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LOCATION
Crete, Greek Islands


KEYWORDS
Couples, Lux, Seaview, Sunsets


THE RESORT
Where do we start with Minos Palace. This was our second stay with the BlueGR Hotel Group and it once again did not disappoint in the least. Minos Place is an exclusive couples-only resort, nestled atop an elevated peninsula just across the bay from Minos Beach in Agios Nikolaos. The sunrise and sunset from this vantage point are nothing short of breathtaking. Our stay could not have been more perfect, everything from the hotel transfer, the warm reception, attentive staff, immaculate grounds, i can go on. I celebrated my birthday during our stay as well and the hotel arranged not one but two birthday cake surprises throughout the day, one with a champagne breakfast in bed. At night we were then brought to Minos Beach for a Lobster dinner…to say we were spoilt is an understatement!


OUR ROOM
A large apartment with 2x couches, bathtub, kingsize bed and wall mounted flatscreen ensured we had everything we needed for a relaxed stay while we were in our room. From the living room we could walk straight out onto the grounds, where we were met by multiple shared swimming pools and an expansive view of the Mediterranean Sea. Waking up at sunrise and looking towards our living room sliding doors made it impossible to stay in bed any longer for us. The colours in the sky, the calmness in the air and the mild temperature even this late in October, who can sleep through this!


FOOD
Minos Palace offers an abundant breakfast buffet each morning, with a new selection of dishes each day. There is also a super talented chef making custom omelettes to your liking and the view from the breakfast area made for the perfect morning. Lunch is then offered from the beach side restaurant with a stellar selection of both traditional and western dishes available. Dinner is served once again in the main dining area with another huge buffet catering to everyone’s tastebuds. On-top of all this there is also an extensive in-room service menu for those looking to kick back and enjoy their meal in privacy.


FACILITIES
The Hotel Grounds are huge and offer many different seating areas including Gazebo’s, sun chairs and tables to consume a chilled afternoon drink. Along the seafront there are many special hidden platforms with 2-4 sun chairs overlooking the ocean. One of the highlights is the private beach among all of this, where one can enjoy the beautifully warm yet refreshing and crystal clear Cretan water. I don’t know what it is about this place, but the water looks literally like liquid sapphire. There is also a cinema, pool table, complimentary bicycles and a selection of water sports available. Minos Beach is the ultimate for a special getaway, to truly relax without ever getting bored.


SERVICE
If it isn’t the sunshine and clear water that keeps us coming back here, then it will be the staff. One after another, just the warmest, funniest and most attentive people. We truly felt at home here which is greatly in part to the hospitality that we’ve now come almost to expect from our hosts here in Crete. Another visit is already planned for next year and we cannot wait to see what BlueGR Hotels & Resorts have in store for us next time.


WIFI
The internet was perfect and works all over the grounds.


BOOK & FIND OUT MORE
https://www.minospalace.com/
https://www.instagram.com/bluegr_hotelsandresorts/
https://www.facebook.com/SensimarMinosPalace/

 


 

LOCATION
Santorini/Greece

KEYWORDS
Lux, Traditional, Incredible Sunset, Jacuzzi


THE RESORT
We loved staying at Oia Sunset Villas. The photos on their website did not do this place justice. It has one of the most amazing sunset vantage points. Situated on the edge of Oia Village, one of the oldest and most famous places in Santorini, this small boutique resort has everything one needs on offer. With two impressive pools, close proximity to the village with ample restaurants and a front on Sunset vantage point, it made for a most relaxing and rejuvenating stay.


OUR ROOM
Oia Sunset Villas is a complex made up of comfortable and classically designed mini villas. Inside the villas are decorated in a traditional Santorini style, with lots of blues and white, and though they look small from the outside, with a mezzanine and a full underground level including bedroom and kitchen, there is plenty of room to accomodate up to 4 people. We had everything we needed, including washing machine, dishwasher and kitchen supplies.


FOOD
We took advantage of the house breakfast, which included cereals, baked goods, tea and coffee every morning. You can tell reception what time you’d like this delivered and so your morning begins with a beautiful spread out on the veranda dining table. Beyond the breakfast, Oia Sunset Villas doesn’t offer too many food options, however there are ample restaurants just a short stroll up the hill.


FACILITIES
The resort grounds offer two beautiful and large swimming pools. The highlight however is the private Jacuzzi that can be found on each villas front veranda. Watching the sunset from this vantage point was nothing short of heaven, highly recommended.


