Since Australia opened its borders just over a year ago a range of amazing new places to stay across Australia have opened up. This includes new hotels, lodges, winery sleepovers, glamping sites, beach houses and villas that cater really well for the influx of travellers heading Down Under.
We’ve picked ten of the best hotels in Australia for those of you planning an Australia adventure.
Capella Sydney – opened March 2023
Capella Sydney is housed within the Department of Education building, designed in the 1900s by NSW government architect George McRae.
After a seven-year renovation, Capella Sydney has finally opened its doors occupying an entire city block just moments from Circular Quay, the Opera House and Harbour Bridge.
Forming part of the city’s prestigious Sandstone Precinct, the building has been meticulously restored and reimagined by Pontiac Land. Capella Sydney has 192 beautiful guestrooms and suites, arranged across nine levels.
Guestrooms and suites are replete with deluxe textiles, standalone tubs and Italian Frette linen and a bespoke collection of vegan, sustainable amenities designed in partnership with Haeckels. Guests enter the hotel via the Farrer Place lobby adorned with acquired and commissioned art.
The ground-floor collection includes works by the likes of Australian artists Judy Watson, Otis Hope Carey, Elise Cakebread and Georgia Bisley, culminating with a large robotic lighting installation by Dutch art duo DRIFT. Titled Meadow, the installation by DRIFT is suspended in the hotel’s central gathering space.
This voluminous lounge area, now known as Aperture, occupies the original courtyard of the old building – the fulcrum from which all the hotel’s amenities are accessed. This includes two other drink-and-dine venues: the landmark restaurant Brasserie 1930 and McRae Bar, both of which feature cuisine in collaboration with The Bentley Group.
On level six, guests can indulge in rejuvenating treatments at Auriga Spa or swim in the 20-metre heated indoor pool, designed to provide the ultimate wellness experience in the heart of the city.
The Living Room, a signature space of all Capella properties, is the private ground-floor retreat where the hotel’s culture and experience programs are conceptualised. Culturists are on-hand to shape the guest experience from pre-arrival to departure. CHECK AVAILABILITY
The Vibe Hotel, Adelaide – opened March 2023
Adelaide is known as the vineyard city of Australia as it is surrounded by some of the world’s best wineries, including Penfolds Magill Estate which is in the city itself. There’s also an incredible foodie scene and visitors love touring the Adelaide Central Market and eating out in the many laneway restaurants and cafes.
Our top tip is to book ahead for Restaurant Botanic in the stunning Botanic Gardens, which was voted Australia’s Best Restaurant in the prestigious 2022 Gourmet Traveller awards.
The Vibe Hotel opened in the heart of the city centre in the hip East End in March 2023 and is the perfect base from which to take advantage of Adelaide’s cocktail culture and restaurant scene.
The 123-room hotel features photography and installations from local artists, an interior design which showcases natural materials and sensual textures, a suspended heated lap pool and some stunning city views.
How much: Deluxe rooms start from $449 per night (approx. £250). CHECK AVAILABILITY
Wonil Hotel, Perth – opened Feb 2023
Wonil Hotel Perth is an intimate and stylish boutique hotel and the first opening of Accor’s Handwritten Collection brand. Wonil, a word used by the First Nations Noongar translates to ‘Peppermint Tree’ and plays an important role in First Nations culture. These trees generously populate the banks of the Swan River surrounding the hotel and have traditionally provided medicinal value to the community, a rich natural habitat for birds and animals, and shade for Noongar communities to gather under, rest and share knowledge.
The Wonil is a symbol of learning that inspires the hotel’s position in the community. Wonil Hotel Perth fosters a sense of belonging where guests and locals come together to live, learn, work and play with sustainable and locally sourced dining, multifunctional spaces and stunning outdoor areas with panoramic views of the Swan River.
The hotel is located on the campus of the University of Western Australia (UWA) and all profits go to supporting medical and scientific research at the five surrounding universities.
How much: Doubles from £124 per night. CHECK AVAILABILITY
The Langham lands in Queensland and hits new heights of luxury
Renowned for its sumptuous surroundings and outstanding service, the quintessentially British brand opened a hotel on the Gold Coast in mid-2022.
The only beachfront hotel in The Langham portfolio globally, the Queensland property shares a slice of the good (surf and beach) life with its guests. There are also rooms that overlook the Gold Coast hinterland, for those that prefer an alternative outlook.
The Langham Gold Coast has a twist on the traditional with its contemporary look, feel and height, but still provides all the signature five-star touches for which the group is known.
The 169-room property overlooks the Pacific Ocean (or hinterland) between Surfers Paradise and Broadbeach on the world-famous Gold Coast of the sunshine state of Queensland. More info visit www.queensland.com
How much: Rooms from AUD360/£196. CHECK AVAILABILITY
The Sebel Canberra Campbell, Canberra, Opened September 2022
The Sebel Canberra Campbell opened its doors in September 2022, offering visitors a new, modern, and conveniently located hotel to rest and relax in. Located minutes from the Australian War Memorial and Lake Burley Griffin promenade, this 4.5-star hotel is surrounded by a variety of dining and bar options. Choose from a selection of 63 studios and one and two-bedroom self-contained suites each with its own kitchenette, laundry facilities, WiFi and daily housekeeping. The Sebel Canberra Campbell offers luxurious amenities and plenty of space for you to make yourself at home.
