LIFESTYLE NATION: IN GUIDE TO THE MARGARET RIVER REGION
It is a nice day in Perth and we so often focus on the vibrant cultural fabric of 6000. However, sometimes we forget how brilliant our surrounds are. Slow down and smell the posies boys and girls, we're taking you on a trip down to yuppie county.
Ready. Set. Go.
Arriving at Settler's Tavern on Friday, I didn't know what to expect from my host Carl. Our interactions had been via email, and fleeting at best. When I walked into the bustling metropolis of Settler's, I initially didn’t recognise him because they were plenty of grey and long-haired men in the room, and of course, his blue tie-dye shirt was surprisingly subtle. Carl greeted me with a warm hug and we ate nachos and talked about his life. This was the beginning of a weekend of many incredible stories of Carl's life.
After dinner, we made our way to the Princess House. Carl's life is embodied and very much personified in the home. The property is so serene, making it the perfect place to get away down south. The Feng Shui designed entrance leads through to a Balinese inspired courtyard and home, with a flowing floor plan, American oak floors and distinctive fossilised slate from the Tiananmen region of China. The upper level of the home has three bedrooms, all with en-suites. The master bedroom boasts ocean views, while the ensuite features a sunken spa bath, Italian marble floors, walls and bench tops. Outdoors, the living revolves around the lap pool, overlooking the glorious gardens where we passed time taking in the tranquility and views of the mouth of Margaret River.
After we set down our things, we drank wine and looked out onto the infinity pool and vast gardens. Carl shared stories about the famous musicians, actors and models who he had opened the Princess House to. It is unsurprising, as the house is a place where people congregate for tranquillity, rest and inspiration. Carl also told us about his life in the United States and Bali where he also entertained many over the years. While Carl and I bonded over common musical interests, others bonded with Carl on a spiritual level. There is no doubt that Carl was a host with warm energy; he made it feel as if it were entirely natural for us to be spending time there. He encouraged us to explore the South West on our own terms - and here I am, providing the IN bucket list!
We started our Saturday by grabbing a quick bite to eat and purchasing an expensive piece of neoprene due to poor planning. We spent the best part of the morning walking and driving between some of the beaches with the best catering to both hiking and surfing — Gas Bay, Grunters and River Mouth. Following a quick coffee at White Elephant, we walked back to the car and drove a short distance home to the Princess House.
After some hours relaxing and reading by the pool, we ventured into town for a late lunch at Brew House. The food was served quickly by a friendly Italian waitress. My friend thankfully ordered olives on the side so that I could indulge. (I also ran into my worst enemy ‘S4R4H95’ on our way to the car. I got a few looks.)
We hoped to be back at our lodging for sunset, so we picked up some provisions at our favourite Wesfarmers institution, Coles. Upon our arrival at the PH, Carl had some delicious reggae music already cranking. We did yoga by the pool, and then had Carl take us for a walk down some luscious green grass to watch the sunset. Upon our return, it was time for cheese and the Royal Wedding — the end-of-the-day perfect pairing.
In the morning, we went to White Elephant again where I was conned into buying a full meal. At this point, Conrad has to ask for his muffin to be heated up twice. The coffee was apparently 'alright', but I thought it to be good.
Once again it was time to cruise along the monolithic coastline, where I returned to my preferred surf lookout. I looked up the swell forecast and concluded it was a 'perfect day for the groms'. I decided it was an alright place to surf, with my shark shield and all. Cue an opportune time to show you some pictures of the ocean I took.
After my close brush with death, we went home and said goodbye to our new best friend, Carl. The incredible host was preparing for his next guests who were infinitely cooler than I, as they were preparing to record an album in his guest house.
During lunch at Aravina, I connected with the waitress who showed off some boots she had recently purchased online. She told me her husband would be angry that she bought them and in classic banter form, I advised her to divorce him. (She responded by saying he had too much money, and so I thought perhaps that I too could be a waitress at Aravina. Maybe I could get married at the gazebo? I too like Italian leather boots... Did I just meet my spirit animal?)
As the hard and soft cheeses marinated in my mouth, the weekend was surely coming to an end —but in this gorgeous region, I knew it was just the beginning.
Disclaimer: I did not surf at all on this trip.
This south west haven is an experience, only matched by some of the world's finest resorts. The property is perfect for weddings, birthdays, and larger celebrations. The home is available for rent on Airbnb. If you would like to save on costs, you can rent the property from Carl direct. You may email him at [email protected]