Worship the sun at the Pullman Port Douglas Sea Temple
High up in far north Queensland there is a town called Port Douglas. It’s small, but popular; quaint, but modern and about as tropical a tourist destination you can get in Australia without jumping over some ocean.
It made for the perfect set-up of the Pullman Hotels’ Queensland resort flagship, the Pullman Port Douglas.
As any good resort should, it relaxes you, making you feel like the rest of the world doesn’t matter and the only thing that counts is you; and spending excessive amounts of time in their pre-Byzantine cistern-like lagoon swimming pool that welcomes you at the front door, of course.
It’s a sight to behold.
On a sunny day, the resort comes to life with its guests gathering around the pool, relaxing on the sun-soaked, tastefully measured patio at the resident Aqua restaurant or taking leisurely strolls along Queensland’s renowned Four Mile Beach, which the Pullman Port Douglas Sea Temple resort has uninhibited access to at all times. It’s the kind of thing dreams of R&R are made of.
As guests wander absent-mindedly along the resort’s walking tracks, through the tropical bushland to the beach or simply around the resort’s foyer, you know you’re not the only one who has mentally unwound.
Coming from the city, too, you realise just how not in Cansas you are. Everyone is friendly, remarkably helpful and friendly and only too happy and willing to go above and beyond. So is the Port Douglas way, it seems, because everyone in town is exactly the same.
The Penthouse apartment
With a layout that is as much centred around the resort’s pool and pool bar as well as focused on privacy and quiet-time, the Pullman Port Douglas has been designed with major guest comfort in mind.
It’s only two levels tall the entire way ’round, but for what it lacks in monstrous urban height, it makes-up for in luxurious living. Whether it’s by the water’s edge or propped-up in a penthouse with sweeping views of the resort and surrounding mountain ranges and an exclusive rooftop patio with bubble bath and entertaining set-up, aside from food, you never need to leave the room.
The resort boasts 194 premium rooms, each with its own benefits and different views and special offerings. The two bedroom Penthouse Apartment is one of the resort’s most lush options. Perfect for friends or an average-sized family, everything from its large, plush bedding to excessively and wonderfully roomy bathrooms, kitchen-living-dining space and gorgeous balcony overlooking the pool is perfect.
Click here to see more room options at the Pullman Hotel Port Douglas.
Dinner at Aqua Restaurant
Tucked tastefully to the side of the guest’s entrance hall and foyer lies Aqua Restaurant. The Pullman Port Douglas’ premium buffet by day and restaurant by night.
The staff there are typically as friendly as you find anywhere, but it’s their impressive knowledge of the Aqua menu and wine list that you don’t expect until you’re ready to tuck right into a bit of everything.
The Aqua menu is quite all-encompassing. It takes inspiration from Asian influence and Australian fare that joins in what for a brilliant and diverse tasting of food.
From beef lasagne to hoisin marinated king prawns pulled right from the ocean next door, the entree menu is a fine smattering of food from the earth and from the sea.
Aqua’s mains of generously spiced green duck curry, or a homely tasting grilled lamb are as exciting as the best of them, which when combined with any one of the essentially countless wines on Aqua’s list, make for a beyond brilliant experience.
Vie Spa day spa
As every good sun-soaked resort should, the Pullman Port Douglas also sports its own in-house spa, Vie Spa.
It’s about holistic healing, relaxation and remedy that when combined means you’re in for a pummelling treat.
Speaking in low-subdued voices, walking delicately and slowly through the halls and lazily glancing at everything from the taupe coloured walls to the darkened, scented massage and treatment rooms, you realise you’re in a place or relaxation. They treat only a few clients at a time to keep it quiet, exclusive and relaxing, propped above the hustle and bustle of guests checking in and out at concierge downstairs.
The day spa’s massage therapists are all trained in not only remedial treatments, but relaxation techniques, using a combination of hands-on tricks and naturally sourced and inspired salts and oils by IKOU that are as brilliant to breathe-in as they are to have rubbed all over your body.
A whole body massage for an hour will set you back a generous $180, but to leave feeling as spaced-out as you do and supple in muscles you didn’t know existed; it’s worth it.
Exploring town and the Great Barrier Reef
The one thing you don’t realise about Port Douglas until you’re there is just how close, cosy and accessible everything is.
The Pullman Port Douglas has connections with every tourism operator in town, so can and does make arrangements at a guest’s request. Hiring a bike is a definite recommendation for a relaxed and leisurely ride either along Four Mile Beach, or fifteen minutes into town along the main strip. With everything from fresh-squeezed sugar cane juice, to the Sunday market to the raw and wild ocean front within walking distance, it’s a definite recommendation.
If a bit more adventure is your thing and you’re willing to take a day to venture out to one of Australia’s many claims to fame, a day trip to the Great Barrier Reef is an absolute must.
You’ve never realised just how much natural beauty, diversity and raw natural existence can be so accessible until you take the plunge – literally.
Port Douglas plays home-base to each of the top day tour operators and depending on how much tie you’ve got or want to spend on the water, they vary in what they offer and what they cost.
Silversonic is one choice operator and if its sea sickness you’re fearful of, don’t worry. Silversonic does it darndest to make sure its guests remain as cool, calm and collected as possible with as many great memories to capture as possible meaning more time in the water and less time worrying about a thing.
Major thanks to the Pullman Sea Temple Resort in Port Douglas for hosting THE F in July 2015.