RAKKOJAE, SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA
The name literally refers to a place which opens the minds of visitors to old traditions.
Beautiful family-owned stone and wood hanok in Seoul’s Bukchong district with
heated jade floors and bamboo gardens
VILLA BENTOTA, BENTOTA, SRI LANKA
Originally one of Sri Lanka’s first guesthouses, designed by Geoffrey Bawa
and now reinvented by the formidably stylish Shanth Fernando of Paradise Road
as a calm neo-colonial beachfront retreat
THE ASADANG, BANGKOK, THAILAND
Two architects have renovated this Chinatown guesthouse
into a gorgeous boutique hotel for those interested in the real Bangkok.
Intricate details and a real sense of heritage are prevalent.
SEVEN TERRACES, PENANG, MALAYSIA
Traditional shophouses now house high-ceilinged sleeping quarters
furnished with beautiful antiques in the heart of Colonial Georgetown.
Another triumph from visionary restorer Christopher Ong.
COURTYARD 7, BEIJING, CHINA
Quing Dynasty courtyard in the Hutongs of Beijing.
Now converted into seven "houses" complete with antiques,
silks, and a sense of history.
FRUEAUF FALLS CREEK
After a day on Wombat’s Ramble, Frueauf Village offers not only modish apartments and chalets but an onsite food store and cinema in family friendly Falls Creek in the Victorian Alps.
Supercute old weatherboard dairy near in equally cutely named Possum Creek, renovated in bright colours with books, toys, and games galore. What’s to do? Market day in Bangalow, beaches at Byron and cows on your doorstep.
RAWNSLEY PARK ECO VILLAS
Two bedroom luxury eco villas set amongst South Australia’s stunning Flinders Ranges. Great nearby walks for kids including wildlife spotting, and at night, a retractable ceiling means you can have an in house astronomy lesson.
CAPE OTWAY LIGHTSTATION
Sleep out in the lighthousekeepers’ house on a striking peninsula beneath one of the most historically significant lighthouses on the Australian Coast. Near the beaches of Apollo Bay, the Great Ocean Road stretches behind and ahead of you.
Sleeps 10 with a dedicated children’s bedroom sleeping 4 little terrors. Plan for them to be exhausted after days at the beach and evenings at your private outdoor cinema, so you can crack open that Cullen red.
Perpetually hip Hemmes flagship in the CBD
Casino Royale on Darling Harbour, with style and substance
Revamped beauty in the Historic District
The Penthouse has a private rooftop terrace with harbour views
Hipster heaven in the shopping heart of town
More buzz than a honey hive
The best point blank views of the Harbour in town.
Newly polished with price tags to match.
Vintage Airstream, Big Sur
Classic trailers resdicovered and renovated with love and more than a little style.
Dunton Hot Springs, Colorado
Bring out your inner cowboy or indian. Wood cabins and a teepee in the Wild West.
Amanwana, Moyo Island
Aman-zen tents on a tiny island reserve just off the coast of Sumbawa.
Barely a swallow’s wingspan from Mt Fuji. Glorious in Autumn.
Peaceful enclave near the River Katsura dating back to 1685 with outstanding Kaseki menus.
Immaculate traditional inn in downtown Kyoto,
one of the most highly regarded in a city of highly regarded ryokan.
Not true ryokan, these restored shopfronts offer a glimpse into heritage Kyoto with all mod cons.
Stunning views from this contemporary mountain onsen oasis.
THE WHITE HOUSE, DAYLESFORD, VIC
Owned by Empire 111's Lyn Gardener, this vintage
weatherboard is perfect for cosying up after a day spa
THE LAIR, SWANSEA, TAS
Watch the weather roll in from your glass eyrie;
the kitchen will be well stocked with some fine local red.
BYRONVIEW FARM COTTAGE, BYRON BAY, NSW
Pastoral and ocean views from this hilltop gem,
owned and styled by the peripatetic owners of Strangetrader.
FJALL, FALLS CREEK, VIC
As close to Scandinvia as you'll get in Victoria.
