Gibraltar Country Club Hotel and Spa in Australia’s Southern Highlands is a stylishly modern Sydney city escape, set amongst rolling greenery, sun-lit lakes and lush pines. Of course (I mean of golf-course) – It also happens to be a golfers paradise!
Gibraltar Country Club Hotel & Spa is located in Bowral – an antique town, filled with arty people and scenic views. Annual flower shows bring yearly visitors to what is considered one of the prettiest café and garden communities in Australia. Gibraltar Country Club Hotel & Spa, easy to find, is enormous on sight. Perched majestically on a beautiful golf field, it’s easy to see why not only golfers are attracted to weekends away here.
Quite modernly styled, Gibraltar Country Club Hotel & Spa has only recently opened – meaning everything in the vicinity is new and shiny. Friendly staff greets you at reception and give a guided tour of the grounds. Adorning the walls is a collection of mostly Australian themed etchings, paintings and drawings – hand selected by the hotel owner. An owner who clearly has design taste – for he played a large role in the entire hotel décor. Simple stylish elegance and comfort are designed into your stay. Spacious rooms face directly out to the golf course landscape, with artwork, heavenly bed, large deluxe spa bath, flat screen TV and all the typical modern trimmings highlighting your happiness.
Restaurant and bar
In-room dining is available, or dine at the Gibraltar Grill, where a perfectly cooked succulent steak awaits – if you choose, from the grill. Meet the locals at Harvey’s Bar, which invites people in from town on weekend soirees.
New equipment is decked out in the gym, including exercise bike, treadmill and weights. Rolled towels and reclining lounge give that added hotel glamour, and an indoor heated pool is perfect if you’ve spent the day on the course. What a great way to unwind!
Weddings & Business trips
Enormously high ceilinged conference rooms are available for functions and weddings, if your trip is for this reason – you are in for a treat. All function rooms look out over the magnificent golfing grounds. Sip your tea, and watch the sun catch light from the duck’s favorite lake, while your meetings are underway.
The hotel spa is appropriately named The Bowral Day Spa, for you will want to spend all day here. Walking into a low-lit lounge to fill in your information form and sip detoxing tea, your therapist soon escorts you to a personal room for changing into a soft lux dressing gown and slippers. Treatments compliment natural surroundings by embracing ancient indigenous techniques and products, as inspired in the Australian LI’TYA range. LI’TYA uses mud powders, local infused oils like lemon myrtle or bush rose. Serenading your senses are ancient indigenous chants set to modern beats and piano sounds. At your choice, treatment will begin with a welcoming smoking ceremony from Australian bush barks. I tried the hot stone massage on my visit. Stones from the west of Australia’s land have been hand crafted, and are heated to 38 degrees before the therapists glides them over my body, kneading away any tension and inducing a relaxed state of mind. Pure Bliss!
The Southern Highlands region, being one of Australia’s most picturesque tourist destinations, wouldn’t be complete without quintessential romantic vineyards scattered throughout. I visited the Centennial Vineyards for a spot of wine tasting, with afternoon lunch at the Centennial Vineyards Restaurant. A dessert wine aptly named 2009 Autumn Late Harvest Chardonnay, (which yes, I selected because of my namesake!) won numerous awards and accidently found itself purchased by me for later consumption! Well, who could resist sweet wine offering a beautifully balanced palette of white peach, nectarine, and subtle caramel/vanilla aromas!
The Centennial Vineyards Restaurant offers European barn style elegance; with high beams, antique farming equipment and wagon wheel props embedded in the decor to create an amazingly charismatic ambience. Dine on fine delicacies, I recommend The signature Highland tasting platter, as you glance out a window showing baby lambs and sheep roaming sunlit vineyards.
The Southern Highlands are an easy hour and a half away from Sydney city; unless you’re travelling at peak ‘weekend escape time’ being 6pm Friday night, in which case definitely include traffic time in your itinerary. Or opt for the easy 2-hour train rides which stops in the heart of Bowral town.