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Romance Five Ways

Written by Alison Bone

Romantic getaways come in many guises. Whether you’re dreaming of a luxurious coastal resort, heavenly rainforest retreat, off grid hinterland hideaway or a touch of Mughal-inspired opulence, we’ve found five very special places that redefine the art of the romantic escape.

Revel in an Exclusive Coastal Resort

Resorts are by nature a haven, a place to escape the world. Add in 45 acres of pristine subtropical rainforest to the mix, and your stay is elevated to a whole new level. Such is the experience at Crystalbrook Byron, where 5-star luxury meets soothing surrounds. Nestled deep in the forest, each suite is wonderfully private and designed with the resort’s signature approach to sustainable, laidback luxury which will make you feel right at home. Start your day with yoga and a healthy breakfast, lounge by the glistening pool with its gorgeous rainforest backdrop, and take a stroll to the beach along a boardwalk that winds around lotus ponds, dense paperbark forest and lush groves of Bangalow palms. And make sure to treat yourselves to an indulgent spa date with a signature couples’ treatment at Eléme Day Spa. Evenings at Crystalbrook Byron have their own romantic allure. Sip cocktails at Verandah overlooking the spot lit rainforest, then head to Forest for an intimate candle lit dinner – featuring the finest local ingredients prepared by an internationally acclaimed chef. The resort also provides an enchanting backdrop for weddings and receptions and is just a short drive from Byron Bay.

Get Off Grid

If your idea of romance involves getting off the beaten track, Salty Cabins have a network of unique cabins that offer the ultimate off grid, earth friendly escape. Tucked away in a deliciously private setting high in the Byron hinterland, The A-Frame has views that go on forever, ensuring that you will always feel at one with the elements. Enjoy starry nights by a crackling fire, fall asleep cocooned in the softest organic linen, and wake to watch the sun careep over the most easterly point of Australia. The Cabin is similarly secluded, with the bonus of a pot belly stove, perfect for chilly autumnal nights. Salty Cabins are all about sustainable, low impact travel, and with each stay a tree will be planted in your honour, and $20 donated to Sea Shepherd Australia.

Cosy up in a Cottage

Is watching the sunrise from bed more your thing? Just sweep back the curtains in a charming self-contained one-bedroom cottage at Byron View Farm. Perched atop the highest hilltop in Byron Shire, a 360-degree panorama takes in the coast and the hinterland, which means stunning sunset views as well. Throw in some cheeky alpacas, horses, chooks who think they are dogs, and dogs who know they are dogs, and you have the ideal romantic escape for animal lovers. You can even bring your own furry friend. There’s plenty of wildlife too, with nesting boxes for birds, marsupials and microbats, and wildlife corridors connecting adjoining bushland. Thanks to the owners’ regenerative efforts in the past few years, close to 41,000 rainforest trees have been planted here, making this one of the largest private rainforest regeneration projects in the Northern Rivers. Learn all about it on a Rewilding Tour. And if you are looking for somewhere to tie the knot, Byron View Farm hosts weddings for up to 60 guests.

Hide Away in the Rainforest

A secluded private estate set in 250 acres of lush rainforest in the Tweed hinterland, Crystal Creek Rainforest Retreat provides an intimate setting to reconnect with each other and the natural world, all while wrapped in a cloak of sheer contemporary luxury. Couples only, the retreat has been designed specifically with romance in mind. Self-contained luxury bungalows, villas and lodges are all hidden away in the trees, each with wood fire place, spa bath and floor to ceiling glass revealing sublime views. Some have a private plunge pool too. And if you don’t want to cook, no problem! Gourmet meals can be delivered to your private abode. Enticing honeymoon packages include everything you need to hide away, like gourmet hampers, breakfast baskets, candles and romantic gifts. Keen to explore the rainforest? There’s a choice of hiking trails including Rockhoppers Ramble and Rainforest Walk, which leads past 400-year-old trees to secluded rock pools, where hammocks are suspended over the bubbling creek. Crystal Creek Rainforest Retreat also offers proposal experiences, small weddings and romantic rainforest photo shoots.

Immerse Yourself in the Magic of the East

Where better to celebrate the art of romance than a 5-star, Moghul-inspired palatial retreat built as a labour of love? A private sanctuary in the Tweed Valley, Jodha Bai Retreat was inspired by a visit to the 450-year-old palace of the same name in Fatehpur Sikri (the City of Victory), India. In a feat described as “beautiful madness,” Susan and Cliff Peiffer, spent 13 years creating their masterpiece, which takes its signature pinkish red hues from 300 tonnes of imported Indian red sandstone. Unique, hand-picked furnishings and sculptures from India fill the retreat’s living areas and three luxurious suites. For a truly royal experience, book the decadent 220sq metre Jodha Bai Suite which has a large lounge area, fully equipped kitchen and sumptuous bedroom suite with antique, hand carved triple arch bed head, 1000 count Egyptian cotton sheets and opulent ensuite with spa bath. The suite’s generous wrap around veranda, complete with hand carved arches and columns, takes in coastal and hinterland views all the way to Wollumbin. There’s an outdoor Jacuzzi too, nestled under the palms. Complement your stay at Jodha Bai with luxurious spa treatments, warm hospitality and tasty Indian cuisine served in the regal dining room.


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