As a travel writer I get to stay in some pretty cool places for work, Helia House isn’t one of them.
Don’t get me wrong… it is utterly FABULOUS! It’s just that I save this particular luxe escape for pure, unadulterated relaxation. No meetings, no zooms, no work talk, no itinerary, no agenda.
In fact Helia House is owned by very generous friends who allow me to cocoon in its beauty when available – which is not so often these days as this property is so damn special it’s attracted a lot of media attention (tres instagrammable of course..). Nevertheless I want to introduce it to you because if you do manage to find some open dates on their booking site, any season at all, lock it down!
The entire property is completely geared for true holiday and is super comfy in every aspect. The house sleeps upto 6 adults … (plus a couple of little ones should you be inclined to ruin the peace…) The owners have a background in hospitality which probably explains why the kitchen is better equipped than most homes – and the decor is simply divine as you can see. Beach-chic at its most sumptuous. My friend also happens to be one of the most naturally stylish chicks I know.. so there’s that.
As a former chef and cookbook author, having a fully equipped and working kitchen in a holiday rental is crucial because, while I Iove to check out local restaurants and cafes, I also really enjoy cooking using local produce if at all possible. Helia House not only sports the best holiday house kitchen ever, but a gorgeous dining table for upto 8 AND a covered outdoor dining area that seats the same number. It’s an entertainer’s dream – whether travelling with family or a couple of good friends. The consideration applied to this set up is just one example of the attention to detail throughout. Every corner of this house has been curated, but not overly worked. It’s simply blissful, and very well maintained.
There’s a neat office space if you need it, mood lighting throughout the entire space, cool interior accents via photography and artwork including a custom coloured surfboard hung on a high wall, on-trend dried flower arrangements in equally stunning ceramic vases, stylish eco bags for beach or shopping, a bloody fabulous drinks cart for a gin cocktail on arrival, design books and mags in the lounge area as well as vinyl for the record player, movies etc. There’s a well equipped laundry, bicycles and a huge lock up garage. Situated at the top of a stee[ hill with sweeping views it’s an 800 m walk to the beach through a shortcut in the bush and 5 minutes’ drive to the shops.
This time last year, yes, at the beginning of winter (um, that’s winter for those of us south of the border… I don’t think it exists on the Sunshine Coast), in a small gap in covid lockdown proceedings, the husband and I spent a glorious week in Helia House, mainly sleeping if I’m honest. I have no idea if our lethargy was due to covid blur /brain fog or because this place is so damn dreamy but it was as though we were drugged. That bed is so fricken comfortable.. it kept calling me whenever I was about to ..well do anything really… it was incredibly indulgent and we probably didn’t make the most of the beautiful Sunshine Coast but boy did we feel rejuvenated when we arrived home. And no regrets – we clearly needed that deliciously restful break. I suspect Helia House is exactly what it needs to be for whomever is fortunate enough to stay with her.
OK, so we didn’t spend the entire time sleeping….. there was certainly some eating involved, lazy strolls around Peregian Beach village shops ( mainly for coffee and ice cream) a couple of stunning drives into the hinterland and catching up with friends who live locally. Recently we’ve had more good mates move to the area which means we’ll inevitably be spending more time in the region and hey, I’m not complaining.
The local shopping village has pretty much everything you might need for your stay. Right by the beach there are great spots for coffee, breakfast or casual lunch, cool homewares stores and boutiques ( all appropriate for the region – but more laid back than nearby Noosa), a cool deli, booze store etc but of course there’s some great gear a little further afield.
Here are my top tips (most of them kindly introduced to me by Helia House and local friends- thanks guys!) :
In the Village:
Skal Coffee – on the beachfront, great breakfast, coffee, juices plus take away pies/treats
Peregian Pantry – great take away gear for grazing platters, delicious ice cream and coffee
Sushi Wave – cheap n cheerful, casual Japanese – good for lunch
Peregian Beach Bakery – a great range of breads/ pies/ sandwiches and sweet morsels
IGA Peregian Beach – what you’d expect from a well stocked, local IGA
A little bit further :
Goldie and the Greengrocer a good little cafe/deli in Peregian Breeze with neato staples for stocking holiday homes including goods by local producers and a handful of top notch wines. Tasty burgers, toasties, nachos and tacos.
Ricks artisan pies and sourdough – savoury and sweet pastries beside a servo, don’t let that fool you…. oh my
Belmondo’s organic market – this place is GOLD for excellent ingredients – fresh produce, a wide range of high quality pantry items including chocolate, tea, coffee plus there’s a great cafe, Vanilla Food , Tanglewood bakery and superb butchery , Eumundi Meats attached . ** NOTE: the Belmondo’s link was broken at time of publishing however I can’t find evidence of this shutting down. Will amend shortly if necessary.
Zumbo Test – Sydney’s loss is Sunshine Coast’s recent gain… Go Adriano!
Guru Life– great coffee, excellent, wholesome, feel good cafe fare in a unique environment with backlawn vibes and local ducks wandering to and fro from the adjacent pond . Live music and Friday night curries!
HELIA HOUSE is located about 20 minutes’ drive north of Sunshine Coast Airport and 1.5 hours from Brisbane. Be prepared to fall in love.0