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TRAVEL & LEISURE

Seven Outrageously Luxe Things to Do in Sydney When You're in Need of a Treat

Hop on a seaplane for lunch, soak in a luxury spa tub or sleep in the best bed in the city.
By Marissa Ciampi
March 29, 2021
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By Marissa Ciampi
March 29, 2021
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in partnership with

There are times when we live paycheque to paycheque. Then there are times when it's appropriate to live a little large. Right now we're feeling the need to indulge. Whether that's catching an award-winning opera with epic Sydney Harbour views, spending three hours at a top-end-of-town spa, or dining at one of Sydney's famous restaurants. In partnership with Destination NSW, we've picked out seven outrageously fancy things to do in Sydney, so when you're in need of a treat you know exactly where to start.

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Hamilton Lund

SEE LA TRAVIATA ON SYDNEY HARBOUR

One of our city's most extravagant annual events is back for 2021 with extra gusto. Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour will once again host an award-winning opera on its openair theatre. This time it's Verdi's famous opera La Traviata — a story that inspired Moulin Rouge. You can expect decadence in the form of a nine-metre-high chandelier hanging above the stage (complete with 10,000 crystals) and fireworks at every performance. Not to mention those unbeatable harbour views. To truly experience the luxury event, book a pre-show dinner and interval drinks at the HSBC Platinum Club. Tickets for La Traviata start from $99. The show runs until April 25.

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INDULGE IN A SPA EXPERIENCE AT SHANGRI-LA

Next time you're in need of pampering, don't settle for your high street massage place. Instead, step it up a notch with a spa day at Shangri-La Hotel, Sydney. The luxury hotel's in-house Chi, The Spa has heaps of packages to choose from. The most luxurious is the Journey Down Under ($535–605 per person). This 3.25-hour experience features a 75-minute wattleseed scrub and pink clay wrap combo followed by a 60-minute aroma massage, then a one-hour deep cleansing facial. The spa uses ethically sourced natural ingredients, too. Fully booked? Here are more indulgent spa experiences in Sydney.

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SPEND A NIGHT IN THE BEST HOTEL ROOM IN THE CITY

One of the most expensive suites in the city can be found at five-star hotel The Langham, Sydney. The most expensive and luxurious room in the house is The Observatory Suite (from $2,448 per night). Boasting views over Observatory Hill, the 122-square-metre space features a double drawing room with a fireplace, a grand eight-person dining room and an extra comfy master bedroom. Plus, it has a gorgeous marble bathroom with a separate tub for the most extra soak you'll ever have. After a long bath, throw on that plush bathrobe and slippers and enjoy the 24-hour room service.

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TAKE A SEAPLANE TO A REMOTE WATERSIDE RESTAURANT

Sure, you could easily drive to Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, but where's the fun in that? Instead, live like a celeb and hop on a seaplane to take you there — with food awaiting your arrival. Sydney Seaplanes will fly you to this award-winning waterside cottage, set on Cowan Creek. The decadent three-course lunch ($580 each) is created by head chef Kevin Solomon (formerly at Guillaume). If you can't bear to leave your tranquil surrounds, you can stay overnight at Cottage Point Inn for $775 per person, including your meal and flight. In the morning, you'll be treated to a continental breakfast before flying back to Rose Bay.

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Nikki To

EAT AT ONE OF SYDNEY'S FAMOUS FINE DINERS

Peter Gilmore's Quay is a dining experience worthy of its extravagance. You can choose from a six- or eight-course feast ($240–290) and, no matter your decision, you'll experience the finest ingredients presented beautifully. Raw scallops are paired with liquorice kombu and oyster cream; smoked eel with caviar and sea cucumber crackling; bone marrow noodles with mud crab and miso butter; and Maremma duck with black garlic and preserved blueberries. Complete your evening with the sommelier wine pairing for $190–230.

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CHARTER A PRIVATE YACHT FOR 20 OF YOUR NEAREST AND DEAREST

Want to feel like a billionaire? If the answer is 'so freakin' bad', pretend you're Bruno Mars right here in Sydney. Plenty of local companies hire out yachts by the hour. Sydney Harbour Escapes, which operates the popular party boat Starship Sydney, has four-person boats all the way up to mega yachts for 950 guests. If you're going all out, treat 20 of your nearest and dearest to a yacht day, from $325 per hour. Living large? Opt for a skippered overnight stay with Taylor Made Escapes in Palm Beach from $499.

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Balloon Aloft, Destination NSW

WATCH THE SUNRISE FROM A HOT AIR BALLOON

There's more than one way to take to the skies. For the most leisurely flight option, hop aboard a hot air balloon. There are heaps of these nostalgic experiences out there, but we rate Balloon Aloft's flights in Camden and Hunter Valley. Each one-hour flight will cost you $279 per person. Whichever location you choose, you'll set out at sunrise and pass over rolling countryside and lush valleys. After your flight, you'll enjoy a gourmet brekkie complete with sparkling wine, either at Peterson House Winery in the Hunter or Camden Valley Inn in the Macarthur region. Going on a luxe getaway? Balloon Aloft also runs experiences in Mudgee and Byron Bay.

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'La Traviata' runs until April 25, 2021. Tickets start from $99

Top image: Sydney Seaplanes

Published on March 29, 2021 by Marissa Ciampi

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