Pared back luxury in the Victorian snowfields.
CLIFF HOUSE, KANGAROO ISLAND, SA
The magnificent views over Snellings Beach from the tower bedroom
are matched only by the sunken lounge with firepit.
Fabulously child friendly
and beautifully designed in quiet Canggu
Stunning beauty on the Bukit cliffs,
like your own private Bvlgari
VILLA DES INDES
Antiques furnish the two villas in bustling Seminyak.
Rent either residence or the whole five bedroom compound.
Seven bedroom beachfront beauty near Tanah Lot with
interesting architecture and manicured grounds
THE BALI BALI RESIDENCE
In Umalas not far from Seminyak, this interesting compound
is all angles, ethnic details and rice paddy views.
Hotel Sant Angelo, Matera, Italy
No Brunelleschi here, just clean interiors in this unique stone city
in the little-visited south of Italy
Serinn House, Cappadocia, Turkey
Modernist cave amongst the fairy chimneys in
this desert landscape
Perivolas, Oia, Santorini
One of my favourite hotels ever, rustic
whitewashed wine caves overlooking the stunning caldera
The Caves, Negril, Jamaica
Breezy Caribbean cottages not so much in,
but on, the limestone cliffs of Southern Jamaica
Le Prince Noir, Les Baux, France
An artist's honey-stone chambre d'hotes built within
the famous clifftop fortress town.
SNELLINGS BEACH, NORTHERN KANGAROO ISLAND, SA
A perfect crescent with an inviting estuary at one end. Iridescent ochre cliffs, resident dolphins, cold clear water.
DURRAS BEACH, NEAR BATEMAN'S BAY, SOUTHERN NSW
A low key bay for swimming and surfing, long and undeveloped, sheltered by 50's houses, a retro caravan park, pines and sand dunes,
CAPE BRIDGEWATER, VICTORIA
If the Brontes were to set a novel on a beach, this would be it. White, wild and isolated, surrounded by Victoria’s highest sea cliffs.
WATERFALL BEACH, NEAR ALBANY, WA
The colours of southern WA waters are unique – turquoise doesn’t do it justice. Waterfall Beach is at the end of a little used bush track, through a gap in the rocks. Secret indeed.
CYLINDER BEACH, NORTH STRADBROKE ISLAND, QLD
Half a kilometer of transparent water backed by a shady forest reserve, with gentle waves and rocky bookends.
Languid and mesmerising, following the intersecting lives in Saigon of an urchin, a prostitute, a cyclo driver and a lotus seller. Beautifully shot.
THE QUIET AMERICAN
Tense and honest adaption of Graham Greene's seminal novel. Michael Caine is brilliant as the world weary journalist in Hanoi during Vietnam's inevitable move to war.
THE SCENT OF THE GREEN PAPAYA
Moving story, richly filmed, of a young servant girl's maturation as she moves through a household to find love and peace.
Vivid and sometimes shocking portrayal of a young cyclo driver and his sister forced into working for a street gang, beautifully realised with the grit and urban mayhem of Saigon tempered by almost hallucinatory imagery.
A political manifest, a love story, a travelogue - all of these more with the glorious Catherine Deneuve in full matriarchal glory.
BLACK SPRINGS BAKERY
Small but perfectly formed retreat for two just outside Beechworth.
French style linens and antiques with a contemporary sensibility.
BONDI BEACH HOUSE
Bondi Beach, Sydney
Light, bright and lovely guesthouse just a short block from the beach.
Step out onto your balcony, feel the sea breeze and leave the pace of the city behind.
Darwin, Northern Territory
An iconic Darwinian experience – two century old pearler’s houses
updated with kilims, original artwork and Balinese inspired décor.
Much more personality than the resort options around town.
This stunning Renaissance-style Victorian building in eclectic Richmond was
originally the home of an Anglican bishop, then the Moulin Rouge Massage Parlour.
Its rich history continues as an utterly cosmopolitan retreat.
Hepburn Springs, Victoria
Weatherboard charmer in the midst of spa country.
Think open fires, fresh baked bread and country flowers.
