UK Conde Nast Traveller magazine has published its 2008 Gold List – a selection of hotels showcasing the best service, rooms, food, ambience, design, location and leisure facilities. If you like to splurge on a great meal and a beautiful hotel for a special occasion, here are the three Australian finalists which topped the list in the category ‘Best for Food’.
Cape Lodge, Yallingup Western Australia is a charming and luxurious boutique hotel located in the heart of the majestic wine-growing region of Margaret River. There are 22 beautifully appointed rooms and suites as well as a 2 bedroom cottage and the main lodge with a sumptuous guest lounge. With beautiful gardens and grounds, a tennis court plus a lakesite restaurant with a 14,000 bottle cellar it is the perfect setting for a special evening with a special someone. Stay overnight for around $400.
Freycinet Lodge, Coles Bay Tasmania is considered one of Tasmania’s top eco-lodges and has won numerous environmental awards. This is no bush-camp though! With a spectacular waterfront location at the foot of the Hazards, stay in one of the 60 stylish but simple cabins and explore the Freycinet Peninsula and National Park. Enjoy a game of tennis or boules, or sit by the open wood fireplace in the lounge and sample the local boutique wine and beers. Richardson’s Bistro has an informal feel with food prepared in an open kitchen while diners enjoy the view of Coles Bay. The Bay Restaurant has one of the best wine lists in Tasmania. Both outlets make use of fresh local ingredients with a focus on seafood. Stay overnight for around $220.
Shangri-La Hotel Sydney is perfectly located in Sydney’s historical The Rocks, harbourside between the Opera House and Harbour Bridge. Rooms and suites are luxurious and spacious – with breathtaking views over the harbour or Opera House. The service is exceptional and efficient and the facilities first class – indoor pool, fitness centre, spa, sauna and steam room. Altitude, the signature restaurant on Level 36 has dramatic floor to ceiling windows providing outstanding harbour views. There is also a 16 guest private dining room for an exclusive intimate gathering. Other outlets include The Gloucester Street Pantry for a quick snack; the authentic Sydney sports bar Harts Pub; Cafe Mix for buffet breakfast and themed dinners; the New York inspired Blu Horizon Bar and the Lobby Lounge where you can enjoy a cocktail while listening to the resident pianist. Slick, Chic, Hip. Stay overnight for around $260.
International hotels to be awarded in the ‘Best for Food’ category include the Ritz-Carlton Tokyo, the Taj Mahal Palace and Tower Mumbai, and the amazing Evason Ana Mandara and Six Senses Spa in Nha Trang Vietnam.