// THE BASICS
Beautiful Arinya Retreat takes it name from the Aboriginal language of ‘Arinya’ meaning Kangaroo. Nestled on secluded open bush land, it’s easy to spot the accommodation’s namesake at any time of day. Roos of all sizes and courage graze on the surrounding lawns.
This eco-friendly establishment comfortably sleeps up to 10 guests and provides tailored on-site treatments and dining focused on wellbeing near Daylesford.The Retreat is just 10km drive from this popular town in Victoria. The environmentally friendly property – which relies on off-the-grid solar power, rainwater and an open fire for colder days – is built from rammed earth.
As a party of two, we had access to the master bedroom as well as the rest of the living space. For a couple the property represents generously proportioned luxury and excellent value; for a larger group it would be extremely fun and sociable.
Largely open plan, guests enter directly in to the lofty living and dining area with floor to ceiling windows. A roaring fire was already ablaze – very welcome on a rainy winter’s day. This is connected to a high-spec kitchen brimming with utensils, crockery, recipe books, gadgets and goodies. We felt spoilt by the hamper of local produce (chocolate, coffee, wine etc.) that was generously provided.
The master bedroom looks out over an expansive lawn and the friendly bouncing neighbours. It’s light and modern with a heavy duvet, extra plump pillows and blackout blinds to guarantee a brilliant night’s sleep.
Still can’t nod off? Fill up the bathroom spa tub and pop on some relaxing music. With no TV and Internet access only on request, Arinya Retreat is the ultimate place to switch off and unwind.
// WHAT I LOVED
The Manager Damien is an absolute legend and perfect host. He truly went out of his way to make our 1 night stay special and memorable. He’s full of knowledge about the area and clearly very passionate about Arinya, its surroundings and promoting wellbeing near Daylesford.
Damien recognised that people do not want to travel in to Daylesford for every meal. In response, the Arinya Retreat chef supplies pre-prepared recipes full of flavour to enjoy at your convenience.
Rest assured that produce is freshly harvested from the garden or sourced from open farms in the area. The food was exquisite. As a pescatarian I had delicious Thai green salmon with coconut rice; Jack had chicken Parmigiana (this is Victoria after all) baked in the oven.
The in-house massage given by Loretta was honestly the best I think I have ever had. Loretta is fabulous and holds 15 years’ massage experience for the AFL. Already feeling beyond Zen, we then enjoyed an hour of yoga with Chitra – an international teacher with 25 years’ experience. Both ladies were incredibly professional, consultative and thorough.
Mediation, health assessments and acupuncture sessions are all available. The Retreat can accommodate any wellbeing near Daylesford requests during a guest’s stay. Sadly we had less than 24 hours to enjoy this gorgeous property. I wish we could have stayed for at least another night.
// GET TO KNOW
Damien Harris is the long-time Accommodation and Events Manager at Arinya Retreat. He grew up on a farm harvesting sustainable native herbs and bush food. As a family they were self-sufficient and this inspired Damien to pursue a similar dream. He says his eco philosophy has always been to stay true to nature.
Alongside the property’s eco credentials, the Manager is associated with Lit’ya Spa and he supplies many of their native bush ingredients. Steeped in Aboriginal knowledge and tradition, Lit’ya translates as ‘Of the Earth’. It is a unique range of skin, hair and body products based on Indigenous Australian plants and the principles of modern and Indigenous herbalism, aromatherapy and touch therapy.
Damien also facilitates weddings and corporate events, offering unique actives such as wildflower identification bush walks and personal development in nature. Other options might include a Mineral Spring Tasting and Picnic walk to Tipperary Springs and Hepburn Springs, or additional solutions focused on wellbeing near Daylesford.
// ADDRESS BOOK
Phone Number: 0435 715 535
Address: 65 Scheggias Track, Daylesford, Victoria, Australia