Wade across to this glorious colonial perch at low tide.
It’s withstood a tsunami, a civil war and endless house parties.
Set like a jewel in Bora Bora lagoon,
this tropical idyll sleeps up to 20 fairly loaded guests.
THE RANIA EXPERIENCE
A tiny dot in the midst of the Indian Ocean, accommodating
up to twelve people in beach bures. Private yacht thrown in.
Newly launched by the folk at Huka Lodge,
this 13-acre island sleeps 8 in style, including an
open-air hilltop pavilion. High on my hit list.
An island’s island, off the coast of Ibiza. Sleek, flowing, airy and
very Mediterranean, the sole villa sleeps 10, with plenty of room
to spin some discs. Or slip one if you're of a certain age.
THE HEALESVILLE HOTEL
A classic, set in the heart of the Yarra Valley.
Great pub atmosphere with simple rooms upstairs.
THE WARRNAMBOOL HOTEL
At the end of the Great Ocean Road in
the cool country town of Warrnambool you'll find
8 bright and breezy rooms and a heated beer garden.
THE MIDDLE PARK HOTEL
There's a buzz about this new sophisticate,
between streetwise St. Kilda and leafy Albert Park
BURRAWONG VILLAGE HOTEL
Glorious NSW country pub with lovely rooms,
rolling grounds and local ales and produce.
5 ROOMS AT THE STIRLING HOTEL
Climb upstairs to your open fire after an excellent pub meal.
These luxurious suites are the perfect base for
Adelaide Hills touring
Acres of Scottish highland all to yourself.
Cushy sofas and all manner of whiskies
starting with "Glen" await at day's end.
Scandinavian getaway in northern Norway,
think cold snow and hot saunas
THE RANCH AT ROCK CREEK
For those with a longing for the wild west but a
penchant for the finer things.... wedged between
Glacier and Yellowstone in deepest Wyoming
Francis Ford Coppola's jaguar spotting
hideaway in the Belizean jungle
All schist and snow-capped peaks in the
middle of Middle Earth
Four bedroom glass box retreat smack bang
in the middle of terra rossa territory
Owner Rick Bzowy will share his passion for wine
and the jaw dropping views from this modernist beauty are a bonus
Stone, timber, plump cushions and all of life's comforts
in a beautiful bushland setting in the heart of
Yarra Valley, VIC
Cinderella conversion of a low-slung 80's building
into a sleek 3 bedroom hideaway, moments from
Healesville and loads of cool climate Pinot Noir
LILLIAN'S OF LOVEDALE
Hunter Valley, NSW
Sweet light-filled weatherboard house
on 25 acres in the Lower Hunter.
Guided naturalist programmes throughout winter
and summer including Wolf and Bear discovery camps.
AGUILA DE OSA
Family-friendly eco lodge providing whale
and dolpin watching, horseriding, canopy tours,
mountain biking and kayaking.
ATLANTIS THE PALM
Fairly hideous and totally over the top water world including
3 dolphin lagoons, a 42 acre water park, and
a massive underwater maze.
Colorado and Utah, USA
The Museum of Western Colorado will arrange 3 and 5 day
dino digs with instruction from a paleontologist.
MISOOL ECO RESORT
Raja Empat Dua, Philippines
Hard to get to, even more difficult to leave.
Moyo Island, Indonesia
Jungle tents on an island in the middle of the Flores Sea.
Komodo expeditions available on the private teak cruiser, Amanikan.
So exclusive you need to register before being invited to be a guest.
For very wealthy divers indeed.
Baa Atoll, Maldives
An oldie but a goodie – overlooking brochure-perfect waters,
pretty thatched and whitewashed bures, with stargazing and spagazing.
Moorish and more-ish beach resort with huge villas
and a 5* PADI dive centre.
RED FEATHER INN
Thick stone walls, climbing vines, cooking classes.
Mod-lodge surrounded by truffle and grape growers
a little past Margaret River. Happy days.
Gracious Queenslander with bucolic views
across the Byron Bay hinterland.
