Cities: Blue Mountains, New South Wales
I was fortunate to visit Wolgan (located west of Sydney, Australia about 3 hour’s drive) the day before it opened in 2009, and spent a couple of hours with Joost Heymeijer (the General Manager) who showed me around, beaming with delight as he had been since ground breaking so everything that was there, Joost organized!
Now heading back there with David Thomas (our Australian Manager) I was eager to see how everything was. We had several clients stay there and come back raving about the entire experience; I couldn’t wait as we drove up the mountains. On my first visit I took the 1 hour heli flight from Sydney Airport. It is good to do the trip both ways to really enjoy the experience.
We arrive and are met by Joost and welcoming team and shown to our 2 bedroom residence, above the main resort area. All the rooms and residences are so spacious, each with their own pool (indoor or out), large living area and huge bathroom, and dressing area and their specially made beads, which are so comfortable. A decanter of fine Aussie Port awaited our arrival which we chose to tackle after dinner.
We chose to hop in the bikes at the residence and take a circuit of the property on the pathways that links everything together.
I then had been booked in for a spa treatment at their world class spa, named The Timeless Spa, which was wonderfully relaxing prior to dinner.
Meeting up with Joost and his management team we had cocktails on the terrace as the sun set over Wolgan Valley and then enjoyed dinner in the main dining room. The food as prepared by the Executive Chef, Dwayne Goodman and his team was excellent, fresh and tasteful. I had met Dwayne on my first visit as he had prepared a great picnic for us out in the valley. Almost 90% of Joost’s opening team are still there, which is a testament not only to Joost’s ability, but to the quality of the resort.
David and I and a few others did enjoy the port before retiring to a most peaceful sleep.
After Eggs Benedict (don’t tell Linda) we mounted the horses and rode out with our guide to extended parts of the property, in search of the elusive Albino Wallabies. Wolgan has 4 on the property which is very unusual to have so many in one area, but obviously this valley is heaven not only for us, but for the animals. We were lucky we found one high in the hills, they stand out so much as they are so white!
The flora and fauna there is vast and we also stopped to see the Wollemi Pine plantation that was planted a few years ago. These pines are the oldest known plant species in the world and flourish down here.
Back for lunch at the Country Kitchen, which is located below the main dining area close to the main pool area and an ideal space to enjoy a light lunch before heading on to the next adventure.
We hopped in the 4 wheel drives and headed to 1832 Heritage Homestead to see what it was like 200 years ago when the original farmers were here. This continued around the property until dusk where we were spotting the nocturnal animals.
We freshened up and then headed to the dining room for cocktails and then followed a degustation dinner in the private dining room. With matching fine Aussie wines, this dinner seemed to never end, but I wasn’t in any hurry!
I was only here this time for 2 nights, not enough as there are still so many activities to take in, but next time. Wolgan is perfect for couples looking to escape for a few day, and for families as they have such a great kids program; from archery, bush painting, bush bingo, kite flying and pony rides to name a few.
The tariff at Wolgan includes all meals, selected wines and beverages and 2 nature based activities each day, so the value is there – the experience is great!
I like to include Wolgan in my client’s itineraries either when they first land from the states and this allows for a relaxing way to acclimatize and then continue on, or at the end prior to leaving for home.
Within 12 months, Wolgan has become one of Australia’s Super Luxury Lodge experiences and one that you should all experience at some time….
I can’t wait to go back and bring my family with me for us too experience.