The Best Hideaways for Glam Group Holidays

All of the extra touches you'd expect at a top hotel, with intimacy of a private pad.

The private chef is coming at 6pm. The babysitter is booked for 7pm. There’s champagne on ice ready for sunset. It’s going to be a good weekend. The holiday house has come a long way. No longer shall we sweat it out in fibro beach shacks and country sheds to spend time under the same roof as our tribe.

This new wave of weekenders is bridging the gap between hotels and houses with five-star service, lashings of amenities and not a sofa bed in sight. Better than a hotel, though, you and your group have the run of the place. Intergenerational families can spend time connecting in privacy and friend groups can hang out well into the night. Kids are free to be kids, adults can slink off for quiet moments and when you all come together by your private pool, no-one will photobomb your group Insta moment. 

sydney sanctuary

Sydney Sanctuary 

Airbnb Luxe, the brand’s prestigious new tier, pairs the platform’s best group-holiday accommodation options with a Trip Designer to smooth over check-in and arrange massages, personal trainers and more. This absolute knockout of a house overlooking Sydney’s Northern Beaches is just the start. 


satellite island

Island Dreaming 

Perfect for Tasmanian trysts, satellite is a private island that suggests luxury is about privacy and connection to nature instead of pure glitz. There’s an innkeeper on hand to distribute picnic hampers, light your fire and attend to your every whim, plus the team can arrange for renowned chef and author Sarah Glover to cook up a feast for you over an open fire. It’s not safe for kids under 12, but bigger kids can haul up in the bunk room. 


mona farm

Farmhouse Fabulous 

Mona Farm, roughly halfway between Sydney and Melbourne, is the ultimate family reunion hotspot. The farm offers a village of contained accommodation options on 50 dreamy hectares including a historic five-bedroom homestead, three-bedroom coach house, one-bedroom cottages and an upcoming stable that will sleep 18. Each home is super luxe and showcases the owner’s incredible contemporary art and furniture collections. 


hillview homestead

Next-level Gold Coast 

When Cate Blanchett was in town to shoot on the Gold Coast, she stayed at Hillview Homestead, a heart-stopping country-home hotel by Luxico. The Luxico concierge team know how to splash out the VIP treatment. The homes on their list are all provisioned to five-star standards with luxurious linens, a pre-stocked fridge and kids’ supplies. They also partner with top chefs for special dinners, and the in house concierge team are available 24-7 to book a table or sort a surf lesson with a pro- nothing is too hard. 


byron bay abodes

Byron Calling 

On NSW’S North Coast, Byron Beach Abodes is bringing all of our free-spirited boho-chic dreams to life. The Cabin sleeps four and is a minutes walk to Clarkes Beach. The Bower is bigger and incredible for a girl’s trip or family trip. What’s on offer on the property is a five-bedroom cottage, four-bedroom house and studio barn for the recluse of the group. There are also suites for couples and a large pool. Kids under 12 stay free, but it’s a schoolies-free zone – the minimum check in age for the main guest on the reservation is 21.


Road Tripping 

CAR: Hyundai Venue Go

ROUTE: Braidwood, NSW

We’re about an hour out of Sydney along the Hume Highway when RNB Fridays crackles to oblivion. Two taps later and my podcast queue is loaded on the touchscreen monitor thanks to my new best friend, Apple CarPlay. As the dulcet tones of Modern Love fill the car through six speakers, the scenery suddenly becomes mistier and more tranquil. Using voice control to switch between my iTunes library and audiobook collection keeps things interesting through long stretches of cruise control. The road candy gets prettier the moment we turn off at Goulburn through bushranger country to Braidwood. We take a dirt road when the mud mode comes on as we glide through a puddle without loosing traction (theres also snow and sand modes). About three hours by car from Sydney and seven hours away from Melbourne, Braidwood is the pit stop of our road-trip dreams. The heritage listed town is lined with Georgian architecture and farm gates offering fresh produce on an honesty-box system. The town centre boomed in the gold rush but has settled to a leisurely pace, though it still offers city slickers good coffee (try Deadwood or The Albion), a great restaurant (Casanova’s) and gourmet provider (Provisions). The perfect car for this journey is the Hyundai Venue Go (from $23,632). It’s a compact SUV but we overpacked thanks to roof racks and spilt-folding rear seats. There are actual pigs in the loose- as the talented roadster’s Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist eases on the brakes. 

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