Emirates Hotels & Resorts has opened the 4,000-acre Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa, Australia’s first luxury conservation-based property and Emirates’ first project outside of Dubai.
The Wolgan Valley has 200 million years of natural and cultural heritage and more than 1,500 unique flora and fauna species, which Emirates says are largely untouched.
Emirates Hotels & Resorts has built the US$94 million project same principles as the company’s Al Maha Desert Resort & Spa in Dubai, and Emirates says the Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa combines the expectations of the high-end traveler with a commitment to broader social, ecological and environmental sustainability.
A scenic three-hour drive from Sydney and occupying only 2 per cent of the conservation area’s total expanse, Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa features 40 individual secluded suites. Emirates says the resort is fully integrated into its environment, supporting wide-ranging conservation practices.
Through a broad range of activities that includes wildlife, horseback, mountain bike and bushwalking tours as well as Aboriginal culture explorations, colonial heritage tours, painting and photography excursions and much more, Wolgan Valley guests can explore a natural environment found nowhere else in the world.
Emirates has created a “feral free” zone bordered by the valley’s natural escarpments and the Donkey and Wolgan mountains that is designed to protect Australia’s rarest indigenous species.
The resort also has planted a grove of one of the oldest and rarest trees on earth, the recently discovered Wollemi Pine whose history dates back to the time of dinosaurs. Ultimately, says the company, all 4,000 acres of the resort’s conservation area will strictly protect and nurture the region’s flora and fauna and ancient Aboriginal and colonial cultures.
“Since the opening of Al Maha a decade ago, we have built our businesses on the basis of being sustainable and environmentally aware; and leading in wildlife conservation, in particular the protection of endangered and threatened species,” says His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al-Maktoum, chairman and chief executive, Emirates Airline and Group. “With the opening of Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa in Australia, we are expanding our unique luxury conservation based resort philosophy into a different country, a different continent and a different ecological environment.”
Wolgan Valley was selected by Emirates after extensive research for a location that lent itself to world-class conservation-based practices. Rich in historical significance, Wolgan Valley has welcomed such historical greats as Charles Darwin in 1836, with the original homestead dating back to 1832. Today, Wolgan Valley has been fully restored to provide a glimpse of the region’s heritage for guests.
Emirates has had the resort’s architecture designed to be progressive in its sustainable philosophy but classic in its aesthetic approach. Its design, inspired by original Federation style, aims to be reminiscent of traditional rural Australian homesteads.
Each suite in the resort has its own indoor/outdoor swimming pool, private verandah, separate living and sleeping areas, luxurious en suite bathroom and double-sided fireplace.
A major focus of the guest experience at Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa is sustainable cuisine, served within the resort and surrounding reserve. Executive Chef Dwane Goodman has created sophisticated dishes enhanced by the resort’s regional, seasonal and organic food philosophy.
Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa also incorporates the Emirates-branded Timeless Spa. Originally created at Al Maha, Emirates’ luxury spa brand is an integral part of the guest experience. The Timeless Spa concepts focus on natural products, and the provision of holistic treatments which revitalize the body and enhance relaxation.
For more information about Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa or to make reservations, visit www.wolganvalley.com. Rates include overnight accommodations, breakfast, lunch and dinner ― including a selection of regional wines and beers ― and two nature-based activities per person, per day.