Everyone knows the time-honoured axiom: “Happy wife, happy life”.
However, this relationship motto is especially important when your partner is a mother of two young children and needs a well-deserved break.
So I made it my duty to find a relaxing, soul-cleaning retreat that wasn’t too far from Canberra for a much-needed getaway.
We needed somewhere luxurious, quiet and secluded – with a wildlife theme and preferably close to the beach.
Ticking all these boxes were not going to be easy.
But, I discovered a hidden hideaway on the NSW South Coast that was an idyllic escape for a hard-working mum.
Nestled deep in a fern-carpeted forest abundant with wildlife and birds, The Bower at Broulee – about two and a half hours drive from Canberra – offers tranquil temples perfect for pampering, relaxation and more than a few surprises.
Recently renovated with under-floor heating in the bathroom and toilet, the opulent cabins are a romantic retreat with a fully-equipped kitchen, spacious bathroom where you can soak in a tub and a crackling open fire seducing you to sleep under a never-ending blanket of stars.
It’s ever-so-soothing to be surrounded by spotted gums and ironbark trees as well as large Burrawang Palms, which are a prominent feature of the lush environment that hugs the local coastline.
All these natural elements are essential for relaxation – which we enjoyed thanks to the friendly and diligent hospitality of The Bower’s owners and hosts Mark and Sue Berry.
As city dwellers, we struggled slightly on the first night to light the open fire and instead had to snuggle up to stay warm.
However thanks to Sue’s hands-on, fire-lighting course, we soon had a roaring inferno the next morning that was almost too toasty for mum.
Of course, at times we felt a little surprised that we were not alone under the towering canopy of trees.
An abundance of birds of all shapes, sizes and colours regularly visited to share in our serenity.
A cheeky kookaburra cackled while devouring a tasty meal of seeds and corn from a large birdfeeder on the balcony and rainbow lorikeets jostled for position in a well-mannered feeding frenzy.
Our feathered friends became regular visitors to our hamlet – and the pin-drop quiet was only interrupted by the squabbling of these well-nourished birds that had no qualms feeding straight from your hands.
Of course, there is also no need for an alarm clock as the clamouring chorus of birdlife announces each new day – plus the quaint sounds of wandering wallabies foraging for food.
Anyway, who needs to lie around in a cosy king-size bed when there’s a gourmet, locally-sourced cook-it-yourself breakfast hamper ready to enjoy?
Bread, jams, sauces, bacon, eggs, cereals and fresh juices are on the menu along with seasonal fruits, tea and Nespresso-style coffee.
Our self-contained cabins had its own private kitchen with a fridge, oven, microwave and dishwasher plus a gas barbecue on the ample timber deck.
After breakfast, we enjoyed a lazy stroll around the bush tracks to collect more firewood – and to find sticks so we could toast the complementary marshmallows.
While exploring the leaf-littered tracks, which snaked past a Tesla charging station on-site, you can faintly hear the calming surf at North Broulee beach, about one kilometre away.
That was my cue to visit the beach to test the waves, which were impeccable.
After an enjoyable and brisk swim at Broulee, which offers a sheltered beach break for surfing and swimming, we then visited the iconic local hospitality “hot spot” called Mossy Café at Mossy Point.
The renovated café has a delicious menu, great coffee and an indoor-outdoor dining area.
I highly recommend buying a jar or two of the local honey, which is mouth-watering on warm toast or croissants.
As we settled in for our second night, we discovered The Bower also offers tailored packages including a massage by qualified practitioners to soothe away tension while treating your mind, body and soul to essential nourishment.
If you’re more adventurous, you can also enjoy mountain biking and hiking.
Although my wife did not take up these optional extras, she definitely enjoyed getting back to nature, relaxing in the tranquillity and being effortlessly pampered at the blissful and beautiful Bower retreat.
Also being a bird-lover, she was over the moon to share our hideaway with some feathered friends.
I also enjoyed every moment of this sublime sanctuary. Very happy wife, very happy life!
For more information contact (02) 4471 8666 and learn more about overnight accommodation rates.