As we head towards winter, it’s time to think about a luxury escape in Tropical North Queensland where you can relax and feel the sand between your toes, drink cocktails and lounge around the pool. From Cairns to the Wet Tropics and the Great Barrier Reef, Tropical North Queensland has some wonderful luxury resorts to choose from.
When you’re not by the pool or on the beach, there’s plenty to see and do. From shopping in Port Douglas to an adventure in the Daintree Rainforest, there are gorges to explore, waterfalls, lakes, farms and markets. So if you’re feeling like you need a winter treat there’s a luxurious sun lounge with your name on it.
Here are our top five luxury resorts in Queensland’s tropics to splurge at.
1-One and Only Hayman Island
One and Only Hayman Island is possibly the most luxurious resort on a Queensland island. Rooms are in the Hayman, Pool and Beach Wings.
Top of the range are the Hayman Penthouses. Pool rooms have views over the massive signature pool while ground-level rooms have direct access to the pool for a lazy morning swim.
All the Penthouses have views of the Coral Sea and Whitsunday Islands. Splurge out and check into the Three-Bedroom Owner’s Penthouse.
It is a spacious abode with a large sitting room and dining area, three bedrooms, three bathrooms, kitchenette, bar and wrap around balcony. Of course it comes with complimentary in-room bar, internet access and a butler.
Fancy being marooned on a luxurious island resort on the Great Barrier Reef with all the champagne you can drink?
Voted as having the Best Leisure Facilities by Conde Nast Traveller Magazine UK and a regular on the Conde Nast Traveller Gold Lists, Lizard Island is a favourite with those who enjoy the finer things in life.
Fringed with colourful coral reefs, it’s one of the few places in Australia where you can snorkel straight off the beach and be impressed by the coral and colourful fish.
Accommodation is in a range of villas and the service is attentive yet discreet. The resort’s contemporary design is luxurious but understated, blending with its natural environment. The décor is all timber, glass and muted tones. Sliding glass doors lead out onto beachfront verandas with solid timber daybeds and deck chairs.
Unlimited French champagne, gourmet meals and fine Australian wines are included in the rate. A highlight is the seven-course degustation menu and matching wine.
Splurge on The Villa atop a ridge with the best view of Sunset Beach and the Coral Sea.
How much? The Villa costs from $5,200 a night.
3-Alamanda Palm Cove
If a pampering escape to Queensland’s spa capital sounds like your idea of bliss, then check into Alamanda Palm Cove. Located in Palm Cove, the resort is a 20-minute drive from Cairns and a day trip to the Great Barrier Reef.
Should views of the Coral Sea and palms swaying on the beach fail to instantly melt your stress away, then a pampering session at the spa will surely do the trick.
A soothing foot wipe and a herbal drink followed by skilled ministrations of a therapist ought to have you floating in seventh heaven.
Suites come in a choice of one, two and three bedrooms with floor-to-ceiling glass doors opening onto wide patios and tropical gardens.
Splurge out on the four-bedroom Alamanda suite for top-of-the-range luxury with a private swimming pool, sun terrace and barbecue.
How much? Alamanda Suite costs from $1066 a night.
Is a luxurious break on a tropical island in the Great Barrier Reef your idea of heaven? Hamilton Island’s qualia ticks all the luxury boxes. qualia is exclusive, luxurious and is right on the doorstep of the World Heritage-listed Great Barrier Reef.
A picnic lunch on a private beach where a staff member leaves you with an ice box of gourmet goodies, chilled champagne and suntan lotion is a Robinson Crusoe experience to write home about.
The most important item is the two-way radio with someone at the other end to deliver more chilled champagne whenever you need it.
The resort is located on the secluded northernmost point of the island. The spacious architect-designed timber and stone pavilions come with private sundecks or infinity-edge plunge pools.
Facilities include a library, private dining room, two bars and restaurants, two swimming pools and a fitness centre.
How much? The ultimate retreat is the $4000-a-night Beach House, which has a perfect setup for entertaining guests in the 10-seat dining room, a full-sized swimming pool and separate guesthouse.
Can you imagine having 1618 hectares of private lush tropical rainforest, manicured gardens, gushing waterfalls and a tranquil deep freshwater lake all to yourself?
Add a personal chef, housekeeper and activities manager and you have a retreat fit for movie stars, royalty and chief executives (the King of Morocco stayed here!).
A main communal house and six private South Sea-style thatched cottages are decked out with original pieces such as an antique Russian chest, African wall hangings and Tibetan temple doors.
Each cottage is unique and some have open-air garden bathrooms. The ultimate sleeping area is the Dream House with its cool limestone floors and a raised king-size bed positioned for gazing at the bay from a supine position.
The private property is bordered by 20,000 hectares of national parkland and offers complete privacy with no-one around to watch you swim or sunbake on the beach.
How much? The entire property costs $15,500 a night (minimum four night stay) and can accommodate 14 people. It includes meals and activities.
Have you been to a luxury resort in Queensland? Leave us a message and let us know what you thought.
Looking for an attraction the kids will love? Try Wildlife Habitat Port Douglas for amazing encounters with Aussie icons.
If you enjoy exploring new places, how about these two Queensland islands?