AUSTRALIA’S SOUTH WEST
DESTINATION OF THE MONTH
WEEK 5 OF 5
In Western Australia’s South West, locals and travellers live the dream every day – whether it’s getting barrelled on world-class surf waves, sipping on award-winning drops and indulging in gourmet produce, or delighting in rugged natural landscapes filled with pristine coastlines, towering forests and much more – it’s easy to see why it’s a destination loved by locals and visitors alike.
Travellers can now fly direct into the region from Melbourne to Busselton-Margaret River with Jetstar Australia, landing your clients in the heart of this magnificent destination. Here are nine not-to-be-missed luxury experiences in this awe-inspiring part of the world.
Taste in Style
For an intimate and immersive tour, Fraser Gallop Estate in Margaret River’s Wilyabrup valley presents the Taste of the Vineyard – a light-hearted, informative and interactive journey that gives guests the opportunity to explore the private and awarded property in a solar-powered EV buggy. The host takes a limited group of seven travellers deep into the Estate and manicured gardens of Gallop House, all while tasting multi-award-winning wines at the picturesque locations among the vineyard from which they are created.
The unique location of the vineyard itself, geography and climate conditions combine to imbue the colour, flavours and aromas found only in their wines. The tour then goes behind the scenes of the winery to demonstrate how the wines are made, with a chance to meet winemaker Clive Otto and taste the forthcoming vintage from a barrel. Available every Friday and Saturday from 10.20am to 12pm, this experience finishes just in time to find lunch at one of the many fantastic restaurants close by.
For a progressive gourmet dining concept unlike any other in the country, don’t miss the Taste of the Bays Cruise. This deluxe dining sunset cruise with South West Cruises operates on a purpose-built 60-ft charter boat ‘Reel Affair’; a multi-level vessel fully equipped to combine the excitement of sight-seeing, with wining, dining and relaxation on the sparkling, turquoise waters of Cape Naturaliste and Geographe Bay. Float on the calm, picturesque ocean while sipping cocktails, bubbles, chilled local beers and fine Margaret River wines. Take a dip in the secluded bays, relax on the deck surrounded by views kissed with magic, witness a burst of colour in the sunset finale; all while dining on the freshest, locally grown seafood and produce in a unique 7-part feast prepared by a private chef.
Relax & Recoup
Creative juices flow and indulgence of luxury flourishes at Vasse Virgin, a boutique producer of natural skincare and gourmet food ranges. Visit the factory in Wilyabrup in the Margaret River region – a converted machinery shed emitting the most wonderful aromas, located at the end of the beautifully tree-lined drive. Using only natural ingredients, including Australia extra virgin olive oil, plant extracts and essential oils to produce a complete range of skin and body care such as moisturising lotions, skin balms and scrubs, to bath and massage oils, and shampoo and conditioners, Vasse Virgin offers guests a chance to feel the difference by experiencing the products at a lovely warm water testing station. Travellers can immerse themselves in a workshop or masterclass and leave with their own hand-crafted perfume or lip-balm as a memento.
For a restful stay in Metricup in the Margaret River region, Eight Willows Retreat offers self-contained luxury chalets with nature at the doorstep and rejuvenation at its core. The refurbished four-bedroom house ‘The Residence’, is ideal for holidaying families, a conference base or use as a bridal suite for destination weddings set in a photogenic backdrop of tall eucalypts, native wildlife and the retreat’s iconic willows.
In the Great Southern, Maitraya Private Retreat is a luxury private retreat offering unparalleled beauty, complete seclusion and serenity that will stay with travellers long after they depart. The homestead has breathtaking views of the picturesque Southern Ocean, nearby islands and surrounding mountains.
In the heart of Albany in the Great Southern, luxury bed and breakfast The Beach House at Bayside is a great pick for an intimate, calm and enjoyable experience with warm country hospitality. With an emphasis on life’s little luxuries – think beautiful local food and wine, and great advice on best-hidden spots to visit – this boutique accommodation is just minutes away from the historic Albany town centre, magnificent Southern coastline and tranquil rural landscapes waiting to be explored.
Be Guided by the Locals
One of the best things about Australia’s South West are the interesting, local characters – the region has a reputation for them. Anyone who visits recognises that things are a little different here, with many locals bringing their own passions to life. They are what give this region a very specific vibe.
Experience it first-hand with Margaret River Discovery Co., gliding on the actual Margaret River in a canoe alongside owner/operator Sean Blocksidge, or join him in a luxury 4WD on a Margaret River wine tour experience that gets away from the masses to discover people and places that travellers won’t find on their own. Sean likes to reveal a few hidden secrets, open a few closed gates and discover how much more there is to the region than just the fabulous wine.
Running tours for more than 20 years, Luxury Outback Tours are experts in this region. Their foremost focus is luxury boutique travel, offering exclusive and personalised small group Luxury 4WD tours in the form of private tours, day tours, short breaks and extended tours throughout Western Australia. The Margaret River, Pemberton and Albany 4-Day Tour hits the highlights of the region like Busselton Jetty, Boranup Karri Forest, Valley of the Giants Treetop Walk, The Gap and Natural Bridge, National Anzac Centre and more, ensuring a memorable and special experience.
For the ultimate luxury experience, True North Adventure Cruises runs their Adventure South West journey, an eight-night cruise during which guests indulge in the delicacies of the sea, washed down with a glass (or bottle) from the revered cellars of the Margaret River Wine Region, explore endless beaches with icing-sugar white sands, and wondrous wildlife encounters. The TRUE NORTH ship is purpose-built and ideal for reaching shallow river systems, allowing discerning adventurers to experience wilderness straight out of their cabins, in surroundings more akin to one of the world’s most exclusive hotels! Guests enjoy the lavish vantage points including a sundeck, a forward observation lounge, a lounge and an alfresco bar, and the added luxury of an onboard helicopter.
Lead image: Frasor Gallop Estate, Wilyabrup – Margaret River Region