Everything you need to know about the Delaware North brand in Australia. From the staff at Australian Traveller magazine.
Delaware North is a large US accommodation investment company that purchased a lot of the Voyages properties when they were sold off by their shopping centre owners in 2009.
Lizard Island is one of Australia’s most prestigious island resorts. The resort is small in scale, but very big on luxury, privacy and attention to detail. The resort has a total of 40 rooms on an island with about 24 beaches. The place is both insanely beautiful and blissfully peaceful. It is the ultimate resort in which to enjoy the Great Barrier Reef.
Rooms here are expensive. Very expensive. People in the “know” are familiar with (and flock to) the island. For that reason you will struggle to find a cheap deal for a stay on Lizard island. You will pay around $1,400 a night for a room. This probably makes it Australia’s most expensive island resort, but one of the very best.
Wilson Island is a perennial favourite in our offices. What makes Wilson Island so great is the lack of well, anything. Think Robinson Crusoe. But with Mrs Crusoe.
A picture perfect coral cay, Wilson island is located 72 kms N/E of Gladstone on the QLD coast. This small island has accommodation in a “tent” style. Each tent is perched on the shore and looks onto its own private piece of beachfront. Meals are consumed in a main communal tent, but don’t be put off by that. There are only 6 tents on the island, so there’s an absolute maximum of 12 guests that you will ever be sharing with anyone else. If staying at a resort with a packed pool and buffet queues dominated by the elderly in their stretchy pants is not your cup of tea – then Wilson Island is for you.
El Questro is perhaps Australia’s ultimate outback cattle station accommodation. The stunning homestead is a sea of green in the outback, and perched over the Chamberlin river.
El Questro Station is a working cattle station and it is HUGE. Try 4,000km2 for a start! In fact, the place is so big that last year a ranger on the property discovered a series of 15 cascading waterfalls in a canyon some 45m (150 ft) in height. Discovered – as in noone had seen them before!
The most luxurious accommodation on the property is the “El Questro Homestead”. Its top suite – the Chaberlain suite will cost you around $1,900 per night. But there are also cheaper options to help you explore this magnificent place.
You can also camp by the river at “The Station” Cost for this is around $17 per night and you can also stay on the other side of the property at Emma Gorge in cabins that cost around $270 per night.
Located about 300km N/E of Uluru is the breathtaking Kings Canyon. An integral part of some of Australia’s great walks is Kings Canyon. And Delaware own the two accommodation options at Kings Canyon. The Kings Canyon Resort Hotel (around $700) and the Kings Canyon Holiday Park and Campground offering basic camping and backpacker style accommodation and facilities.
A gentleman called Mr Lovecraft once came to Australia. He’d travelled all the way from Hollywood, in search of respite from his legions of screaming fans and a doggedly-persistent paparazzi. He found what he was looking for, when he got here: one of the world’s most discreet destinations, Lizard Island. If you’ve never heard of Mr Lovecraft, well – that’s the point. A far cry from flashy cousins Hayman and Hamilton, Lizard is the definition of low-profile; a place of creamy beaches and white daybeds, where the well-heeled and world-famous come to retreat from the world. Despite its remote location,...
Where is it? Coolibah Drive near Kununurra, in The Kimberley, 830km south-west of Darwin How to see it for yourself? This stunning view was taken on board an El Questro scenic flight. The experience takes visitors above the homestead in an open-door helicopter ride, over the Cockburn Ranges andthrough the Pentecost and (pictured) Chamberlain Gorges. A 30-minute scenic tour starts at $280 per person. Why I love it “The amazing contrast of the Chamberlain River with the rugged landscape of the Cockburn Ranges in the background – simply breathtaking.” – Joseph Boulos, Delaware North Australia Parks and Resorts Image...