SERVICE
The staff at Oia Sunset Villas were exceptional. We had some issues with parcels being sent to the island and the receptionist took the time to call the Greek postal service for us numerous times to sort everything out on our behalf. Warm, forthcoming and friendly, we felt right at home thanks to the lovely people running the resort.


WIFI
Santorini internet is one of the worst in the world.
However we managed to get a decent connection in our villa, so we lucked out at this resort.


BOOK & FIND OUT MORE
http://www.oiasunsetvillas.com/
https://www.instagram.com/oiasunsetvillas/
https://www.facebook.com/OiaSunsetVillas

LOCATION
Santorini/Greece

KEYWORDS
Homely, Tropical, Traditional

THE RESORT
Our stay at Kalypso houses felt like entering a home away from home. Built and decorated in the traditional greek style, this three bedroom house, which can sleep up to six people comfortably was a relaxing zen den for myself, Chris and my best friend Beth while we explored Santorini. Located near the village of Kamari, the house actually backs onto Santorini airport. However, don’t let it’s close proximity discourage you, as we didn’t notice any planes during our stay and it didn’t bother us at all, perhaps because the planes fly without passing over. The house itself is very homely and is the perfect place for a groups of friends or a family to base themselves while exploring the island. We rented a car whilst there (you will need one) which made exploring Thera and Oia super easy and it was a drive to remember as we viewed the unique landscape and views from one of Greece’s most famous islands. We had a great time staying at Kalypso and the staff were warm and extremely accomodating.

OUR ROOM
We made ourself at home in the master bedroom, which was located at the front of the house and had it’s own ensuite bathroom complete with mini hotel style guest toilettes, which was a pleasant surprise as most homes skip that luxury. The other main room was occupied by our friend Beth, who also had an ensuite bathroom and we had one more room free, which would have usually been the spare room or children’s room as it has two single beds, but being us we made use of the extra space and used it as a luggage room. The rooms are all of generous proportions.

FOOD
Kalypso houses has a fair sized kitchen, complete with a mini dishwasher and when we say mini we mean mini, it was probably the cutest and smallest we had ever seen. There are multiple cooking areas both inside and outside, which makes it great for entertaining friends and those who like to get creative in the kitchen. The house manager kindly drove us up to the local shop which had the essentials for breakfast, lunch and dinner. There are a few local restaurant and taverna’s close by, however it’s probably a little too far to walk to everyday, so we recommend getting a car for sure, usual cost per day is around 30-35euro.


FACILITIES
The house comes with everything you need. The biggest bonus of the property was our own huge swimming pool, complete with multiple sun chairs and chill out areas. It’s not often you get a house and pool that size for just yourself around the world, so we leaped at the opportunity to get some rays and lounge by the pool most days. We also had our own deck out the back over looking the pool with table setting, which made for a great dinner and breakfast spot as the weather was perfect our for the entire stay, even though it was right at the end of the season in October.

SERVICE
Our experience with the owners was really lovely and easy going. The house is part of a collection of properties on the property and there are two family members living in the surrounding houses, which makes it a very family orientated place and really homely.

WIFI
Santorini is rated as one of the slowest net speeds in the world, however you wouldn’t be able to tell here as our connection was really decent during the stay. I’m not sure how it would have performed if we had streamed a movie marathon while staying there, but for the basics of emails and social media we have no issues at all. #winning.

BOOK & FIND OUT MORE
http://www.santorinihouses.gr/en/
https://www.facebook.com/KalypsoHousesSantorini/
https://www.instagram.com/kalypso_houses/

 

LOCATION
Lisbon, Portugal

KEYWORDS
Grand, Luxurious, Top Shelf

THE RESORT
The Four Seasons has a reputation for being one of the world’s most luxurious hotel chains in the world, and the Lisbon FS does not disappoint. From the Service, the View, Pool, incredible Gym, Spa, Food, it was an all round 10/10 experience that will not soon be forgotten. This was our first stay, but we hope to experience many more FS locations, as this really was something special.
This Hotel is certainly the epitome of ‘You get what you pay for’. Check out some of the images below and you’ll see what we mean.

OUR ROOM

The room was spacious, modern and luxurious. Just the right size, with an incredible view of Lisbon from the generously sized Balcony. Upon arrival we were greeted in the room by some fresh Green Detox Juices, fresh fruit and a selection of traditional Custard Tarts (a specialty in Lisbon).
There was a desk to work from throughout the day, as well as a large flatscreen television for some Netflix and Chill to wind down after the days events are completed.
The bedsheets on the King Sized bed were made of a thread-count that was out of this world. Hands down the most comfortable sleep we’ve ever experienced, and that is not an overstatement. This Hotel just cannot go wrong.

