Byron Bay is a coastal eden that intwines yawning white beaches to lush rural paddocks. The locals promote a laid-back surf/hippy culture and move at a relaxed tempo. This outlook meshes seamlessly with the upscale boutiques and chic accomodation options. If you cannot switch off and recharge in Byron Bay, you are doing it wrong!
The Atlantic is a group of palm-laced, plantation-style guesthouses designed for self-sufficient guests who enjoy communal spaces, giving you the familiar feel of a seaside vacation home. Each room is utterly unique, immaculately laid out with modern art and coastal artefacts nestled within the pristine, weatherboard exterior.
The Tropical and Albatross Rooms possess super-cool interiors, including walls covered from floor to ceiling with art designed by past guests of the Atlantic. The Tropical Rooms boast wide timber balconies that overlook the tropical gardens, and are offset beautifully by a crisp white interior. Alternatively, the Albatross Rooms have a darker, moodier presence and feature Moroccan-tiled outdoor showers in the private courtyard – a divine luxury after a long day surfing the Byron breaks. If you want to try something cosier yet uber-trendy, there is a reconditioned Airstream that provides an all-American glamping experience.
EATING & DRINKING
It is worth noting that the Atlantic Guesthouse is just that – a guesthouse. There is no room service nor on-site restaurant or bar, however this is one of the things we love the most. The Atlantic is broken up into four communal areas, each with it’s own kitchen, lounge and BBQ. The kitchen has a shared fridge, and offers all the utensils you will need to prepare a seafood feast or charcuterie board at the end of the day. If you appreciate solitude when preparing food, don’t worry, there is rarely more than 1-2 other guests in those areas at any one time. And if you enjoy making new friends visiting from all over the globe, well, this is precisely why you choose a haven like the Atlantic.
WHAT IT HAS
Four kitchens (three indoor/one outdoor); Four BBQs; Outdoor lap pool with shower; Bocce ‘stadium’; Fire pit; Library; iPod dock; DVD collection; Surfboards/bodyboards to borrow (for free!); Boardgames.
We spent the majority of each day coming and going from the beach, living in singlets and sundresses. We highly recommend you pack exercise gear if you are up for the stunning walk to the Cape Byron Lighthouse (and eastern most point of Australia). When night rolls around we were peppered with options, from laid-back Aussie pubs to dimly lit wine bars and gourmet restaurants. Best to bring something smart casual to wear to dinner, and girls, no heels are necessary in this casual beach town.
OUT & ABOUT
Our first stop is always to Balcony Bar, perched high above the crowds and a perfect vantage point for cocktails + people-watching. Around the corner is the famous Beach Hotel, a massive pub that is best visited in the afternoon for a cold beer and to hang with friends. Aside from the nightlife, Byron Bay is best enjoyed with an active mindset so the gorgeous white beaches need to be your focus. Our favourite breakfast/lunch joints are Bayleaf Cafe (100m from The Atlantic), or if you don’t mind driving it is worth the trek to The Farm for delicious fresh produce. For dinner, we love the friendly staff and relaxed atmosphere at Rae’s on Wategos.
The Atlantic is right in the middle of Byron Bay. The closest airport is Ballina, a short 20 minute shuttle from the guesthouses, otherwise it is a 90 minute drive from Coolangatta Airport (Gold Coast) which offers more frequent flights.
Both airports provide shuttle services from the airport to the doorstep of the Atlantic.
The hanging chairs and lounges are designed for relaxing on the deck, and the freshly manicured lawns are littered with comfy bean bags. Australian Water Dragons are your permanent neighbours, and they will stay and enjoy your company if you don’t make any sudden movements.
$150 – 400 USD
$200 – 550 AUD (Australian Dollar)