At iMBARC, we’re passionate about all things travel, nature and culture and it doesn’t get much better than a hotel that combines all three. Masterpieces in themselves, these countryside hotels take the concept of a design hotel to a whole new level with their incredible architecture and creative collaborations with established and up-and-coming artists. Set among the rural wilderness of vineyards or national parks, these are our three favourite countryside hotels for a beautifully surreal escape from everyday life.
Staying in one of the 45 uniquely designed dens that make up the Jackalope’s lodgings is a surreal and dream like experience. Set in the romantically rural wine region of the Mornington Peninsula in Victoria, Jackalope is a hotel that takes art very seriously. Through bold collaborations and partnerships with some of Australia’s most exciting artists and creatives, The Jackalope Hotel redefines what it means to be a design hotel. From the meticulously designed rooms, to the masterfully crafted food and drink at the hotel’s two restaurants and cocktail lounge, at the core of everything they do is a commitment to art, design and detail. For an unforgettable experience of ultimate luxury in the outback, opt for one of the hotel’s ‘lairs’. These signature suites include a daily champagne and caviar service as well as a daily massage treatment per guests. The 30 square meter terrace is invites you to watch the sunrise and sunset as you look onto the endless vineyards stretching out in front of you.
Tasmania may not currently be on your travel radar but a visit to the incredible Freycinet Lodge is reason enough to travel to this isolated island off Australia’s south coast. Situated in the parameters of Freycinet National Park and overlooking the turquoise waters of Coles Bay, Freycinet Lodge is a magnificent hotel from which to explore the unique landscapes of Tasmania. The hotel offers a wide range of accommodation suitable for a range of prices. If you’re travelling on a budget, opt for one of the hotel’s one room or family cabins which offer simple comforts and private balconies to take in the views. If you’re willing to stretch your budget, the Coastal Pavillion room is hard to beat. Perfect for a romantic getaway, this luxury suite boasts stylish wood-panelled walls, a king size bed, floor to ceiling curved windows looking onto the forests around you, and outdoor bathtub for soaking in the surroundings.
A golden-hued titanium wave nestled in the rolling hills of the San Vicente region of Chile, Viña Vik is an extraordinary masterpiece in itself. Located only two hours from Santiago, the spectacular hotel cum art gallery is reminiscent of works of architectural art legends like Zaha Hadid’s Guggenheim in Bilbao and uses hard industrial materials to create a gentle curvy silhouette that reflects sunlight beautifully. As you walk around the hotel and through the open walkways, you feel that it is totally immersed in its stunning countryside surroundings which you can explore further on the back of one of the seven on-site horses waiting to guide you through the landscapes. All of the 22 rooms on the property are designed by local and international artists and boast floor to ceiling windows and artworks, from sophisticated paintings to quirky installations. For the full experience, be sure to indulge in one of the signature treatments at the hotel’s spa which harnesses the anti-aging and nourishing properties of the grape seeds grown on the grounds.