FOOD

Where do i begin. The Breakfast buffet was a 11/10 and the lunch buffet was a 12/10.
The selection included Fresh Juices, Sushi, Pancakes, Fresh Fruit, Pastries, Salads, Real Honeycomb, Desserts, the list goes on. Words honestly cannot do the quality and selection of food at the Four Seasons justice, so we’ll let the photos do the talking 🙂
To top it off we were served a Latte Macchiato with breakfast, with a special triple layered effect as you’ll see in one of the last photos below. Masterful presentation meets the highest quality here.

FACILITIES

The Four Seasons Lisbon has both an incredible indoor pool, sauna & spa facilities, as well as a state of the art Gym on the top floor. The outside of the gym is lined with an outdoor running track, that boasts a 360 degree view of the city. It was something else. Besides the view there was also everything one could ask for available, from Kettlebells and heavy weights for strength workouts, to running machines and Pilates Reformer Machines for cardio and stretching. Bravo FS, you’ve really kept your guests active lifestyles in mind here.

SERVICE

We have finally experienced why the Four Seasons has such an impeccable reputation worldwide. The staff were not only incredibly friendly and helpful, we were also impressed with their sociable and caring demeanour. Luis, our server at breakfast looked after our every need, and throughout the entire hotel it was just smiles and open hearted gestures which left us feeling amazing throughout the entire stay.
Whoever is responsible for finding the right people at the Four Seasons has done an incredible job.

WIFI

The internet in the resort was fast, reliable, and accessible throughout the entire grounds, including by the indoor pool, which made for a relaxing little laptop work session. There was also no need to login at any point, as it unlocked at all times. Perfect 🙂

Website – http://www.fourseasons.com/lisbon/
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/fslisbon/

  • July 09, 2017

Who would have thought that we’d find a place on the Australian East Coast, that isn’t Sydney, but feeling just so much like home.
A couple of months ago we settled in a beautiful little coastal town called Tweed Heads. It’s just below Surfers Paradise, and the word Paradise is a great word to describe it.

 

Tweed-heads-Post

The Winter here was extremely mild and it hardly rained at all. Sunrise from our little Headland Apartment is one of the most regularly refreshing experiences of recent memory.
There is something special about waking up before the Sun rises above the Horizon. It’s as though one exclaims to the planet “I am here, and i am ready”. Beyond that it’s also just as beautiful as Sunset…except there is hardly anyone around.

 

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Whenever the view infront of us is too gorgeous to describe, we pull out the camera phone, to try and freeze that moment, and with this blog post we’d like to share some of those moments.

 

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It looks like we may be staying here for a while longer, perhaps even till the end of the year. Its been an actionfilled 1.5 Years since we left regular life in Darling Point, but while we’re both working away on our Online businesses it can also be beneficial at times to slow down, drop the suitcase and smell the flowers. 🙂

 

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Photos: Chris Soll

  • August 16, 2016

Wanderlife Bale (63 of 64)

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LOCATION
Nusa Dua, Bali, Indonesia

KEYWORDS
Grand Design, Close to beautiful white beach, Privacy

THE RESORT
The Balé is the flagship resort by Lifestyle Retreats and for good reason. Located in Nusa Dua, close to one of Bali’s most beautiful beaches, it’s a Resort with huge grounds, expansive private villas, and a resort pool that reminds of ancient roman times. During the day and at night the design of this place is stunning, it’s very symmetrical and one can see a lot of thought went into it’s architecture.

OUR ROOM

The mini villa we occupied was expansive and had everything one could want in a relaxed and reviving holiday experience. There was an awesome daybed in the garden, which was perfect to do some light reading throughout the day. Each villa also comes with it’s own private pool and a massive bathroom with french doors that open up to the pool. During our stay the resort was kind enough to install some mosquito nets over our bed just for us, which showed a level of service that really impressed us.

FOOD

The Balé features a pool side restaurant open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. For breakfast they offer a full a la carte menu, with Balinese as well as international options. For lunch and dinner the restaurant has a selection of fine seafood that won’t disappoint. The in room dining is another great way to enjoy the resorts menu.

SERVICE

We couldn’t fault the resort on anything. The staff were absolutely lovely and very attentive. We had a full time butler that saw to every wish we posed (Mosquito net to Airport transport). I also needed to extend my visa at one stage and a lovely driver took me to the embassy, all the while entertaining me with a very enlightening conversation about his family and the islands history. It was a magical stay at the Bale and we would return in a heartbeat.

