How flash is Hamilton Island now?

For those of us who remember Hamilton Island from at least 5 years ago (and much further back than that!) SHE is seriously impressed with the recent developments on this beautiful Whitsundays island. SHE was fortunate to be included on a recent industry familiarisation program that saw us on a grand tour of the island and it’s many new additions and upgrades. Our group flew on Virgin Blue and arrived in time for lunch at Qualia – sigh…that’s a pretty tough view to take in over a glass of Jansz and a light lunch!

View from Qualia

View from the deck at Qualia

After a wander around the stunning property and a peek at the pavilions it was time to head to the Reef View Hotel for a refresh before boarding the ferry for a 1o minute journey to Dent Island.  Hamilton Island Golf Course is Australia’s only championship golf course on it’s own island – and what a stunner it is. There are the  most amazing views from every possible angle – it’s jaw-droppingly beautiful.  We jumped in our buggies and headed for the 14th tee for a glass of champagne as the sun set – and the moon rose!

Drinks on the golf course

Sunset drinks on the golf course

Dinner at the Golf Club followed – a feast accompanied with the wonderful Robert Oatley wines. Some great acoustic entertainment from local strummer Shane had us all dancing – bare foot on the grass! Truly a wonderful evening!

We were up bright and early on Friday morning – those playing 18 holes of golf earlier than the rest of us – thankfully! We were met at the golf club by the delightful Nick Maynard from Maui Jim, who fitted us individually with a pair of fabulous glasses – such service, such a treat, such rockstars! Once you’ve put a pair of these glasses on you’ll never look back (but if you do, the world will look a whole lot better!)

Maui Jim rockstars

The world looks better through Maui Jims!

SHE joined the golf clinic girls – never having picked up a stick (ah I think its a ‘club’!) it was great to learn the basics from resident golf pro Cherie. She was very patient and of course there was a mini competition to motivate us – French champagne with an orange label to the winner! Hmmm…memo – must practice more to win beautiful bubbles.

Girls golf clinic

The ladies golf clinic

A short ferry ride back to the Island and it was an afternoon of free time to sit by the pool and enjoy the sunshine. Big deep breath and …sigh! Now that’s what SHE calls a damn good Friday afternoon!

Feeling refreshed and relaxed, our group met for a 5 minute transfer to the marina to board one of the Cruise Indigo boats for a sunset cruise. It was a perfect night as we sipped champagne and took in the beauty of the Whitsundays. The sun sank in the west as we sailed by the stunning new Yacht Club. With an upmarket restaurant, a deck to enjoy a drink or three at pretty much anytime, and some great function space, this venue is a welcome addition to the Island.

Yacht Club

Hamilton Island Yacht Club

And it was here we enjoyed our final night on the Island. We worked our way through a menu accompanied by Robert Oatley wines – the wonderfully articulate Darren Jahns (whose enviable job seems to involve trotting around the country eating, drinking and talking about it!) has converted most of us to the Pinot Gris and …wait for it… the Robert Oatley Chardonnay! There… SHE said it! And it’s excellent. And SHE’s officially a fan.

A huge thank you to the Business Tourism team at Hamilton Island who looked after us so well – Julie and Erin – great job! SHE can’t wait to get back with one of our clients in late August – does this sound like SHE definitely has the ‘best job in the world’?