We countdown the ultimate Australian destinations where you can really unwind and indulge - #3 Lizard Island, Great Barrier Reef, QLD 03 LIZARD ISLAND Great Barrier Reef, Qld TOP CAPACITY: There are 40 suites with a maximum of 80 guests. WHAT TO EXPECT Look up “idyllic luxury island resort” in the dictionary and it should simply state: Lizard Island, 290km north of Cairns. A keyless resort without mobile reception, TV or wi-fi in rooms means you’re immediately immersed in holiday mode, ready or not. The original luxury island resort in Australia, Lizard has a great heritage. The island was named...
We countdown the ultimate Australian destinations where you can really unwind and indulge - #2 El Questro Homestead, The Kimberly, NT 02 EL QUESTRO HOMESTEAD The Kimberley, WA TOP CAPACITY: A maximum of just 12 guests can stay here at any one time (there are just six rooms). WHAT TO EXPECT A single-storey timber homestead clings to the side of the private, picturesque Chamberlain Gorge in the Kimberley, just near the start of the Gibb River Road, 110km from Kununurra. Like any great resort, El Questro has a pool fringed by sun loungers, a sociable and stylish communal area of...
A fresh, beach-themed refurb has transformed this luxurious Queensland island resort into an extra-special getaway. OK, so we’re officially into autumn, but couldn’t you just lie back on one of these day beds and fantasise it’s still summer? Australia’s northernmost Great Barrier Reef resort, Lizard Island, has just unveiled a refurb that brings out the best of its beachside location. Designed by Sydney-based interior architects Pike Withers, the decor uses a colour palette of marine blues and sandy hues which play off the amazing views. Pure poetry. This is what you’d see from the private pool deck at The Pavilion,...
Where is it? 70km north-west of Gladstone, Qld It’s a better class of castaway who washes up on Wilson Island, though they might resent being rescued at the end of their sojourn. It has everything you’d want from a desert island – including catering. A gentle emerald sea filled with brightly coloured fish surrounds this tiny coral cay, the nesting spot of green turtles. The accommodation comprises six safari-style tents, already set up for no more than 12 guests, and there’s a communal longhouse where meals are served. Sunshine, peace and nature: need we say more? ...
The outback is drawing us in like moths to a big ochre flame. It speaks to our sense of identity and nationhood. In the ’80s and ’90s, Australia was characterised by our beaches and cities; 2011 and beyond will be all about the outback. We have an insatiable appetite for the outback with the Kimberley and Top End our most visited destinations. The gloss has not been lost and the Kimberley adventure remains one of the greatest motivating domestic trips for Australians wanting to tap into the uniqueness of our land. The new owners of El Questro and the Ayers...
The luxury lodge is the new black of Australian travel – their time has truly come. The resort experience has been superseded as discerning travellers or exhausted couples in need of rejuvenation seek out the privacy, guest-only activities and indulgence of boutique luxury lodges. While a high-end resort packs in the rooms with relative luxury, the lodge experience goes so much further. Similar to the well-established luxury lodges of NZ and South Africa, the Australian luxury lodge is about the local environment, access to exclusive experiences, privacy and world-class service. The early pioneers of the luxury lodges of Australia were El...
It’s been a long and trying year. Hotels have come and gone – as have travel magazines for that matter – and fortunes have been made and lost. So it’s nice to have a few faves you can rely on. Here are AT’s staff picks from around the country, as well as a look ahead to where you should be considering for 2010. Greg Barton Editor My 2009 Hot List With a young son just a year old, my focus in 2009 has been on travels that keep me close to home, so short breaks have been very much the...
Lizard Island is Australia's premeire luxury resort. On the far north barrier reef it is truly a special place. In recent years, the resort has been refurbished. The buildings - all unobtrusive, low-key timber cabins which, with few exceptions, house two apartments (with no interconnecting rooms) - have been fitted out in the minimalist quasi-Asian style currently so popular in such places. Life at Lizard doesn’t come cheap. The resort has a total of 40 guest rooms with four different grades. Overlooking Sunset Beach, and the most private of all the rooms, is the luxury villa called The Pavilion, which...
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