A hidden gem of relaxation in rural Southern Queensland
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Activity adventure | History & culture | Natural world
Only an hour’s drive inland from Brisbane brings you to Lockyer Valley and Spicers Hidden Vale. Here, Spicers’ country retreat sits on 12,000 acres of true Australian bush. Make use of the hotel’s knowledgeable local experts on a guided hike or mountain bike adventure or simply pick up a map from reception and take to one of the area’s many popular trails yourself. Alternatively, four-wheel drive tours take guests through the region’s forest to try and get a look at some of the local wildlife and livestock.
Carefully restored cottages complete with traditional Australian homestead design are scattered through the estate’s country grounds. Accommodation starts with Valley View Rooms that offer uninterrupted views from a private balcony. Colonial cottages with large lounge rooms are perfect for groups and overlook the falling grounds, over the pool and onto the valley itself. For standalone cottages, look to the Luxury and Heritage Suites, which feature fireplaces, wide verandas and spa baths.
The retreat’s one-hatted Homage restaurant takes full advantage of its arable surrounds. Staff handpick seasonal vegetables from the market garden and select beef and Freshwater Cray from the estate’s farm meaning the restaurant’s sophisticated French cuisine has a distinctly Australian twist. From gourmet takes on homely breakfasts to experimental light lunches, Homage offers a unique dining experience. For dinner, either order à la carte or sample a collection of the best the kitchen has to offer with a comprehensive tasting menu. If you’re keen to explore the hiking trails, be sure to take advantage of the boutique picnic hampers available.
The estate has a full range of amenities, ensuring that you can do as much, or as little, as you like. Aside from hiking and biking, there’s also a tennis court, two pools and a shooting academy onsite with archery and clay pigeon shooting on offer. For something a bit more extravagant, book ahead for a hot air balloon flight with views over the Scenic Rim, Somerset and Ipswich regions. However, if you’re in the ‘as little’ category, the hotel’s country cottage spa has a range of treatments to ease even the most stubborn of aches. If that doesn’t work, look to the bar.
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