The Southern Ocean Lodge was kind enough to extend to me a journalist rate for two nights. Thank you to James Baillie and the managers John and Alison for giving me the opportunity to stay at your lodge to experience everything you have to offer.
Southern Ocean Lodge (SOL) on Kangaroo Island is the epitome of luxury. It’s almost a wonder you don’t hear about it more often. However, let’s keep it that way, because it truly is a gem.
When researching our options for Kangaroo Island there were a few bed and breakfasts and a few places where we could stay that were absolutely gorgeous but you needed to cook your own food. (Not necessarily something we wanted to do on our honeymoon.) When it came down to having to pick between Capella Lodge on Lord Howe Island and Southern Ocean Lodge on Kangaroo Island, because we couldn’t afford both, we weighed our options. We finally decided on SOL because the rate included all of our meals, all alcoholic beverages and four tours. We have never looked back.
Upon arriving at the Kingscote Airport on KI after one of the most harrowing and shortest flights I’ve ever been on, I was happy to be on land. Al and Renee picked us up in the SOL van, gave us washcloths and waters and drove us 50 minutes to the lodge. Along the way Al gave us a history of the area. While Blake was still woozy from the plane ride and now a bumpy car ride, I enjoyed the view and looked at the map while Al narrated.
We pulled into a rocky back road for the last little bit to the lodge and pulled up to the gates. The lodge staff buzzed us in and the gates swung open. We drove past huge bushes and trees up a steep road and were greeted by our first sign of wildlife – a goanna! He resembled an iguana.
Once inside the lodge, the expanse of windows that look out over the Southern Ocean are breathtaking. Helen, a staff member, took us down to the comfy chairs by the windows to go over our itinerary for the four nights we would be staying there. We were treated to delicious salmon sandwiches and glasses of champagne.
An itinerary has been set up for each guest before they arrive, but by no means does a guest need to follow it if they don’t want to. Everything that has been offered is only a suggestion. We had set-up spa appointments months in advance and even those had been added to our schedule too.
Helen took us down to our room for the next little tour. The lodge is built into a cliffside that runs on a decline; therefore the rooms run along a steep slope. If you do have mobility issues, I would highly suggest requesting a room closer to the main room. Forgetting a wallet or something in your room when you are near the end of the hallway, like we were, can be a hike.
Our Flinders Suite room was beautiful. Every detail has been thought about and every room has a view of the ocean. Our bed overlooked a sunken lounge area, which the bathroom opened up to. If you needed privacy, you could close a sliding door. The shower had two showerheads and no door and was completely open so you could enjoy the ocean while bathing. The walk-in closet had an in-suite bar, which is stocked daily at no cost, and there was also room for suitcases, and drawers with backpacks you could use during your stay. Outside was a terrace with a daybed. Because the lodge slopes down, you have complete privacy except for maybe a passing wallaby.
A few doors down from our room was a door that led outside to a long, wood plank path down to the beach. In two areas outside of the lodge are tables set out on the edge of the cliff to sit and enjoy the views. Knowing that Antarctica is the next land mass out there in the ocean is a bit mind boggling. Knowing that may be as close as I ever get to it was every bit as exciting too.
Inside the lodge are seating areas around a fireplace that rotates from the ceiling and the dining room with again, more views of the ocean. There isn’t a bad seat in the house. Inside the sunken lounge area is an enormous open bar fit for royalty. Anything you want, you take. If you want staff to mix you a drink, they’ll do that too. They also have an amazing red wine cellar where you can do tastings and again, take a bottle to drink with dinner. I can’t think of another place to stay with that kind of freedom.
Outside on the patio is more seating if the weather is nice and an infinity plunge pool that I made sure to at least put my feet in before we left.
Southern Ocean Lodge
Hanson Bay Road
Kingscote, SA 5223 Australia
Phone: (61) 08 8559 7347