In the middle of the largest concentration of mineral springs in Australia is a striking new complex of contemporary luxury villas, the Hepburn Springs Escape Villas.
It’s the newest extension to the Hepburn Bathhouse & Spa, located inside the Hepburn Mineral Springs Reserve, which has been welcoming bathers since 1865.
Karen Golden, general manager of tourism and wellness at Belgravia Leisure (which manages the villas), believes the proximity to the allegedly healing waters is what makes the new lodgings so special.
“This is the only property that fronts the reserve,” she tells Broadsheet. “It has that unique feel that you’re escaping, relaxing and removing the noise of daily life. We encourage the feeling of reconnecting with each other, with nature, with yourself.” The 14 new villas – each over 75 square metres – have private balconies overlooking the surrounding bushland, double-sided gas-log fireplaces, double showers and double spa baths (which you can fill with mineral bathing salts).
The striking, radial design is from CBG Architects. Each villa, or “pod”, is elevated on stilts, and features sustainable design features like solar panels and a naturally filtered water-harvesting system.
“The key elements are a feeling of uncluttered luxury, a minimalist feel that allows people to connect to nature,” says Golden. “For example, the gardens have been uniquely landscaped to reflect the region and provide a variety of seasonal foliage.”
Just minutes away at the Hepburn Bathhouse & Spa Sanctuary, popular experiences include twilight bathing by candlelight and private soaks in the red mineral water that’s high in volcanic minerals unique to the region. The spa treatments, ranging from 30 minutes to seven hours, focus on the supposed health benefits of the minerals rather than pampering. Day packages include massages, samples of regional produce and champagne.
The villas are also just a 10-minute drive to the boutique shops, renowned restaurants and small galleries located in the village of Daylesford.