The Deck-house, Wye River review: By the ocean becalmed

Read our writer's views on this property below

Hilda Quiroga discovers blue days and starry nights at a luxury retreat.

I find the deck-house website almost by accident - and what a find. Tucked away from the world above the sea on the Great Ocean Road, this luxurious bed and breakfast is designed to take advantage of the sea and hills.

We arrive in the rain, wet and cold. After quick introductions with hosts Peter and Corinne Mitchell, we are shown around the deck to the entrance. Almost in unison, we drop our bags and sigh; our eyes feasting on the view.

The ocean is draped in a grey mist and the clouds hover just above the hills as the rain continues to fall. Leaning out from the deck, I feel as though I am suspended among the tree tops, dangling above the ocean with the waves crashing at my feet.

You can see, hear and smell the ocean; the perfect companion to quiet reflection or a spot of reading. The bed faces the ocean and the rising sun. The deck-house is awash with light and mornings are welcoming. The only time the ocean isn't in view is when you are in the bathroom, which is functional and spacious. Although there is no bath, the shower's pressure is strong.

On a sunny day, the blue colour scheme of the luxurious furnishings mirrors the blue of the water. The television is mounted on the wall and swivels to face the bed.

The kitchen is fully equipped with a double hotplate and microwave. Nothing has been overlooked, with every possible kitchen implement provided, including candles and sparkling wine glasses. There is an outdoor barbecue and the kitchen table has wheels so it can be moved easily.

The bathrobes are decadent, made from 100 per cent Egyptian cotton. Beach towels and sunscreen are also provided.

The hosts are unobtrusive and when we are out, they visit to freshen the towels, empty the rubbish and take away the evidence of our indulgence: bottles for recycling. They are only next door but the deck-house's angle ensures privacy; we could be the only two people marooned on the clifftop.


It's luxurious accommodation for two and not suitable for pets or children. Hours are spent gazing out to sea; through binoculars, we enjoy watching the fishermen at work below.

There are many ways for guests to pass the time, exploring the Otways or coast. Thoughtfully detailed day-trip itineraries are provided in a display book containing useful information on what to do and where to go.

The website also recommends local masseurs, who will come to the deck-house to indulge your whim. Or there's the offer of canoe adventures at dawn or dusk in search of the elusive platypus. Snorkelling is also a good option. There's a great place just below the deck-house and when the ocean is calm and the weather not too woolly, it offers plenty of sea life to explore.

However good our intentions are to explore the region, the temptation to simply soak up the view and sip bubbles is too great; we are hypnotised by the swaying sea.

Evenings are spent snug by the fire or watching DVDs in bed.

One night, overwhelmed by the starry sky, we take some cushions specifically made for sitting on the deck, arrange them together and, wrapped in our bathrobes, lie down and watch for shooting stars. The show is spectacular and with the ocean as a kind of musical accompaniment, we fall asleep.



Address 5 Sturt Court, Wye River.

Bookings Phone 5289 0222, see

Getting there 174 kilometres from Melbourne the Great Ocean Road.

How much Off peak $285 a night, two-night minimum stay. Peak rate $385 a night, two-night minimum stay. Daily gourmet breakfast hamper available for $20 a day.

Summary An enchanting, romantic, adult seaside escape.

Verdict 17/20

The score: 19-20 excellent; 17-18 great; 15-16 good; 13-14 comfortable.

All weekends away are conducted anonymously and paid for by Traveller.