WIFI

The internet at the resort sufficed for Email and general Browsing, though if you’re looking to watch youtube etc, it’s recommended to get one of the local data sim packages for your phone, which are fast and very affordable (8GB for AU$10 if i remember correctly)

Website – http://www.thebale.com/
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/lifestyleretreats/

 

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LOCATION
Sanur, Bali, Indonesia

KEYWORDS
Rice paddies, Sophisticated Design, Blues & Whites, Incredible

THE RESORT
The Samata really was something else for us. We’ve stayed in quite a few Resorts and private Villas, but this resort has a special place in our hearts. Where to begin… the incredible architecture, numerous pools, delicious cuisine or the sea breeze keeping the humidity at Bay. The Resort was only recently renovated and taken under Lifestyle Retreats management, so during our stay we were so lucky to actually be the only two guests in the Resort. There is also a gigantic Gym on the grounds, the size of which rivals most members gym’s i’ve seen in Australia, it has everything you need to keep your body fit whilst staying in this idyllic place. I have such great memories thinking back our stay, we really didn’t want to leave in the end 🙂
It’s another gem by Lifestyle Retreats, this company does not disappoint.

OUR ROOM

Our room was amazing. The bed was huge, the bathroom even bigger. There is an outdoor Bathtub, a huge Showerhead simulating the feeling of heavy rain. The interior decorative style reminds one more of Sweden than of Indonesia. There is Aircon and Internet, and walking out to our private pool we overlooked a pristine Rice paddy as far as the eye could see. We also found out that the land on which the rice Paddies stand is now under the Resorts ownership, to ensure that this beautiful sight will remain that way for as long as the Samata exists. There’s also a TV, fridge, outdoor dining area, mini gazebo, bathrobes and everything else you could need to make your stay here a dream.
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Wanderlife Samata (9 of 82)

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FOOD

The cuisine was absolutely delicious. We ordered their Signature Ricepaper rolls at least 10 times during our stay. The food was delivered promptly to our rooms, though we also dined during the day in the Resort Restaurant overlooking the grounds. The pricepoint was very reasonable and so was the portion sizes. Highly recommended

SERVICE

Something Lifestyle Retreats have seriously excelled at, is finding a select group of special individuals who staff their resorts. We’ve experienced this now time and time again. It feels more like a family among the staff than a workplace, though a very well behaved and attentive family 🙂 I had the pleasure of being accompanied to the nearby beach for sunrise by one of the friendly staff, who gave me a history lesson of the surrounding area, and then led the way back to the resort through the rice paddies. There were even members of staff checking in on their days off, so closely knit are this lovely group of people looking after the Samata. We hope to be back one day to once again see their warm & friendly faces.

WIFI

The internet at the resort sufficed for Email and general Browsing, though if you’re looking to watch youtube etc, it’s recommended to get one of the local data sim packages, which are fast and very affordable (8GB for AU$10 if i remember correctly)

Lifestyle Retreats, you’ve done it again, this place is nothing short of a dream.

Website – http://www.thesamata.com/
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/lifestyleretreats/

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JABUNAMI VILLA - FOX (2 of 5)

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JABUNAMI VILLA 4 (4 of 19)

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LOCATION
Canggu, Bali, Indonesia

KEYWORDS
Rice paddies, privacy, nature

THE VILLA
Jabunami Villa is a huge four bedroom Villa situated on the edge of Canggu, which in my opinion is one of the best areas to stay in Bali. It’s got a thriving community vibe, an abundance of rice paddies, easy access to the beach and great food nearby. The Villa itself is huge and perfect for families or groups of friends that are wanting to come to Bali. The living room features large sliding french doors, allowing for really open outdoor/indoor living.

There is a beautiful Pool located in the centre of the Villa, giving the place a nice feng shui flow. Some inflatable Pool toys, including one of those lux swans, made lounging here during the day a relaxing but fun experience.

Next to the pool there’s also a outdoor Gazebo, perfect for a lazy afternoon nap, or a refreshing meditation session.
The pool and outdoor area borders on a traditional Rice Paddy, offering a beautiful backdrop to this already stunning villa.

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OUR ROOM

Naturally with a four bedroom Villa all to ourselves, we chose the Master bedroom, which is situated in a detached building to the second bedroom and living and dining areas. This makes for extra privacy and gives you your own little bedroom oasis with high ceilings, a beautiful white linen master bed complete with large bedframe surrounded by one of the best mosquito nets we’ve ever experienced, when it comes to look and practicality. The bedroom also comes with it’s own huge master bathroom, which won’t disappoint. There are two separate stone sinks on either side, a waterfall head shower and a massive bathtub situated in a rainforest like backdrop with a half open roof.

