Too often we feel overworked, over stimulated and in desperate need of an amazing holiday to refresh and revitalise ourselves. The unfortunate reality is that for many of us, work and life commitments make it difficult to plan long restful getaways in far off locations where we can switch off, recharge and create lasting memories.
For some of us, our work means travelling long distances and working across multiple time zones. Spending many hours in airports and on aeroplanes and nights in hotel rooms. The idea of packing another suitcase to jump on another long flight and stay in another hotel seems more like a chore than reward!
Cue an obsession with short staycations. Is a staycation the ultimate luxury?
If luxury is simply a state of mind, the ultimate luxury may well be time spent surrounded by what you know well and love. Having time to enjoy your favourite neighbourhood haunts, discovering new places in your home city, gazing out upon rolling green hills, or a windy jagged coastline a short distance from home with nothing to do other than enjoy time spent with loved ones. A sense of familiarity and locality is restful and the opportunity to disconnect and refresh with minimal cost and effort, enticing.
There are some truly amazing homestays, lodges, day spas and retreats on our individual doorsteps (some featuring our gorgeous bathware!), which offer unparalleled weekend getaway experiences for tourists as well as locals.
We asked 7 of our industry friends about their favourite staycation location. Read about how they choose to relax and spend their downtime. Hopefully it inspires your next short break.
Our fave staycation is at the beach house, right on the Atlantic Ocean on the eastern-most tip of Long Island. It’s near the bucolic town of New York is the perfect getaway and hideaway from the bustle of NYC. What makes it so desirable and compelling for us is the louche, bare-foot living aspect of the house on the beach.
As soon as you step outside, your feet immediately makes direct contact with the fine, sugary-textured sand. Coupled with the salty, sea air, it brings back those childhood moments of long, hot summer days. It almost seem to never end and this feeling somehow, mitigates the time-starved lives we’re all engaged in today.
As Founder and Managing Director of apaiser, I have the good fortune to travel extensively on international business trips, but some of the most relaxing and enjoyable times are the small mini breaks or staycations close to my home in Melbourne. Here I can forget the passport and immigration queues and instead pack a small bag and head out to my car instead of a plane.
On my most recent staycation, my partner and I set out to recharge at the Lon Retreat. This stunning luxurious sandstone hotel, set on more than 200 acres of rural farmland in Point Lonsdale Victoria, certainly indulged all our senses.
With panoramic views of the ocean, our room decked out in earthy tones, instantly set an aura of calm. Coupled with a long soak in one our apaiser Lunar Baths and a couple of glasses of champagne, my hectic life and stress melted away. Unfortunately, such brief moments of pleasure pass too swiftly, but next time the prospect of the on-site mineral spa beckons me to return!
My ideal getaway from Sydney is to Kangaroo Valley, a property I designed and completed in 2007 for some dear friends who allow me to use it as my own. Ooralba sits on a hill in Kangaroo valley and it has an immediate calming effect on you as you wind up the drive passing the olives. The clouds and the fog roll in front of you…it has a microclimate of its own, out of the wind in mid-winter I can be in shorts, gathering produce form the garden or walking the hill to the pie shop below. The gardens are amazing, and you never want to leave when you arrive…
For me, my greatest love is to cook for family and friends, often all in the kitchen together with wine and chat and music. My life designing hotels involves lots of travel and it’s great to find solace in a location so close to home.
Recently the property became available for rental and we are assisting to style some beautiful private events there.
Halcyon House is my go-to for a beach-side getaway and I often go for a night or two when I need a little break. Nightfall Camp in Queensland is my mountain getaway. It’s hard not to feel renewed and reinvigorated after a bit of glamping beside the crystal-clear waters of Christmas Creek and hidden away amongst the trees of the ancient Lamington National Park. Pure bliss.
I am based in Downtown NYC. Because I am constantly on the road, my favorite staycation is a day being a flâneur with my husband in our own neighborhood. We like to start with strong coffee, esoteric magazines, and vegan banana bread at Yours Truly on Spring Street before a languid wander through various galleries and shops. We often end up at an outdoor table at Vandal, on the Bowery, for a bottle of frosty rose and a selection from their tasty vegan menu for lunch. On other rare staycation days it might be a wander through nearby Chinatown, meditation or tapping on our roof deck, and an hour or two meandering through the excellent McNally Jackson bookshop on Prince Street. These are days that I reconnect with our amazing city and I cherish them.
We don’t really do staycations – we quite like just being in our own homes. When we have guests in town, we usually put them up at the PARKROYAL on Pickering, or the Oasia Hotel Downtown, because they are interested in experiencing our buildings. The hotels are also in really convenient locations and we think they offer something unique that you can’t necessarily find outside of Singapore: lush skyrise greenery and a really “tropical feeling” in the middle of the city. It’s a really biophilic environment even though you’re surrounded by skyscrapers.
For a staycation I often opt for Jackalope Hotel in summer as they have a great swimming pool, and in winter Port Phillip Estate is a favourite for their luxurious rooms.