Best of est | Australian Rural Retreats

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    We journey to three long weekend destinations inspired by country Australia’s idyllic natural beauty.

    Characterised by dramatic landscapes and a rustic spirit, these retreats emanate down-to-earth simplicity and slower side to life. Defined by a sense of escapism, relaxation and serenity, these unique homes are a destination unto themselves and an oasis that feels like an indulgent home-away-from-home complete with top-tier kitchen appliances and thoughtfully curated furnishings.

    Life in the rolling countryside possesses a charming agricultural appeal where the revered Australian homestead style has been refocussed. These modern homesteads balance natural light, lofty ceilings, exposed timber beams, and landscaped gardens, drawing on a palette of raw materials. As with any authentic farmhouse, these destinations harmonise the connection between external and internal spaces and pay respect to the very heart of the home with a country-style kitchen that’s fit for a round table feast.

    From quaint country Victoria to a historic Tasmanian Inn and a sprawling Byron Bay Finca, we’ve handpicked three undeniably individual locations that will rekindle your wanderlust this winter.

    Produced in partnership with Falcon

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    The Wensley by Byrne Architects and Lisa Buxton Interiors

    The Wensley

    Wensleydale, Victoria

    Setting this newly built home apart is its phenomenal vista out to the coastline. Inspired by the iconic Australian shed, The Wensley is situated on 80 acres of rolling hills at the very top of the Anglesea River in a little Pocket called Wensleydale. Just 30 minutes from Aireys Inlet in the Surf Coast hinterland, The Wensley homestead takes on the best of both worlds from the farm to the beach and was born from the owner’s dream of a country home for their family as well as an escape for others to experience.

    Designed by Byrne Architects director Nick Byrne, The Wensley’s sculptural angles and rustic palette of recycled timbers are the real heroes. In contrast, the interior design by Lisa Buxton Interiors elevates the home through a combination of brass, concrete and leather, which all add a distinctly luxurious tone. Effortlessly balancing classic and contemporary at every turn, the cosy layering and finely tuned attention to detail by interior stylist Tess Newman Morris have ensured The Wensley feels like a one-of-a-kind accommodation.

    Surrounded by epicurean delights in every direction, The Wensley’s kitchen can’t afford to compromise on culinary performance. Inspiring the kitchen design, the Falcon freestanding cooker forms the centrepiece. Bringing a touch of European inspiration into the heart of this communal space, the Falcon cooker is a nod to the traditional cook’s kitchen. Classical in its design yet modern in functionality, the Falcon freestanding cooker provides a seamless fit both in terms of performance and as a symbol of traditional country-style craftsmanship.

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    With its elegance, signature design and excellent cooking performance Falcon’s freestanding cooker became a standout design feature within The Wensley kitchen.

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    The distinctive Falcon freestanding cooker highlights a beautiful marriage between classic and contemporary.

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    The Wensley by Byrne Architects and Lisa Buxton Interiors

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    The Wensley by Byrne Architects and Lisa Buxton Interiors

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    The Wensley by Byrne Architects and Lisa Buxton Interiors

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    The Wensley by Byrne Architects and Lisa Buxton Interiors

    The Range

    Byron Bay, New South Wales

    Nestled into the picturesque Byron Bay hinterland along the NSW coast, The Range, designed by a team of dedicated creatives, immerses itself in the surrounding landscape. Ten years in the making, this sustainable rural retreat finally came to fruition when Tom and Emma Lane of Byron Bay’s ‘The Farm’ fell head over heels for the sprawling 120-acre site. Perched on one of the area’s highest points, The Range features textured, soft internal and external walls inspired by long summers spent living in Spain.

    Wanting to ensure that they honoured the original Australian homestead property while paying homage to Spanish culture, Tom and Emma enlisted the help of friend and architect Dominic Finlay Jones from DFJ Architects. Dominic travelled with Tom and Emma to Spain in 2017, where they extensively looked at Spanish architecture and Finca (Farm style) houses. This visit, combined with their mutual respect for Australian architecture, influenced and inspired the final Finca design. While Emma’s vision and a keen eye for detail allowed her to style the final interiors, Tom enjoyed laying out the spatial flow of the home.

    A natural palette draws on earthy terracotta tones, rust and yellows while reclaimed timbers, locally sourced stone and rendered walls were all incorporated into the design, which applies adaptive reuse principles emphasising natural and recycled materials. Adding to the aesthetic, the ever-present backdrop of nature and the rolling hills changes through every window as the day unfolds. While the property is predominantly used as Tom and Emma’s family home, being avid travellers, The Range is available to rent, in its entirety, during school holidays.

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    The Range by Tom and Emma Lane in collaboration with DFJ Architects

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    The Range by Tom and Emma Lane in collaboration with DFJ Architects

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    The Range by Tom and Emma Lane in collaboration with DFJ Architects

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    The Range by Tom and Emma Lane in collaboration with DFJ Architects

    The Ship Inn

    Stanley, Tasmania

    Nestled at the base of ‘The Nut’ and overlooking the windswept bay beyond, the Ship Inn Stanley in Tasmania has been reinvented as a luxury accommodation destination complete with a storied past. Built in 1849 by Michael Lyons, grandfather of Joseph Lyons (Australia’s only Tasmanian born prime minister), the inn started life as a sailor’s tavern.

    Its current owners had fallen in love with Stanley on the rugged northwest coast and relocated their family from Hobart to undertake the complete transformation of this grand dame. Comprised of nine bespoke suites and apartments, each with their own story of the region, the elegant design and immaculate attention to detail merge effortlessly alongside a collection of vintage art, original timber, luxurious linens and timeless stonemasonry.

    With a boutique yoga studio and gym in the old stables, an old-worldly guest lounge space in the old billiard hall next door and over an acre of landscaped gardens with terraced stonewalls to explore, there’s a multitude of spaces crafted with relaxation in mind. As one would expect, The Shipp Inn’s apartments come fully equipped with kitchens that stay true to the inn’s elegant homestead aesthetic. Providing plenty of culinary inspiration, Falcon’s freestanding cookers align beautifully with the design of this historic space and set the tone for a modern yet distinctly grounded and homely feel.

    Known for its craftsmanship and heritage spanning over 190 years, each Falcon cooker is manufactured in the UK at the original plant in Royal Leamington Spa. This luxurious range of cookers exemplifies the same passion for traditional heritage, culinary excellence and technological innovation.

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    The Ship Inn

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    When building an elegant and provincial feel in the kitchen, Falcon’s collection of freestanding cookers pairs beautifully with a timeless palette of raw timber, brass and leather in the kitchen.

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    The Ship Inn

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