television and the ability to book a massage in your cottage and your valentine will be wooed in no time. If you’re double dating, two-bed options don’t get much prettier than The Hideaway cottage.
Seppeltsfield Vineyard Cottage, Seppeltsfield
Seize the day is the philosophy (and wine range) associated with Seppeltsfield Vineyard Cottage, a 1860s cellarman’s cottage turned sweethearts’ sanctuary in the Barossa Valley. Treat your partner to a private vineyard tour and tasting before taking in views of the vines from a sunlounger or embarking on an epicurean odyssey around the region. Of an evening you can capitalise on complimentary transfers to one of the fine dining restaurants nearby, play your favourite sultry songs through the Bose sound system and let cares float away in the opulent clawfoot bath. Go ahead, breathe the country air in deep and appreciate the attention to detail that award-winning Seppeltsfield is known for.
Paradise House, Boat Harbour Beach
Getting away from it all to reconnect with your significant other is easy at Paradise House, a wonderfully situated property in north west Tasmania. Here you can enjoy a spot of dolphin watching during breakfast on your balcony, then splash around in the waters of Boat Harbour Beach before heading out to Hellyers Road Distillery for a dram of single malt. A trip to the Apple Isle would be incomplete without sampling some of Australia’s finest fresh produce and you can turn your purchases into a perfect meal for two later in the gourmet kitchen. In other words: swim, snuggle, snack, repeat.
Ocean Inlet, Fairhaven
If watching the sun dip beneath the surface of a cobalt sea from the comfort of a couple-sized spa bath after a day wandering some of the state’s best beaches is not your idea of a summer romance setting, look away now. Because this is what you’ll find in Ocean Inlet’s stunning Shorehouse apartment, where floor-to-ceiling windows make you feel like you’re sleeping under the stars and the surf of the Bass Strait provides the soundtrack. Nestled in traditional Wathaurung country, this split-level bolthole is within easy reach of beloved coastal eatery A La Greque as well as clifftop walks to bring out your inner poet. If you’re fitting in date night around the kids, Ocean Inlet offers glamping and family-sized accommodation options too.
Misty Mountain Rainforest Retreat, Bellenden Ker
With its tucked-away perch in the foothills of an ancient mountain, it would be easy to mistake Misty Mountain Rainforest Retreat as being located in Hawaii or Fiji. Happily though, this exclusive escape is just south of Cairns. Those who don’t fancy making the drive can take a chartered helicopter from the airport or city, which will drop you and your partner off on Misty Mountain’s private helipad. The Blue Lagoon Villa is your home while you are here but is more like a full-scale home than a villa. Expect a full kitchen, dining area, lounge and wrap-around balcony with swinging loveseat, plus the villa is only a couple of barefoot steps away from the come-hither lagoon pool. A shaded daybed sits next to the pool, as does the Glass Bar and Lounge, a slick party space with high-gloss surfaces, billiards table and a top-notch sound system.
Mews Cottages, New Gisborbe
You don’t have to head far from Melbourne for a lovey-dovey weekend involving picnics in scenic parks, country art galleries and cosy cottages that exude provincial charm. Base yourselves at Mews Cottages in historical New Gisborne at the foothills of the Macedon Ranges and you’ll find restaurants, wineries and hikes aplenty to experience, or simply take advantage of the slow pace of village life to rest and devote your full attention to each other. Take your time over the generous continental breakfast provided and sink into a spa bath to unwind; some time unplugged could be just the reinvigoration your relationship needs.
Glass on Glasshouse, Glasshouse Mountains
A sleek stay and luxury facilities, such as the ones you’ll find at Glass on Glasshouse, go a long way in making a memorable romantic weekend. However, one thing that will make your getaway even better is a spectacular setting – and these pavilions have that too. Thanks to floor-to-ceiling windows, this trio all look out across to the 25-million-year-old volcanic cores of the Glasshouse Mountains. You'll be able to admire the mountains from almost any point within your pavilion, be it from the sud-filled spa bath, the comfortable leather lounge or the dining setting on your private deck. Hook up your music player to the pavilion’s Bluetooth-enabled sound system and you’ll be able to relax with your favourite crooner warbling in the background, only pressing pause to pick up a spread from the onsite eatery. Getaway made.
East Bedarra Island Retreat, Bedarra Island
Are you looking to have all your castaway fantasies fulfilled, with a dose of luxury thrown in? No problem. East Bedarra Island Retreat is a clothing-optional villa that recently featured on Channel 9’s Unreal Estate. It is the very definition of honeymoon hideaway, complete with private beach and Great Barrier Reef backdrop. Fronted by a natural swimming pool and sea turtle territory, this soul-soothing retreat also boasts an outdoor bar and cinema set-up as well as fishing and kayaking provisions for Robinson Crusoe-esque adventures. As you and your partner slip onto island time, far from the bright lights and traffic fumes of the urban jungle, you’ll be wondering whether you can spend every anniversary in such peaceful surrounds.
Dreamers Mountain Village, Mount Beauty
With its crackling fireplaces, steamy spas and sunken lounges draped with plush textiles, Dreamers Mountain Village in Mount Beauty has all the must-have ingredients for a romantic getaway – all you need to add is you. Couples will love this property's moody spa chalets. These timber-and-stone dens are the perfect size for two and come fitted out with a queen or king bed, cooking facilities and an outdoor area. Another accommodation option for loved-up duos is a studio spa room. Let the fresh mountain air of Victoria’s High Country work its magic as you paddle in the lagoon-shaped pool or walk through Dreamers' beautiful gardens. Falls Creek is only a 30-minute drive away for couples attracted to adventure sports and cycling.
