“Perfection”, “unrivalled views”, “outstanding service”, and “life does not get any better than this” are just some of the praises you sang for this second-time winner. And there’s little wonder why. Situated on the northern tip of Hamilton Island overlooking the Coral Sea, qualia quietly boasts architecturally-designed pavilions and gardens, infinity pools, five-star dining and “the best spa I’ve experienced”, according to one reader. Suffice to say, qualia has long been an AT favourite. Of course, we’re not the only ones with such appreciation – it has the Relais & Chateaux stamp of quality and was also crowned Best Resort in the World 2012 by Conde Nast, cementing its place as the darling of Australian luxury.
2011 winner Cable Beach Club Resort in Broome came in runner-up for the second year in a row for mastering the balance between “polished yet relaxed”, while Whitsunday’s other glamour queen, Hayman, was praised for “end-to-end luxury”. Second-time finalist, Fraser Island’s Kingfisher Bay Resort followed closely behind, with the finalists list rounded out by dreamy Lizard Island.