The NSW Central Coast has long been an old faithful when it comes to budget holidays and family getaways. But forget the daggy old holiday rentals and ageing beachside bungalows — over the past few months it’s become the unexpected new hub for top-tier luxury.
The coastal region, around an hour north of Sydney, has seen one of its busiest holiday seasons ever as a boom in luxury holiday homes draws holiday-makers looking for indulgent domestic escapes.
Belle Escapes Central Coast, which handles holiday rentals in the region, said that was because of a recent trend towards owners flipping properties in waterfront locations into multimillion holiday rentals that could rival five-star hotels in terms of the luxury and VIP perks they offer.
Many of the revamped rentals are in highly desirable locations such as Forresters Beach, Avoca and Killcare.
The agency said its holiday home capacity has tripled in 2020 as a result, despite the wider impact of COVID-19 restrictions on the accommodation and tourism industry.
“A cash splash on the (Central) Coast in recent months has seen an unprecedented number
of prestige properties bought and flipped into holiday homes, releasing a wave of
new and exclusive accommodation,” Central Coast Belle Property principal Cathy
“COVID has created a trend where holiday homes have become the new hotels,
paving the way for a new type of homegrown hospitality.”
Ms Baker said the good old fashioned holiday rental had turned into a luxury experience on the coast, with many of these properties offering five-star perks such as concierge services.
“Our VIP guests who like to have the red carpet rolled out can experience the same bells and whistles they would if staying at the Four Seasons or St Regis such as arriving in style by
seaplane, helicopter or boat, and a concierge service which can secure a table at the hottest restaurant, tee up a private yoga class or in-room massage, and organise a chauffeured ride, private chef or personal trainer,” she said.
Belle Escapes has rounded up some of the most impressive properties available to holiday-makers and per-night cost — however, minimum stays and restrictions apply.
Waters Edge at Forresters Beach, $2000 per night
The very place model Elyse Knowles chose to spend her babymoon with boyfriend Josh Barker, this stunning property takes full advantage of the gorgeous surrounds of Forresters Beach, with floor-to-ceiling windows and sweeping 180-degree views.
Designed by prominent architect Darren Tye, it has four bedrooms (three with ocean views), modern kitchen overlooking a spacious and airy lounge, dining area that opens to a large deck with a barbecue, yard with a private beach access, as well as an outdoor shower and gas fireplace.
Fridays at Wagstaffe, from $550 per night
This airy coastal cottage in peaceful and quiet Wagstaffe offers great Brisbane Water views, and guests can take advantage of the bushwalking tracks in Bouddi National Park, kayaking or fishing in the local waterways, surfing at the beach or great dining options.
Avoca Beach penthouse, from $900 per night
This two-floor luxury penthouse has been styled by Coco Republic and features a massive entertaining terrace, sleek Caesarstone kitchen and bedrooms with Juliet balconies. Best of all, it’s just 100m from the beach.
Blue Water at Forresters Beach, from $2250 per night
Designed and engineered by award-winning architect Matt Thitchener, this property has plenty of floor-to-ceiling windows offering spectacular views that stretch from Forresters Beach all the way to Terrigal.
Extra perks include an integrated sound system, underfloor heating and decks on each level.
Casa Blanca at Forresters Beach, from $1100 per night
Described as a classic Hamptons-style home, this charming property is set in a calm and leafy patch of Forresters Beach. The open-plan kitchen connects with a breezy living and dining space that flows out to a covered deck with a barbecue.
Butlers Beach Escape at Killcare, from $650 per night
This new property at the top of Killcare Heights offers killer views of Palm Beach. It has
four bedrooms, two separate living areas, two bathrooms and a resort-style pool, making it perfect families or large groups. Book now to be one of the first to experience it.
Killcare Beach House at Killcare, from $2000
This beach house comes with no fewer than three separate alfresco entertaining areas and a pool overlooking the sea. With stunning views from virtually every room, including all five bedrooms and the bath, it’s an ideal spot for up to eight guests to stay.
Paradise on Painters at Terrigal, from $525 per night
Set in the heart of Terrigal and walking distance from the beach, Paradise on Painters has three fully self-contained levels and four ensuites. Highlights include open plan living spaces, entertaining decks, stone-top benchtops in the kitchen, and a master suite with a two-way fireplace and soaking tub.
Driftwood at Killcare, from $550 per night
Just 400m from the beach, this three-bedroom home is built around a great entertaining deck with panoramic views of the ocean and features a contemporary kitchen with fresh white plantation shutters and raked ceiling.
Salhia Beachhouse at MacMasters Beach, from $550 per night
With a coastal design and made from natural materials, this beach house boasts huge wraparound decks, al fresco bar, outdoor showers and cabana. There’s plenty of room for eight guests, making it a great option for families and large groups.