An unforgettable group getaway at the Hamilton Island Yacht Club Villas Posted by Nicole Hayes - 24 February 2016 Leaving the big city lights behind and flying away with a group of friends for a long weekend getaway is my idea of heaven! But planning a trip with a discerning group of friends can be tricky - particularly if you’re the designated organiser. Oh, the pressure! So, when it came to organising our recent tropical getaway, I set my sights firmly on Hamilton Island and their renowned Yacht Club Villas. As we flew into Hamilton Island, I could see countless little sandy islands dotted throughout the turquoise water. I looked over at my friends; we were all glued to the plane windows, our excitement levels peaking. From the moment we arrived, we felt pampered and blissed out, and by the time we left, utterly relaxed and indulged: all trademarks of the perfect holiday. The view from the plane as we approached Hamilton Island: simply incredible. Why we chose the Yacht Club Villas The Yacht Club Villas are promoted as a unique, luxury accommodation option on Hamilton Island, perfect for groups of friends (tick!) or families who are looking for a bit more space and independence. This description couldn’t be more accurate. They were built just a few years ago, and are, quite simply, incredible. Think contemporary lines, timber accents, beautiful textured fabrics, stunning indigenous artwork, and high-end fittings. The style is chic and timeless, and each villa is full of fresh air and light. We were also very pleased to find that our villa was immensely private, and surrounded by lush, tropical gardens. We felt we were staying at our own, private waterfront home. Oh, and the views! The villas are located just behind the Hamilton Island Yacht Club, and have some totally jaw-dropping views over the Whitsunday Islands. A highlight of my long weekend was kicking back on our balcony with a drink in hand, watching the sunset. Amazing landscaping Timeless and chic interiors Unforgettable sunsets As you would expect, the villas are also super comfortable. They’ve been designed to make the best use of space - meaning they were ideal for our small group, but they would also be perfect for a small family. Each villa is spread over three or four levels, and has four bedrooms and four bathrooms, making them a comfortable retreat for a group of up to eight. Everything about the villas feels utterly luxurious - but in a relaxed, understated way. There’s a contemporary kitchen with Miele appliances, a laundry, and ducted air-conditioning. Then there’s the magnificent pool - set in tropical gardens and sprawling lawns - where you’ll seriously lose track of time. Plus, when the cost of the villa was divided amongst our group, it was also surprisingly affordable. The exclusive Yacht Club Villas pool was the perfect place to cool off Our master bedroom terrace (perfect for a spot of sunbaking!) Our regular G&T sundowners – yes please How we spent our time on the island Having organised for a group of friends to visit Hamilton Island on my recommendation, I felt responsible for ensuring they had a good time - though I needn’t have worried! The island is big enough to ensure there is always plenty to do, but small enough to feel relaxed and tranquil. There are so many beautiful ways to spend your time, the only problem you and your guests will have is choosing what to do first! Hamilton Island offers countless activities for a group getaway Aside from lounging around on our sundrenched outdoor terrace or by the private Yacht Club Villas pool, a few things we loved doing included: Cruising in our golf buggy Every Yacht Club Villa comes with a complimentary four-seater golf buggy. Touring around was great fun and the buggy made it very easy to explore the island in comfort. Capturing the sunset at One Tree Hill While the sunset from the Yacht Club Villas is amazing, make sure you don’t miss the unforgettable view from the top of One Tree Hill! There’s a great bar at the top, and you can enjoy some nibbles and cool cocktails as the sky fades into night. Don’t miss the spectacular view from One Tree Hill – especially at sunset Visiting the Great Barrier Reef/Whitehaven Beach If you’re visiting Hamilton Island, you mustn’t miss the chance to take a trip to the Great Barrier Reef and/or the world famous Whitehaven Beach! Even if you’re short on time, you can do a half-day trip, or book a helicopter or scenic plane ride. Speak to the Hamilton Island Tour Desk about which options are best for you and your group. Getting active If your group enjoys staying busy, there are also plenty of great activities that you can organise and pre-book before you arrive - such as a group pampering session at Spa wumurdaylin for the girls, or a fishing trip for the boys, a golf day at the Hamilton Island Golf Club, or a sailing adventure to explore nearby islands. Setting sail on our private charter to explore the surrounding Whitsunday islands, bays and hidden coves. Eating/drinking! As our group is quite partial to a little wining and dining, we couldn’t wait to get out and explore some of Hamilton Island’s cafés, bars and restaurants. We loved Manta Ray, coca chu and Bommie restaurant at the Hamilton Island Yacht Club - where we dined on our last night for a special treat. The well-stocked kitchen at the Yacht Club Villas and amazing outdoor dining area was also a huge draw card for our group, as we all love cooking and entertaining. As there is now an IGA supermarket on the island and a Bottle Shop nearby, it was all very easy. Our sun-drenched outdoor terrace… and that amazing view Getting there and away As it has its own airport, getting to Hamilton Island is a relaxing experience in itself. There are direct flights straight to the island from Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Cairns. We flew in from Sydney, meaning our flight took just over an hour, and the whole trip was effortless. One moment, we were in a busy, overcast city - and the next, we were in tropical paradise, relaxing by the pool! We were met at the airport by a member of the Hamilton Island team, and were transferred directly (along with our luggage) to our villa in a six-seater golf buggy - where we were able to slip straight into holiday mode. Everything that we needed for our holiday was inside the villa when we arrived - including our buggy contract, room and buggy keys, a welcome letter, activity guides, an island map, and even some information on the island’s many walking trails and restaurants. The whole experience was just so easy, smooth and relaxing. I will definitely be visiting again… and soon! About the Author With a busy life juggling motherhood and a career in events management, Nicole is always keen for a luxurious and relaxing getaway. She is a bit of a regular on Hamilton Island, loving the diversity it offers – she’s had some great family-focussed holidays with her little family and fun child-free getaways with friends and thinks Hamilton Island is perfect for both, really. When she’s not working on growing her new boutique events company, Nicole enjoys fitness, spending time with her family and drinking a few too many soy lattes.