FOOD

Jabunami Villas provides breakfast every day of your choosing from a range of traditional breakfast dishes, such as Nasi Goreng to western continental style breakfast, fresh fruits, smoothies, baked goods. It’s safe to say we were well feed and looked after our entire stay. The Villa’s staff were also available to to cook other meals if you wish and they have an extensive seafood grill menu, Indonesian menu and BBQ menu available to guests. While we didn’t use this service, we feel safe to say anything the staff prepare would be delicious judging from our breakfast meals ever morning!

SERVICE

Impeccable. If there’s one thing this Villa has that really sets it apart, it’s the staff, they’re attentive, onto it and caring. Jabunami Villa’s manager Made was such a pleasure to meet and made sure our every desire was met, from coconuts to cocktails and even chicken soup when I sadly got Bali Belly from some Mexican food elsewhere!

WIFI

For Bali Wifi (which is never 100% reliable in speed or connectivity) Jabunami Villa’s Wifi was more than okay and made emails, uploads and watching YouTube a breeze!

We highly recommend this accommodation option for your stay in Bali.

Website – www.jabunamivilla.com/
Instagram – www.instagram.com/jabunami/

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 JABUNAMI VILLA - FOX (6 of 10)

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You know when you do something out of the ordinary, and once you completed that thing you say to yourself “I can’t believe i just did that” Well, Circus Arts is all about that exact feeling. On a recent trip up the Australian North Coast the Wanderlife team were invited to come check out a very special place in this most special town, Byron Bay.

CircusArts (7 of 33)CircusArts (1 of 33)CircusArts (3 of 33)Circus Arts is a center for performers & acrobats, which offers classes to teach the art of the flying trapeze. Featuring a 10m high flying trapeze setup, it’s not for the faint hearted. Some of us were more excited than others when we first laid eyes on the installation and saw the first candidates soaring through the sky, performing backflips and hair raising stunts high above the ground. Naturally it’s a safe affair, with safety netting and a friendly instructor holding you up with a safety rope, but tell your brain that.

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We started the afternoon session with a short briefing and overview of what we’d be getting up to today. Hearing that by the end of the session we’d be flying through the air, swinging by our legs from a bar, to then release it and be caught by another person swinging our way was news to us, but an exciting and scary prospect.

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We stretched, then practised our moves on some ground level trapeze bars, trying to make a smooth transition from hanging by our arms, to getting our legs up and over the bar, so we could perform the daring upside down swing.
Then before long it was our turn to begin climbing the ladder to the raised platform. The instructor waiting for us up top had a great sense of humour, making sure all the while that we were enjoying ourselves. “First time for fear, second time for fun.” was the saying he informed us.

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Though we could see the safety net below, it’s definitely a hair raising experience the first time you’re standing on that platform. The instructor holds you by your safety harness, while you grab the bar and are asked to lean forward over the edge.
There is something fantastic, about feeling that fear, and then doing it anyway.
As you jump out and begin flying through that circus tent, 10-15 metres above the ground, swinging big, back and forth whilst executing an acrobatic manoeuvre, has to be one of the most daring stunts any of us can remember participating in. The sensation of pure adrenaline was not unlike a bungee jump or cliff dive, except rather than simply jumping off, there was a skill factor involved, which gave each of us a feeling of achievement beyond just the thrill.

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In all we each got to jump over 5 times, working our way up to the main event, where we’d perform the upside down swing (a little hard to describe with words, but the photos captured it perfectly) and finish off by being caught by one of the other instructors, swinging in time on another bar at the other end of the tent. It was an incredible experience, that we didn’t all pull of perfectly, but were definitely so stoked to have experienced.         CircusArts (16 of 33)

If you’re in Byron Bay, Sydney, Brisbane or the Gold Coast, and feel like pushing your boundaries a little outside your comfort zone, we’d be hard pressed to find a better activity to try out. In our comfortable lives, it’s so easy to become complacent and not learn new things about ourselves, where our boundaries are and what we are capable of in the face of fear. For that, nothing beats direct experience.
It’s a solid tick off our bucket lists, and an experience we’ll remember for a lifetime.
Feel like flying? Check out Circus Arts here
P.S see Wanderlifer Rochelle Fox’s Circus Arts Vlog here

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  • March 31, 2016