The seaside hamlet of Corlette, which is near Port Stephens and around three hours' drive north of Sydney.
Formerly Peppers Anchorage, this rejuvenated Port Stephens icon comprises eight low-rise accommodation structures that sit between the cliff side and the sea. The multi-million-dollar refurbishment by Andrew O'Connell of Altis Architecture embraces a Hamptons aesthetic with a neutral palette complemented by blues, teals and hints of timber and stone. There are two restaurants, the new Spa Lucca, a fitness centre, the swish Hemingway's Bar (which serves rare whiskies) and a dedicated Veuve Clicquot bar, which operates from the main pool which is lined by smart blue-and-white umbrellas. There is also an adults-only infinity pool.
The Anchorage's 80 spacious guestrooms boast crisp blue and white interiors framing dreamy sea vistas. Rooms range from studios to one- and two-bedroom spaces. Each room has its own balcony or terrace, king-size beds with chunky knit throws, upscale French bathroom products and mini bar. Our Captain suite features a living room with powder room and sofa bed (for extra guests), separate bedroom with bathroom and freestanding bath. Located on the ground floor, the room spills out to a terrace and grass (ideal for those travelling with children).
The resort offers two dining options: the Wild Herring and the Galley Kitchen, where breakfast, lunch, high tea and dinner is served in a large light filled space with a wraparound terrace, perfect for soaking up the gorgeous views. There is also a casual poolside menu. The buffet breakfast offers fresh juice, eggs to order, and a selection of hot and cold dishes. The coffee could be better.
Walk along the marina spotting dolphins and sea birds, take a dip in the calm waters of Corlette Beach and be sure to have a sunset drink at Hemingway's. Spa Lucca is a must: arrive early, don an Italian linen robe and take advantage of the hydro suite, which includes a jacuzzi and steam room. Signature facials use Sodashi products. . Afterwards kick back on the deck with a herbal tea before floating back to reality.
For a luxurious Hamptons-inspired sojourn with gorgeous beaches and luxe spa, the Anchorage can't be beaten. Best of all, you don't need to leave the country.
26 Corlette Point Road, Corlette, NSW. From $299 a night for an Anchorage room including breakfast. See anchorageportstephens.com.au
Chocolate dipped strawberries and wine while watching the sun set over the yacht-dotted bay.
While staff were friendly, an offer of assistance with our bags on check-in would have been appreciated. Dining here is expensive: the food is perfectly acceptable but at high-end dining prices, you'd expect more. Kids' meals err on the pricey side at $20.
Sheriden Rhodes travelled at her own expense.