Barossa Valley, SA
Gorgeous gardens amongst the vines.
Ovens River Valley, VIC
Ancient brick kilns now converted into
minimalist digs in Victoria’s lovely north west.
THE ROYAL MAIL HOTEL
Which is more striking? The Grampians panorama
surrounding you, or Dan Hunter's art on a plate?
Classic country gem with respectful, skilful cooking
from Michael Ryan. Don't forget to go to the bakery
on your way home!
Barossa Valley, SA
Stiff competition between a stellar wine list, Mark McNamara's
love affair with local produce, and a soft bed and open fire to follow.
BELLS AT KILLCARE
Central Coast, NSW
Room service from Stefano Manfredi? Si, grazie.
BANNISTERS POINT LODGE
Mollymook Beach, NSW
Rick Stein's only venture outside Padstowe,
overlooking lovely beaches to remind you where
your dinner came from.
EAT AND DUST
Expat Pamela will show you the difference
between idlis and uttapams
NYC FOOD GUY
New York City
The Big Apple? Meatpacking District?
This city is all about food and this guy knows where
to find the best, from Suicide Wings to Smores Pie.
Makes me want to go to Hanoi
with empty belly and adventurous heart
AGLIO OLIO E PEPERONCINO
Lovely blog from a Roman local with
sumptuous photos and the odd recipe too
TOKYO FOOD LIFE
Photojournalistic essay through the back streets
of a wondrous food capital. Also helpful for
identifying unidentifiable foodstuffs.
Southern Highlands, NSW
Harry Seidler’s airy aerie perched over an escarpment near Bowral
with sweeping bush vistas.
Great Ocean Road, Victoria
Minimalist lodge designed by Glenn Murcutt with views from
The Twelve Apostles to the Otways
AVALON COASTAL RETREAT
Craig Rosevear’s glass box overlooking Great Oyster Bay.
If you can’t get in here, sister property Rocky Hills Retreat
is equally worthy.
Ken Latona’s eco shack in the Victorian Goldfields.
Small but perfectly formed.
BOYD BAKER HOUSE
Bacchus Marsh, Victoria
Heritage listed 1950’s masterpiece consisting of a number
of buildings on 35 acres designed by Robin Boyd
and Roy Grounds.
GUEST HOUSE AT FIELD FARM
Eclectic and fantastic selection of pieces administered by
the Trustees of Reservations
SETH PETERSON HOUSE
A rare chance to experience Frank Lloyd Wright’s work
from the interior in Wisconsin
Blue and white tiled fantasia designed both inside and out
by Geo Ponti in 1962. Furnished with original Cassina furniture.
Shame about the tour groups.
Bentota, Sri Lanka
Acclaimed architect Geoffrey Bawa’s gorgeous
garden house is now taking reservations
HOTEL LE CORBUSIER
“La Cite Radieuse” (the Radiant City) is yours to experience
in all its 1952 glory.
CHALET BEAR, KLOSTERS
Chocolate-box chic with views and a big carved
bear to welcome you home.
LA FERME DU BOIS, CHAMONIX
Rustic luxe chalet owned by a young British
ski champ and his equally talented Swedish wife.
CHESETTA, ST MORITZ
Gorgeous contemporary chalet in the
heart of St Moritz
CHALET LE TI, VERBIER
Cute as a button but much more expensive.
FERME DE MOUDON, LES GETS
Beautiful chalet featured on Grand Designs
and not afraid to say so.
AYINDI, BYRON BAY, NSW
Light and airy take on the traditional shack,
set on the hill just above Clarke’s Beach
DICKEBUSCH, PATONGA, NSW
Beautifully kitted out by Koskela
SEJALA BEACH HOUSE, MISSION BEACH, QLD
Glorious open air Balinese vibe in
a restored weatherboard
ZEALANDIA, PORTSEA, VIC
A cool collection of scandi icons and quirky
artwork by the graphic designer owners
THE BAY HOUSE, CAPE BRIDGEWATER, VIC
Miles of beachfront outside,
cosy 70’s (in a good way) inside