GORGEOUS VINEYARD STAYS
Get out your finery and spend a night at a winery
1 MONA PAVILIONS, HOBART, TASMANIA
When MONA – Australia’s largest private museum – burst onto the tourism scene, it not only repositioned Tassie as an edgy art destination but also launched a new era for winery hotels. Besides housing some of Australia’s most exciting modern art, the Museum of Old and New Art site is home to Tassie’s second oldest vineyard, Moorilla. The vines produced their first crop in 1962, almost 40 years before MONA opened its doors. And there’s nowhere better to enjoy a drop on the property than at the stunning MONA Pavilions, a collection of eight artistically designed villas looking out over the River Derwent.
2 JACKALOPE, MORNINGTON PENINSULA, VICTORIA
Such a game-changer was the opening of the $40 million five-star boutique hotel set in Willow Creek Vineyard, that within weeks of opening last year, it had already been named Australia’s Hotel of the Year. Jackalope’s avant-garde design features floor-to-ceiling windows throughout the 46-room hotel, private terraces, a 30m infinity pool and spa. Combined with a hatted restaurant on site, it’s fair to say Jackalope has put Merricks North (on Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula) on the map. And it’s just chapter one for Jackalope Hotels, with the company’s next venture a 32-suite designer hotel in Melbourne’s Flinders Lane.
3 SANCTUARY BY SIRROMET, MT COTTON, QUEENSLAND
Queensland may be better known for Bundy and XXXX than its wine, but Sirromet Wines is working hard to fix that. And camping holidays may have a reputation for being hard work, but Sirromet aims to rewrite that too. Queensland’s first winery glamping experience opened at the site, 40 minutes from Brisbane, in June. They’re not just tents, they’re an “evolution of glamping”. It may look secluded, but you won’t go hungry here – there’s a cellar door with cafe, plus two restaurants (Tuscan Terrace and fine diner Restaurant Lurleen’s) on site. Already, 18 tented pavilions have opened, with plans to grow that to 54 spread across the 8ha site.
4 NASHDALE LANE, ORANGE, NSW
Camping out among the vines in a region known for its chilly nights and occasional snowfall might seem a strange decision, but when your tent is a luxury safari-style number warmed by a wood fire, and there’s easy access to the cool-climate wines that make the Orange region famous, it’s a no-brainer. Nashdale Lane is home to NSW’s first vineyard glamping experience, with its two tented cabins kitted out with hardwood flooring, a four-poster queen bed, and full bathroom with monsoon shower. The latest addition to the winery site is its cellar door, which opened last month in a repurposed 70-year-old shed.
5 BALGOWNIE ESTATE, BENDIGO, VICTORIA
A bubble bath takes on a whole new meaning at Balgownie Estate Bendigo, where guests can enjoy a glass of Balgownie bubbles while taking a dip in an open-air tub on a private deck overlooking the vineyard. The winery launched its new accommodation earlier this year, and the most glamorous of its 15 tents features a clawfoot bath, along with a four-poster bed and internal bathroom. To complement the chic digs, the on-site restaurant serves provincial French fare. And if tents – even the fancy kind – aren’t your thing, the winery homestead also offers accommodation, plus there are two on-site cottages.