Celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, Small Luxury Hotels of the World (SLH) has earmarked the Australian market as a growth source as it seeks to expand its sizeable share of luxury travel business
SLH group executive director, Richard Hyde, says Australia is a key target for SLH both as a source market and destination.
“Australia is our fifth-largest source market globally, and the increasingly sophisticated Australian traveller who values unique, local travel experiences is also travelling for longer periods as well as spending more on accommodation with an average total spend of USD 1250, nearly double (58%) that of the average luxury traveller.”
Hyde disclosed that the top five destinations favoured by the Australian luxury traveller over the past three years include:
- United Kingdom
Domestic travel remains high, with Australians keen on holidaying at home and exploring Australia’s own travel experiences.
SLH recently brought a delegation of 12 of its hotels to Sydney. At a reception at Sydney Opera House, participating hotels ranged from eco-hideaways in New Zealand to the Hotel Eclat Beijing (housed in the Parkview Green development in Beijing’s business district); Keemala, Phuket, Thailand; Pacific Resort, Aitutaki in the Cook Islands (luxury thatched beachfront bungalows and suites); The Racha, Phuket, Thailand; The Tokyo Station Hotel, Japan (grand red-brick residence dating back to 1915, with railway connections) and Ulagalla Resort, Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka.
On the Australian scene, Hyde said wine regions such as the Margaret River (Perth) and Tasmania, where SLH hotels are present, are becoming popular destinations “with the surging interest in Australian food and wine trips for both locals and international visitors”.
“The quest for a deeper connection to a place and its people continues to be a strengthening travel goal, and SLH’s seven exclusive sanctuaries in Australia are rich in nature, local history, gourmet produce and warm hospitality.”
SLH continues to add carefully-selected properties to its line-up, which currently stands at over 520 properties in more than 80 countries, including more locations in Australia. Hyde says the brand will continue to focus on what it does best – consistently delivering exceptionally high levels of service, quality and individuality to its guests.
SLH properties in Australia include:
- Berkeley River Lodge, set between the rugged northern Kimberley coastline and the mouth of the River Berkeley, offering the chance to discover and explore one of Australia’s most isolated destinations. Guests arrive by seaplane or light aircraft to start the wilderness adventure, while 20 ultra-comfortable villas, a fine dining restaurant, a lap pool and deck overlooking the Timor Sea provide those special creature comforts.
- Bloomfield Lodge, Cairns. A sought-after exclusive retreat providing seclusion and privacy in breathtaking natural beauty. Bloomfield Lodge is uniquely set between two World Heritage sites – the longest unspoiled stretch of rainforest in Australia, Daintree Rainforest and the magnificent Great Barrier Reef.
- Injidup Spa Retreat, Margaret River, a tranquil beach spa resort surrounded by over 1200 hectares of the unspoiled Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park in the heart of the Margaret River wine district. Each secluded, French-inspired villa overlooks the ocean and offers a private plunge pool.
- Smiths Beach Resort, Margaret River, perfectly positioned on the gleaming white sands of Smiths Beach within easy access of many wonderful wineries and restaurants. This environmentally-friendly and picturesque resort is a restful sanctuary offering an array of leisure and dining experiences.
- The Dudley Boutique Hotel, Daylesford, a light and airy retreat that has welcomed guests for over 100 years. Tucked away in a blossoming spring garden, this boutique hotel is an idyllic place to take a break and truly unwind.
- Thorngrove Manor Hotel, Adelaide, with distinctive creative architecture, captivating style and contemporary influence. The romantic castle-inspired towers and fantasy turrets are clues to its artistic and flamboyant interiors, which include exquisitely crafted rooms and furniture.
- Woodbridge on the Derwent, Tasmania, a grand Georgian mansion on the banks of the Derwent River, a 30-minute drive from Hobart. With nine suites, great views over the valley and fine food, this enchanting hotel also presents special wildlife and wilderness experiences at nearby Mt Field National Park.
Edited by Peter Needham