Plenty of hotels, motels, B&Bs, cottages and caravan parks are available across the Kiama region, depending on budget. But if you want to sleep somewhere truly special – accommodation with a distinct sense of place, perhaps, or with a view you won’t find anywhere else in the world – a few one-of-a-kind stays deliver history, dramatic architecture and nature in spades. From farmstays to grand heritage homes to design-driven aeries, here are some of the area’s unique accommodation offerings.
Checking in to Driftwood Beach House, in the heart of Kiama, is like being handed a slice of history. This 170-year-old Cape Cod-style house has been transformed into a boutique cottage, striking the perfect balance between comfort and convenience – you’re minutes walk from the Kiama Blowhole, Kiama Lighthouse and Surf Beach. The décor is barefoot luxe, right down to the courtyard with oversized sofas and barbeque facilities.
Saltwater pool – tick. River frontage – tick. Spa overlooking the water – tick. Media room – tick. Living, lounging and sleeping spaces spread over a two-storey, architect-designed abode – tick. Reflections at Minnamurra will give you serious house envy. Tastefully decorated – with wooden floors, high-threadcount linens, luxury appliances and freestanding tubs – the property also features watertoys like paddleboards and canoes, which you need drag only metres to the river. You’re also close to rainforest in Budderoo National Park.
A grand country estate set on five hectares of manicured gardens, heritage-listed Terragong 1858 feels more akin to the Downton Abbey set than to its rainforest-laced setting in the Jamberoo Valley. In true manor-house style, the B&B offers three beautifully appointed guest rooms, individually designed, with original features throughout. Explore the region’s national parks and vineyards, then retire to the pool for a cocktail.
Nearby is Jamberoo Valley Farm, a working permaculture farm with luxe cottages sporting views from valley to ocean – particularly breathtaking when enjoyed from the alfresco Swedish-style hot tub. Meet friendly cows, sheep and pigs; collect eggs; stroll to the dam to spot kangaroos and wombats; then learn about life on the land in its fruit and vegetable gardens.
Set on a 60-hectare farm, Dovecote’s two high-drama, architect-designed lodges (The Headland and The Range) offer fireplaces and outdoor cinemas, with multi-course meals and spa treatments available on site. Floor-to-ceiling windows reveal rolling fields dotted with cows, descending to the water.
Nearby and also set on a working farm, Ocean Farm adds the unique design drama of notable Sydney architect Espie Dodds. From guest rooms to the infinity pool, sea views abound, and a grassy path leads from your door down to Werri Beach, if you want to feel the sand between your toes.
In town you’ll find Soul of Gerringong, a Hamptons-inspired cottage with three separate residences, oak floors, cathedral ceilings and bespoke décor. Its original 1800s-era whitewashed cottages are only a brisk stroll to beaches, restaurants and cafes.
With expansive views over Gerringong Golf Club and Seven Mile Beach, The Shed is the kind of place you’ll check in to and never want to leave. The architecturally stunning property comes with style to spare, from its industrial-chic aesthetic to its outdoor firepit, plunge pool and freestanding tubs.