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Oaks Santai Resort Casuarina: A Lavish Balinese Retreat in Northern NSW

Posted by on 4:09 pm in Accommodation, Australia, Blog, Luxury Lifestyle | 0 comments

Oaks Santai Resort Casuarina: A Lavish Balinese Retreat in Northern NSW

Tucked halfway between the energetic Gold Coast, and the zen town of Byron Bay you’ll find a hidden paradise; a collection of small beachside towns that offer respite from the usual hordes of tourists.

Three of my favourite sleepy beach towns along the Queensland-NSW border are conveniently lined up just south of Tweed Heads. Kingscliff starts off the trio, and a bit further south you’ll encounter Casuarina and Cabarita Beach.

Setting yourself up in this part of northern NSW allows you to enjoy three delightful beach towns for the price of one, though only one of these towns is home to a lavish Balinese-style retreat (hint: it’s Casuarina).

Smack bang in the middle of these three often overlooked beachside getaways, Casuarina is quite the hidden secret … and we got the distinct impression that locals prefer it stays that way!

This is where Gold Coast locals come to escape the tourism that floods into their city; and as soon as you step through the colossal automatic bamboo doors at Oaks Santai Resort Casuarina, you’re instantly transported to Bali.

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Elements of Byron: How to Experience the Luxury of Byron Bay

Posted by on 8:51 am in Accommodation, Australia, Blog, Luxury Lifestyle | 0 comments

Elements of Byron: How to Experience the Luxury of Byron Bay

Chris Hemsworth. Matt Damon. Natalie Imbruglia. Pat Rafter.

The golden beaches, turquoise waters, and zen mentality are just some of the reasons celebrities from all around the world are drawn to the Australian town of Byron Bay.

Byron Bay overflows with both energy and beauty, while at the same somehow offering a place where a chilled out vibe takes centre stage. Though there are two very distinct and opposite experiences here: one backpacker, one luxury.

After the latter?

Situated far away from the backpacker chaos, yet just a 10-minute drive from the colorful boutique shop windows and trendy cafes, Byron Bay’s award-winning beachfront resort Elements of Byron provides the type of experience that draws the world’s biggest celebrities.

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Glamping in Spring Beach, Tasmania: Your Base For Discovering Maria Island

Posted by on 12:21 pm in Accommodation, Australia, Blog, Luxury Lifestyle | 1 comment

Glamping in Spring Beach, Tasmania: Your Base For Discovering Maria Island

One thing I love about Tasmanian beaches is that you can often have one all to yourself. Unlike the crowds that pack Bondi, or the long line of skyscrapers that cast afternoon shadows across the Gold Coast, Tasmania’s beaches feel more natural, and you can easily walk for miles without seeing another soul.

Tasmania has many iconic beaches; Bay of Fires, Wineglass Bay, and Hazards Beach. But equally as stunning are its lesser known stretches of sand that seem to pop up out of nowhere in the many small towns that dot the coastline.

One such gem is Spring Beach.

Conveniently tucked away just over an hour’s drive from Hobart, and only 15 minutes from the ferry that connects the wildlife rich Maria Island, Spring Beach is one of Tasmania’s biggest hidden gems.

Accommodation on Maria Island itself is rustic. You can book a bunk-bed in an 1800’s convict penitentiary, or opt for primitive camping. We were as such quite thrilled to find a much more comfortable alternative.

When there’s a 3 bedroom, beachside Picturesque Cottage Rental just around the corner from the ferry terminal, who needs camping when there’s an option for luxury glamping!

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The Best Sporting Events in New South Wales You Won’t Want to Miss

Posted by on 7:00 pm in Australia, Blog | 0 comments

The Best Sporting Events in New South Wales You Won’t Want to Miss

Sport is a crucial part of the social fabric in Australia, and if you’re a fan of the spectator atmosphere, you certainly won’t be bored in New South Wales (NSW).

Nowadays, the internet comfortably allow sports fans to watch their favorite games virtually anywhere in the world, but there’s something truly magic about soaking in the atmosphere of an actual event. Physically being there, in the middle of the action, yelling and cheering among fellow Aussies.

The NSW sporting calendar is packed with electrifying events every year, with events like the Sydney to Hobart yacht race, State of Origin Rugby, and championship trials in athletics, tennis and cycling.

While there are many action packed games you can catch throughout the State, here’s a taste of some of the most premiere sports events in NSW you won’t want to miss.

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Epic Sporting Events You Shouldn’t Miss in Tasmania

Posted by on 2:06 pm in Australia, Blog | 2 comments

Epic Sporting Events You Shouldn’t Miss in Tasmania

Even for those of us who aren’t sporty ourselves, or even interested in sports, most of us still have a bucket-list of sporting events we would travel for.

The Olympics typically tops this list, followed by the World Cup, or maybe you’re more interested in hitting up the polo to try and land yourself a prince (Harry might be taken, but there are still many single European royals!)

Often it’s not even about the sport, but rather, being part of something bigger than yourself, and getting caught up in the electrifying atmosphere; staying out late with locals as buildings tremor from street celebrations; losing your voice as you scream alongside 100,000 others in a packed stadium.

Tasmania might not be the obvious choice for sporting capitol of Australia (that title goes to Melbourne), however the small island State does throw some incredibly epic annual events.

