Fresh country air, sprawling hillsides, bloody good wine and 14 of your closest friends. Here, unique country houses perfect for group getaways. By Alissa Jenkins and Megan Arkinstall
Stonebarn, Quinninup, WA
Where: 170 kilometres south-east of Margaret River.
What we like: Although this luxury estate has been designed with groups in mind, it functions like a private retreat for couples as well, as every guest suite features a private balcony, kitchenette and en-suite, each with a claw-foot bath and double vanity. (And check out the four-poster king-sized beds!) The shared areas also include a full kitchen, well-stocked wine cellar and reading room, but our favourite feature is outdoors. As the house is situated on 160 acres of forest, guests have the privacy to enjoy an authentic bush bath, overlooking the dam.
Don’t miss: The property’s own trufferie, where regular hunts for prized Perigord truffles are held in winter. But if you miss out, visit nearby Wine and Truffle Co in Manjimup (wineandtruffle.com.au). There’s also many award-winning local wineries, majestic jarrah and karri forests, but for something closer to home, guests can catch their own trout and marron from the onsite dam.
Who for: Luxury travellers, wine lovers, friends, foodies
The details: Sleeps up to 14; six bedrooms and ten bathrooms. With a two-night minimum stay, prices start from $1600 per night mid week for the entire lodge, and $1800 per night on weekends. stonebarn.com.au
Jacaranda Homestead, Toodyay, WA
Where: 85 kilometres north-east of Perth.
What we like: The gardens. This idyllic farmhouse is surrounded by architecturally-designed ornamental gardens that attract an array of birdlife. Better still, there are many outdoor seating areas, lawns and ponds to take in the flowers and the surrounding Avon Valley views. Inside is comfortable and well-appointed, with modern conveniences such as a DVD player and a cosy open fireplace.
Don’t miss: Many walking trails wind through the property, allowing access to a variety of woodland, paddocks and hilltops. But we think the highlight is a large picnic table set on the hilltop behind the homestead, offering spectacular scenes over the surrounding countryside – especially at dawn and dusk.
Who for: Flower fans, friends, leisure walkers.
The details: Sleeps up to eight; three bedrooms and two bathrooms. Minimum two-night stay from $250 per night for four adults, and an extra $35 for each additional guest. leisurenetproperties.com.au