Is this the coolest hotel in Australia?

Kristina Harrison
·1-min read
Photo credit: Courtesy of Raes
Photo credit: Courtesy of Raes

From Town & Country

I had long wished to visit the legendary Byron Bay from my home in Sydney, Australia, and, after the confinement and frustrations of lockdown, my partner and I decided it was the perfect time to embark on the epic nine-hour drive from the city.

Photo credit: Kristina Harrison
Photo credit: Kristina Harrison

As we came over the final hill of the journey, we were met with the most incredible view towards Wategos Beach, and there, nestled quietly near the sand, was our destination: the Raes on Wategos hotel. Built in the 1950s, this now-beloved sanctuary underwent a full refurbishment in 2018 and is a lesson in chic, pared-back furnishings and understated style. Walking inside is like stepping into the pages of a luxury interiors magazine, with cool furniture at every turn and soothing natural materials used throughout. And with only five suites and two penthouse rooms, it can feel at times like you have the place all to yourself.

Photo credit: Courtesy of Raes
Photo credit: Courtesy of Raes

The food at Raes on Wategos is exquisite, thanks to a brilliant menu from the celebrated chef Jason Saxby (formerly of the iconic Ledbury restaurant in London). Since taking the reins in the kitchen at Raes Dining Room earlier this year, he has impressed diners with his exceptional plates that cleverly and deliciously blend Italian flavours with fresh coastal ingredients. It’s also worth booking a table for cocktails in the cosy cellar bar during your stay.

Photo credit: Courtesy of Raes
Photo credit: Courtesy of Raes

Finally, don’t miss the wonderful treatments in the spa, which is modelled on a tiled Moroccan bath house, and uses sumptuous products from Santa Maria Novella, the world’s oldest apothecary.

Photo credit: Kristina Harrison
Photo credit: Kristina Harrison

For more information and to book, visit www.raes.com.au.