Guest blogger Sarah Boisvert profiles a luxury eco resort in Tasmania, Australia
When rain and fog took their toll on my psyche during my Cambridge days, I found my thoughts turning to someplace warm and beautiful. It’s trendy now for many wild, scenic areas to claim to be ecotourism sites, but for me, it’s important to be sure the resort really is environmentally-friendly and has put in place properly green measures to ensure sustainability. Here’s the scoop on one venue that meets my high standards for eco travel.
Tasmania, southeast of the Australian coast, is a series of islands that has a temperate maritime climate, so there are rarely vast extremes in temperature. The Saffire Freycinet resort located at Coles Bay is not just a nature resort in a spectacular setting. As early as 1929, the original site was used as a caravan park and backpackers hostel, resulting in considerable erosion of the landscape. The award-winning facility works to restore the area to its natural splendor and is in the process of replanting over 30,000 native species to encourage revitalization of the land. This commitment to restoring the eco-system to its natural state is part of the resort’s core principles.
Everywhere on Saffire Freycinet, architects used natural local products such as sustainably harvested wood and beautiful stone. Colours reflect the hues found in the surroundings, including the gemstones mined here. Building designs appear to bring nature indoors and take advantage of external elements. While the well-appointed Luxury Suites and Signature Suites with their view of Great Oyster Bay are a beautiful way to enjoy the resort, the Private Pavilions provide an added level of privacy. Personal meal preparation by your own private chef can be arranged in your ensuite kitchen, and the Pavilion’s courtyard boasts a personal plunge pool.
Activities – outdoor fun, meditation and spa indulgence
Resort Spa – The world-class spa is a testament to the creative use of natural local products. Unique treatments draw from the healing powers of local sapphires that range in color from blue to green to yellow. Yoga mats are provided in each suite, and meditation classes are also available.
Outdoor Fun – Complimentary in your Saffire Freycinet experience are guided tours that range from walks in the spectacular Freycinet National Park with commentary to visits to a local winery or oyster farm. The resort also has its own private archery range with trained instructors. Also, there are kayaks, mountain bikes, kites and other sources of entertainment for the entire family.
Signature experiences let you explore the surrounding area more extensively. There are trips aboard the resort’s especially designed boat, Saffire, with fishing or stops at beaches, as well as exciting tours on Quad Bikes on four-wheel-drive tracks.
Whether you want to relax in your Pavilion or get your heart pumping both from physical activity and the beauty of the landscape, there’s something for everyone’s taste.
Menus, which change daily at the Saffire Freycinet resort, begin with homegrown produce and local ingredients. Classically trained Executive Chef Hugh Whitehouse says, “In the kitchen, I use premium local ingredients sourced from an established network of Tasmanian and specifically East Coast growers. I believe that showcasing the best of the season allows us to offer a more balanced and textured dining experience.”
At the end of the day, the Saffire Freycinet resort is an eco-friendly destination that takes its mission seriously while offering a 5-star holiday experience.
Recommended for… Travellers looking for a luxurious accommodation; there are plenty of activities for an active family, although the privacy aspect lends itself well to honeymooners or romantic interludes.
Be aware that… It is a high-end resort so add-ons are dear
- Commitment to restoring natural ecosystem of surrounding area
- Use of sustainably harvest wood and local materials
- Meals use homegrown or locally-sourced produce
- Low impact activities on offer making the most of the natural environment
For more information and booking visit www.saffire-freycinet.com.au
About the author: Sarah Boisvert has travelled the world over, as evidenced by her two million frequent flier miles. She has resided in both the British and American university cities of Cambridge and misses English delicacies such as Spotted Dick. And she is always sure to check the online reputation of a resort before she stays there.