Melbourne has certainly made its mark on Australia’s map as one of the coolest places around, but even proud Melburnians have to agree that a weekend out of the city is necessary every so often. Fortunately, the Mornington Peninsula is just an hour’s drive away.
From dreamy hideaways in Red Hill to swanky B&Bs in picturesque Rye, we’ve scouted some of the peninsula’s most beautiful hotels to unwind in for your next weekend away. Now all that’s left for you to do is put your feet up and breathe in the regional serenity.
Lindenderry at Red Hill
Nothing quite fits the narrative of a city escape more than lush, rolling hills flanked by vineyards and native gums. You can find all of this at Lindenderry. Positioned within eight hectares worth of vineyards, Lindenderry is a boutique hotel that prides itself on strong attention to detail from start to finish. Balcony Suites are the signature rooms, offering ensuites with spa baths, floor-to-ceiling windows, and crackling open fires to snuggle up beside.
For some quality fare, head to Linden Tree Restaurant. The à la carte restaurant celebrates seasonal produce, and carefully pairs this with more than 200 Australian and international wines to wash everything down with. Our pick is to keep things local, and go for one of Red Hill’s acclaimed Pinots.
For something special, Lindenderry also offers vineyard picnics which comprise a blanket, a hamper, and a bottle of wine – could things get anymore romantic?
Lakeside Villas at Crittenden
Fancy the idea of staying in an overwater bungalow? At Lakeside Villas you can do just that – well kind of. While the villas here aren’t typically like those found in the Maldives or Bora Bora, they are suspended over a lake, giving the impression of gently floating over water. Offering just three villas within the Crittenden Estate vineyard, this place is all about seclusion at its best.
After a day sightseeing on the peninsula, return to your villa which is appointed with all the essentials for an indulgent stay. We’re talking about a dreamy king-size bed, APPELLES bathroom amenities, and an authentic wood heater. What better way to conclude your afternoon than by nestling up beside a fire with your beau or belle, watching the evening descend over the lake outside?
Come morning, you can enjoy a gourmet hamper of eggs, bacon and Red Hill Muesli on your north-facing deck, then make use of the first two complimentary wine tastings offered in the vineyard.
Arthur’s Superb Views
With a name like Arthur’s Superb Views, you wouldn’t expect anything less than first-class views at this establishment. Nestled just below the summit of Arthur’s Seat, this elegant B&B offers unparalleled views of Port Phillip Bay and the Melbourne skyline.
While the panorama may initially steal the show, the luxurious suites certainly make a statement for themselves. Designed specifically as an exclusive couple’s retreat, this is the kind of place that simply beckons romance.
The B&B offers four suites, but for some true indulgence opt for the Bowen Spa Suite. Here you can appreciate your very own balcony with outdoor furniture that’s perfect for enjoying your complimentary breakfast hamper of muesli and yoghurt.
If you want to heat things up, there’s no better place than a bubbling spa, and in this suite you get just this – plus there’s the added bonus of sweeping coastal views outside too. While the peninsula offers a plethora of outdoor activities and sights, we’d forgive you for never wanting to leave this place!
Boathouse Resort Motel
Indulgence doesn’t have to come with an expensive price tag. If you’re looking for the perfect place to stay for the weekend without breaking the bank, Boathouse Resort Motel certainly delivers. The weatherboard, triangular-shaped studios and suites are reminiscent of typical bathing boxes on the sand. The exterior blue and yellow aesthetic evokes a nautical vibe, while the contemporary interior screams inner city Melbourne – albeit without the city frenzy.
Various suites and studios are available but if you’re travelling with the totss in tow, go for the Retreat. Offering three rooms, which come with either double or bunk bedding, this is the kind of place that even has enough space for pooch to come along too.
Catch up on some quality family time in the spacious lounge and dining room, then whip up a storm in your very own fully-equipped kitchen. Although the peninsula is famed for its golden beaches and prime surf breaks, you can keep things tame for the little ones in the motel’s private swimming pool.
Let’s face it, Melburnians are pretty attached to their city. Whether its marveling at local street art or sipping a turmeric latte at a new hideaway café, the Melbourne-vibe couldn’t be any riper than it is today. So, to encourage Melburnians to venture out of the city for the weekend, Aquabelle owners, Donna and Vesna have created some pretty hip apartments in Rye, likely to remedy any temporary homesickness.
And it seems as though no one’s complaining, as Aquabelle Apartments has won numerous accolades for quality accommodation on the peninsula.The seven apartments each reflect a unique style, with a modern décor and Scandinavian-style furnishings. Neutral greys are paired with warm violets, while black and white striped cushions add that perfect dose of pizzazz.
After a day of hiking through Cape Schanck National Park, rest tired muscles in your super dreamy, egg-shaped bath. While we love everything about Aquabelle, we have to say we’ve fallen pretty smitten with the bathroom – think pale blue tiles, glass doors, and Aesop bathroom amenities.
Sunny Side Up B&B
While most people have grown accustomed to poached eggs these days, the sunny side up term still reigns strong – this time around though in the form of an exclusive B&B. Situated in the heart of Rye, this four-star B&B elegantly pairs a typically Australian façade with a more Scandinavian-inspired interior. Housed in a period weatherboard house, this is THE kind of place to come for a warm and homely ambiance.
Hosts, Carine and Theo have created the perfect home away from home thanks to the quality furnishings and strong attention to detail. Rooms boast dreamy king-sized beds that are appointed with Flemish linen, while bespoke headboards create a unique touch.
Go for the sunny side up suite and unveil your inner artist thanks to the headboard which comes in the form of a blackboard. Thanks to the B&B’s liquor license, you can sip a Belgian beer, then unwind in the outdoor Jacuzzi for some afternoon relaxation.
For a true regional experience, a stay at McCrae Lodge should be pencilled in your itinerary. Although just a three-minute walk from the white sands of McCrae Beach, the two self-contained apartments are positioned amidst native gums, reminiscent of rural Australia. Despite this, the weatherboard apartments scream inner city vogue thanks to their vaulted ceilings, oak floors, and über-modern bathrooms.
While both apartments are equally beautiful, our pick is the Mariner Suite which is like Wedgwood in a room – we’re talking vivid blue paired with crisp white. Beds are flanked by stunning porcelain lamps, which also carry the blue and white theme through, while glass sliding doors open out to a private patio.
The fully equipped kitchen comes with all the essentials to remedy any bad morning. We’re talking a swish coffee machine to satisfy that caffeine craving as well as a hearty continental breakfast to dig into – perfection!