How much: from AUD$130 per night / £103 GBP CHECK AVAILABILITY
New CANVS Accommodation in the Barossa – March 2023
The team behind the hugely successful CABNs has launched CANVS: eco-friendly pavilion-style accommodation built with canvas walls rather than the timber and large glass sliding doors of the CABNs that allow only natural light in.
Opening in March 2023 the five brand new CANVS neighbour the iconic Seppeltsfield Winery with its amazing cellar door, restaurants and experiences.
The Barossa wine region is about an hour’s drive from the vineyard city of Adelaide and is home to some of the world’s best wineries. As well as wine-tasting experiences there are lots of opportunities to book horse riding tours, hot air balloon flights, cycle trips and walking tours to make the most of this stunning region.
How much: from $264 per night (approx. £150). CHECK AVAILABILITY
Sunnymead Hotel, Great Ocean Road, Victoria
The colourful Sunnymead Hotel, Aireys Inlet opened in February 2023 on the Great Ocean Road in the heart of Aireys Inlet, a small coastal town with a vibrant culture enjoyed by foodies, art lovers and nature seekers about a 90-minute drive from Melbourne.
The 4.5-star boutique property has had a retro-inspired revival. Facilities include a sparkling outdoor pool and pool bar, a fire pit, a modern fusion restaurant and a unique day spa, Indie.
Santara Restaurant serves Indian-inspired dining that is designed for sharing and grazing, paired with fun cocktails and a vibrant atmosphere.
How much: 200 AUD$ per night (approx. £109) CHECK AVAILABILITY
New Wander Kangaroo Island, South Australia
Wander Kangaroo Island, a set of four design-led luxurious eco escapes, launched in December 2022 on the wildlife paradise island of Kangaroo Island (a 30-minute flight from Adelaide). Perched on the northern bluff of the Kangaroo Island coast overlooking Snelling Beach and the waters of the Great Australian Bight, the floor-to-ceiling glass windows give a front-row view of the island’s native wildlife and wild surf.
From the outside bathtub watch kangaroos playing at dusk after a day spent discovering the island’s many wonders, meeting local producers and touring with expert field guides.
How much: Three of the four pods are one-bedroom retreats priced from AUD$1,300 (approx. £730) for two people staying for two nights. The fourth pod has two bedrooms with prices from AUD$1,800 (approx. £1010) for two people staying for two nights (three-night minimum stay on weekends). CHECK AVAILABILITY
Tours: The Wander Concierge can tailor-make experiences including going out with Roanna and Phil, Kangaroo Island locals who run Rad KI. Become a Citizen Scientist for the day as you follow the North West coast of the island, snorkelling in shallow reefs where you may be joined by Australian sea lions, long-nosed fur seals, and dolphins; helping to collect data to preserve them for future generations. The North Coast Marine Discovery Tour costs from AUD$390 per person (approx. £220) Eco-Tours | Research and Discovery Tours, Kangaroo Island | South Australia (radki.com.au)
Finniss River Lodge opened May 2022 in the Top End of the Northern Territory
Finniss River Lodge (photo below) opened May 2022 in the Top End of Australia’s Northern Territory. Situated within the 77-square-mile working cattle property of Finniss River Station and a 90-minute drive south-west of Darwin, the property is owned by the Venturin family. Owner Robert Venturin said that Finniss River Station has operated since 1987 as a grazing property for Brahman cattle.
The ten-suite lodge has wide verandas and a infinity swimming pool with station views. Guests can enjoy locally inspired cuisine cooked according to their preference by resident chef Travis Crane. One of the property’s signature events is ‘Cows & Canapés’, where guests enjoy amazing canapés and drinks while meeting some of the station team and their bovine friends!
How much: Pricing – Adult (per person twin share) $1250 (£682) / based on travel up-to 15 December 2023.
New Winery Sleepover: The Beresford Estate Launches Villa & Suite
Winery sleepovers in South Australia are becoming increasingly popular as visitors book stays at vineyard accommodation within easy reach of Adelaide.
One of the newest is the accommodation that was added to the Beresford Estate on the Fleurieu Peninsula (about a 40 minute drive from Adelaide) in 2022.
For the ultimate wow factor book The Shiraz Villa. For a more heritage vibe book The Grenache Villa, a clever remodelling of the original 19th century cottage which sleeps six.
There are six Grand Reserve suites and nine Reserve suites which line Beresford’s Shiraz vines. Beresford Estate is a 70 acre working vineyard which is also home to the architecturally stunning Beresford Tasting Pavilion, and the Vale Taphouse. Family owned and passionately South Australian, Beresford produces some of the state’s best loved wines.
You may also like to read: Hamilton Island Great Barrier Reef