Whether you've got children or not, sometimes it's nice to escape the pitter patter of little feet for a few days. Don't let somebody else's brats spoil your adults-only getaway. Play it safe and choose a hotel that 'doesn't cater for children'. In other words no kids allowed!
1860 is 'Man From Snowy River' meets 'Home Beautiful', a lovingly restored timber cattelemen's hut that's rented out to one couple at a time. 1860 was built in, you guessed it, 1860 but a stay here is hardly roughing it. Re-imagined blacksmith bellows make for an avant garde coffee table and there's a huge stone fireplace flanked by chocolate brown leather lounges. Rustic yet incredibly stylish, 1860 is ideal for surprising the man in your life there's not a doily or chintz cushion in sight.
2. Shizuka Ryokan, Hepburn Springs, Victoria
Leave your shoes and your cares at the door of Shizuka Ryokan, a traditional Japanese inn located in the spa capital of Victoria. Traditional decor soothes the senses, soft tatami matting is gentle underfoot and water flows soothingly in your own private Japanese garden. Staff replace the tables and chairs with authentic bedding each evening and prepare a bath with fragrant cedar-wood dipping bowls, mineral bath salts, flickering candles and scented soaps. Want another good reason to stay here? Futons don't have creaky springs.
@VDL was once a storage facility for the Van Diemen's Land Co, a former bluestone warehouse which shaped much of the region's history but these days original artworks rather than bales of wool fill the interior. Gorgeous, expensive interior design flourishes abound it's definitely
not suitable for kids. Park your car and forget about it; every funky art gallery, cafe and restaurant is within walking distance.
El Questro Homestead is an all-inclusive uber-lodge perched atop the Chamberlain Gorge in the Western Australian wilderness. Catering to a maximum of half a dozen couples, it feels like this beautiful place is yours alone most of the time. Take a private tour of Zebedee Springs, find the perfect boab tree for a picnic or sit back with a sundowner in the communal guest lounge. Drinks are top shelf and guests are encouraged to relax and help themselves. You may have to sell
the kids to stay here, prices start from $1240 per night with a minimum 2 night stay.
Paradise Bay Eco Escape, an environmentally friendly resort in the beautiful Whitsundays, proves there's no need to rough it when it comes to travelling responsibly. Catering to a maximum of 20 guests, this all-inclusive adults-only retreat offers an intimate escape that's akin to being shipwrecked on a beautiful tropical island, albeit in the lap of luxury. Dinner is served under the stars, matched with wines from the owner's cellar of Australian boutique favourites, and days are spent sailing around the Whitsundays in the resort's private yacht.
Built by convict labour and licensed as an inn in 1844 this Georgian property located just outside Launceston has been transformed into an intimate French provincial style B&B. Beautifully appointed suites overlook the secluded gardens and there's an on-site cooking school offering hands-on classes most weekends. Much of the food comes from nearby heritage farm 'Haggerstone', something which makes staying here an experience to savour.
Surrounded by pristine rainforest and towering gum trees, these secluded, self-contained stone cottages set the scene for a romantic stay. Witches Falls National Park is located just across the road and myriad antique stores beckon. Pick up a bottle of local bubbly to enjoy in the spa then relax with a Ripple Chocolate Massage
or snuggle up in front of the fireplace with a bottle of red. Self catering is easy thanks to the attractive private BBQ area attached to each cottage.
8. The Louise, Barossa Valley, South Australia
The Louise is a hotel hideaway for food and wine connoisseurs, a luxurious 15-suite culinary nirvana attached to an acclaimed Barossa restaurant and surrounded by world-class wineries. Each room comes with a complimentary gift of tawny port and house-made cookies and a lavish king size bed that's almost too good to leave. Enjoy uninterrupted views across the adjacent vineyards from a private terrace with a tasting platter from Appellation and a glass of something special. Stay mid-week and you'll save over a hundred bucks.
Located on the shores of a splendid horseshoe bay, Kims Beach Hideaway has been a favourite weekend escape for posh Sydney-siders for over 100 years. Choose a luxuriously appointed beachfront bungalow or a private villa hidden amongst the ancient Norfolk Pines. Breakfast, lunch and dinner is included in the tariff and announced with the ringing of a ship's bell. Kims is perfect for an upmarket beach break without the school holiday hordes.
10. Somewhere Unique, Hunter Valley, New South Wales
Two architecturally stunning cottages make up Somewhere Unique, a secluded adults-only hideaway surrounded by native Australian bushland. Appointments are top-notch – think heated towel rails, handmade soaps and divine Natio bath products and extras like complimentary bike hire and a welcome bottle of wine are considered standard. The lavish breakfast basket packed with smokehouse bacon, free-range eggs, handmade jam, natural muesli and loads of other goodies gets rave reviews.