For couples that can think of nothing better than a weekend by the sea with their nearest and dearest, this beautifully restored 19th-century home in Queenscliff gets top billing. When at Clydesville, it’s not hard to imagine yourself a character in a Victorian novel while taking the air on the verandah or curling up on a grandfather chair in the reading room. Plus, multiple living areas mean you can steal a moment alone with your paramour easily enough. If promenading on pebbled beaches and watching local fishermen ply their trade leaves you craving nourishment, remember that indulgence opportunities abound at nearby cellar doors.
The Chocolate Lily, Sedgwick
Forgive the pun, but you’ll think you’ve struck gold when you first pull up to The Chocolate Lily in Sedgwick. Located in Victoria’s Goldfields, The Chocolate Lily is an award-winning sustainable gem made up of two bedrooms, spa bathroom and a light-filled lounge with comfortable chairs, a plush loveseat and potbelly fireplace. Settle yourself into one of the sunloungers and fill the hours of your day with soaking up the sunshine, paddling in the solar-heated swimming pool and deciding how many photos of that view is too many to post on Facebook. The paved courtyard is a beautiful spot for tucking into the gorgeous provisions in your breakfast basket. The cellar doors of Heathcote are nearby, and the historic towns of Maldon and Kyneton are perfect for meandering hand-in-hand with your partner.
Blue Summit Cottages, Maleny
The only place to find a better view of the Sunshine Coast hinterland than that at Blue Summit Cottages is from the air. So unless you and your love can take to the sky, the best place to enjoy these vistas from is your balcony. As well as the four contemporary cottages, this verdant 80-acre property is also home to a grand four-bedroom house. While the home is suited to groups and families, romance is best had in one of the open-plan cottages. It is here where you’ll sip your morning coffee in bed, canoodle in front of the gas log fire, take your afternoon aperitif outside and soak in the double spa bath. Thoughtful extras, including candles, handmade soaps, chocolates and fluffy bathrobes will help set the mood. Massages, breakfast hampers and flower arrangements can be organised too.
Beechmont Garden Retreat, Olinda
Forget cottages and intimate hideaways as the front-runners for romantic getaway accommodation. Beechmont Garden Retreat will give you all the charm of a compact stay but you’ll also have ample space to make yourself at home. One of the first things you’ll want to do after stashing your bags is explore – and you’re in luck. This luxurious dwelling has four bedrooms, reading nooks, wood-burning fires and an undercover outdoor area with a barbecue. The sprawling 10-acre estate is all yours while you’re here and the gardens are best seen with packed picnics and croquet mallets in tow. Time your adventure for the morning to make the most of the breakfast provisions available during your stay.
Alamanda Palm Cove by Lancemore, Palm Cove
Not all romantic escapes have to involve cuddling by a roaring fire. You might be looking to swap that fireplace for a sleek swimming pool, beachfront location and skin-warming sunshine. Enter Alamanda Palm Cove by Lancemore, an award-winning resort in Queensland offering modern suites, a lush setting and plenty of opportunities for amour. There are two- and three-bedroom options if you’re travelling with a crowd, but if you have booked in for a getaway à deux then the one-bedroom suite should be your room of choice. Expect a private balcony for afternoon sundowners and a kitchen loaded with the kit you need to prep aphrodisiac-laden plates. Don’t feel like cooking? An in-house chef can be arranged, or you might opt for a candlelit dinner on the beach.
Adelaide Luxury Beach House, Adelaide
Adelaide Luxury Beach House might be blessed with a Henly Beach location but this tri-level beauty’s assets aren’t limited to its perch. The house sleeps up to 11 but is ideal for those couples dreaming of having a picture-perfect beach getaway all to themselves. Across the three storeys, you can expect a master with spa ensuite and spectacular ocean views, two living areas, a garden courtyard and a kitchen with all the bells and whistles. The cherry on top is the roof terrace and it is up here where you’ll pop that bottle of chilled sparkling and while away an afternoon watching the waves crash onto the sand. Take up the option for a therapeutic massage, a private chef and airport transfers to make your stay one worth bragging about.
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Amour. Love. The warm and fuzzies. Whatever you call it, there is something special about the prospect of romance – even more so when you’re bound for a couples’ getaway with your beau. And while Hollywood’s endless string of rom-coms might have you believe there is only one way to do a romantic escape, that isn’t quite true.
So what goes into making your perfect romantic escape? Fans of the classics might pick the path of red roses, canoodling by the fireplace and whispering sweet nothings, or the idea of hightailing it to a tropical villa and sprawling out on sunlounger might pique your interest. No matter how you define a romantic getaway, one thing is for certain: this is your chance to treat you and your partner. Think swish suites with all the trimmings, lavish candlelit dinners, day spa treatments and indulgent excursions.
Before you go off to search high and low for a stay that meets the above, don’t fret. In this Romantic Getaways guide you’ll find a collection of 21 boutique properties, from beachfront beauties and high country hideaways to secluded homesteads and rainforest retreats. All of these stays are perfect for when the mood for a love-in strikes, and while most are designed for getaways à deux, some can cater for smaller groups too.
Tempted? You will be once you learn that some properties have created exclusive offers just for Beautiful Accommodation readers. So whether you’re celebrating Valentine’s Day, looking for a place to pop the question or simply spend time with your special someone, there’s never been a better opportunity to book your next romantic rendezvous.