Laid Back Beach Luxury at The Reef House in Australia’s Palm Cove

All Images Credit The Reef House

In Northern Queensland along the endless miles of coastline is where you’ll find the beachfront hamlet of Palm Cove. But be advised, Palm Cove is not for everyone. It is a mature and sophisticated corner of the world sans mass tourism, blingy beach bars, and fast-food restaurants. What Palm Cove offers is a place to slow down, rest, and relax while soaking in the balmy weather, swaying palm trees, and sun and sand of Northern Queensland’s tropical coast. The Reef House - M Gallery Collection, is Palm Cove’s quintessential boutique resort, steeped in history and tradition, and ideally suited for a guest looking for a holiday that is a bit more refined and exclusive.

Steps away from the palm tree-lined beach and the Coral Sea is Palm Cove’s most treasured resort. The colonial-style hotel is a throwback to an era when a holiday was more about doing less than doing more. Where time with your loved one was the focus as well as rest, relaxation, and rejuvenation. In an instant, that feeling begins to set in, with a greeting from the staff who, throughout the stay, ensures that each guest feels welcome, looked after, and taken care of with an endless offering of attentive service.

The hotel is exactly what many will seek in a tropical holiday. The plantation-style boutique resort is set on a manicured tropical garden filled with verdant palms, hundred-year-old melaleuca trees,  colorful flowers and several vintage whitewashed buildings facing the coastline. The Reef House offers 67 well-appointed rooms and suites, two pools, a highly acclaimed day spa, and one of the top restaurants in the area.   

The Reef House is steeped in history and tradition that guests experience throughout the stay. The property was originally built in the 1950s as a private residence later to become a popular holiday retreat for famous and well-to-do Australians and international travelers. In 1958 the Reef House was the private residence of Brigadier Thomas who welcomed his guests to feel at home. The sophisticated hospitality of that bygone era remains today with an array of complimentary special touches from the pre-dinner cocktails and canapés, daily activities, and even refreshing sorbet severed to guests lounging by the pool. The resort offers a convivial country club vibe where well-heeled guests mingle while sharing travel stories as they sip on their Gin and Tonics. 

Palm Cove is ideally located in Tropical North Queensland within a 25-minute drive to Cairns but delightfully far away from the city’s manic pace. It is a simple town, fronted by the Coral Sea and with just the right number of restaurants, boutiques, and art galleries along the town’s main street, the Williams Esplanade. Any time of day, and especially at sunset, couples, holding hands, stroll along the walkway, sharing whispers while taking in the natural beauty of the area.

The accommodations feature colonial beach house inspired interiors and range from spacious rooms to self-contained villas and apartments. The Verandah King room is ideal for romantic couples with tropical-inspired décor, muted white walls, terracotta tile floors, and Balinese design touches.

Guest will also enjoy time spent on the outdoor balcony overlooking the pool below. It is really more of an outdoor living space with teak lounge chairs, a table, and a kitchenette with a wet sink.  The space is ideal for morning coffee overlooking the grounds and sea beyond or for a private dinner at night.

The Reef House offers fantastic dining experiences as well and has collected a cadre of awards and accolades from purveyors of fine dining. The location is exquisite, overlooking the esplanade, palm-lined beach, and the sea beyond. Guests dine on the wood deck terrace, under the stars, with candles and fairy lights adding to the romantic ambiance.

The focus of the cuisine is farm to table and paddock to plate with fresh and local ingredients prepared with European gourmet technique and presentation. Palm Cove is located close to the Tablelands which is also known as Australia’s food basket and produces exceptional produce from fruits and vegetables to beef and dairy. The Reef House is also located by the sea, so the bounty of fresh seafood is exceptional as well as fresh-caught prawns, crab, and reef fish. The wine list features 250 regional and international labels that pair well with the menu, especially with suggestions from the knowledgeable sommelier.   

The Reef House offers an environment made for rest and relaxation. However, those looking for adventure will be spoiled for choice with options at sea or in the nearby tropical nature. The endless waterfalls in the region are legendary and within a few hours' drive and well worth a few hours of exploration. Palm Cove is also located near the undersea wonder of the Great Barrier Reef and there are numerous ways to explore it from scuba diving to snorkeling and by glass-bottom boats. The affable concierge is knowledgeable and more than willing to give advice and to arrange a day of fun activities from sunset sails, helicopter tours over the reef, or perhaps a day on a private island.  

The Reef House also offers a wide range of complementary activities from yoga and water aerobics classes, cocktail mixology classes, or the use of bikes. For those looking for a deeper level of relaxation, the spa offers a wide range of rejuvenation and wellness services from massage to skin and beauty treatments.   

The Reef House offers an all but extinct holiday experience from a bygone era. A time when service was at the forefront and when the staff made each guest feel like their personal house guest. The ambiance is of colonial elegance and casual charm in a club-like environment where the little things are taken care of and where guests can do as much or as little as they want. The amenities and features make it modern, but the service and traditions are rare and from yesteryear, slowed down and special. In a world where Instagrammer-trendy hotels, big and blingy resorts, or soulless mega-corporate hotels are the norm, The Reef House is a breath of fresh air in one of the most beautiful parts of the world.  

Glenn Harris

Glenn Harris is an accomplished journalist focusing on international travel, fine dining, and luxury lifestyle events. His wanderlust has taken him to over 105 countries where he is constantly straying off the beaten path uncovering new and exotic finds. He particularly enjoys seeking out lesser known travel gems and places to stay, dine, or experiences to capture. ...(Read More)

Related Articles

Around the web