With cheap flights from all major Australian cities, the following are 5 more reasons to add Tasmania to your bucket-list (though don’t wait too long, this hidden gem of a State can only remain secret for so long!).

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The Best Countries to Live in as an Expat

Posted by on 12:05 pm in Australia, Blog, Canada, Expat Life, Germany, New Zealand, Singapore | 8 comments

The Best Countries to Live in as an Expat

While we don’t have a choice over the country we’re born in, these days we often do have control over whether or not we choose to stay.

There are 195 countries in the world today, which presents almost endless possibilities for those wishing to live overseas. And when it comes to setting up your life in a new country, most nations are very welcoming!

People move abroad for many different reasons; for business, study, wanderlust, or simply to seek better life opportunities. Either way, to experience life as part of a new culture and have the chance to discover an exotic new land is a romantic adventure quite a lot of people entertain.

If you’re considering moving abroad but haven’t yet figured out where you want to go, the following are the best countries to live in as an expat, as well as important things you need to know!

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Free and Cheap Things To Do In Byron Bay

Posted by on 12:57 pm in Australia, Blog, Budget Travel | 4 comments

Free and Cheap Things To Do In Byron Bay

Byron Bay is like nowhere else in Australia, and it’s worth visiting at least once. It may not be a big destination, but it packs plenty of punch in terms of counterculture, nature, atmosphere and fun.

Gone are the days when Byron Bay was a sleepy little hippy haven; it’s still very popular with those into the alternative scene, but on any given day it is teeming with visitors from all walks of life.

One of the great things about Byron Bay is that it doesn’t have to cost much. Those on a budget can still have a fabulous time here, as this inviting seaside town is chock-full of cheap and free activities, and surrounded by incredible nature for miles around.

Whether you want to party, dip in the lakes, waterfalls and oceans, hike through wild nature, browse the many markets or just relax in the serene vibes, you’ll find it easy in Byron Bay. Use this list for inspiration during your stay.

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Art Series The Chen: A Luxury Hotel Celebrating Australia’s Rich Multiculturalism

Posted by on 11:18 pm in Accommodation, Australia, Blog | 2 comments

Art Series The Chen: A Luxury Hotel Celebrating Australia’s Rich Multiculturalism

Australia is a county shaped by migrants; it is said that one in four Australians were born overseas, and this rich, cultural diversity is one of our greatest strengths.

While European settlers started the trend in the late 1700’s, Australia today sees migrants from more than 190 countries; from India, the UK, and, most notably, China. (Fun fact, Mandarin has become the most spoken language in Australia after English).

Australian cities have become a melting pot of cultures, and no-where is this more prevalent than the Melbourne suburb of Box Hill. Home to Melbourne’s largest Chinese population, well over half the population of Box Hill was either born in China or has Chinese ancestry. And this is a fact that Melbournians are incredibly proud of.

One hotel that has embraced and showcased this beautiful ethnic diversity is the Art Series Hotel – The Chen. Named for the Chinese born artist Zhong Chen, who migrated to Melbourne as a teenager, The Chen is a boutique hotel that celebrates not only Chen’s abstract art, but Australia’s rich multiculturalism.

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Mantra Lorne: Where to Stay on the Great Ocean Road

Posted by on 7:15 pm in Accommodation, Australia, Blog | 0 comments

Mantra Lorne: Where to Stay on the Great Ocean Road

The Great Ocean Road is one of Australia’s most scenic drives. A 250 km route that hangs precariously on soaring sea cliffs along Victoria’s coastline, it winds between pretty towns and beaches, all set against the backdrop of Australia’s few temperate rainforests.

Though for one of Australia’s most popular tourist destinations, most visitors to the area sadly see very little, and most of that through a car window. But you won’t see the best sights from your car.

While the road can technically be driven in a day, you’re doing yourself a great disservice by not setting yourself up in one of the lovely towns along the route and making that your base for several days.

Much more than a scenic highway, this region is home to a myriad of coastal tracks, rainforest trails, and hikes which connect historic seaside villages, taking in ocean views and dramatic waterfalls.

While there are several towns offering accommodation along the route, if you’re looking to stay directly on the beach, one of the best options is Mantra Lorne.

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The Watson Adelaide – Your Guide to the Adelaide Art Scene

Posted by on 8:38 pm in Accommodation, Australia, Blog | 0 comments

The Watson Adelaide – Your Guide to the Adelaide Art Scene

I often say that travel is an art. It’s not simply as easy as booking a plane ticket, hotel room, and tours. Art is how we express ourselves and showcase our creativity and uniqueness.

How we travel should be no different than how we paint, sculpt, dance, or sing. It’s not simply about finding a destination that inspires us, it should be an avenue for creating your own unique journey. And that’s what I love about Adelaide.

Yes, South Australia’s capital has many notable attractions, but this isn’t a city that defines itself by a top 10 list. I found Adelaide to be a city that prides itself more in offering unique travel experiences than pushing must see attractions down your throat.

Adelaide is a destination where expressing yourself is the focus, and that begins from the moment you check into The Watson Art Series Hotel. Australia is home to several Art Series Hotels; a brand which looks to provide travelers with artistic comfort to inspire a unique journey.

Oscar Wilde said that “life imitates art far more than art imitates life”. Art has the ability to alter our perception of life, so we were more than happy to let the The Watson Art Series Hotel alter our perception of Adelaide.

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