The Sauna at Bondi Icebergs
Do like the Scandinavians this winter and visit a sauna. The one at Bondi Icebergs is lesser known than its iconic baths, but salty locals love the sauna during winter. Sitting on pool-deck level with an impressive outlook, the sauna is open through winter, from 6am–6.20pm daily (apart from Thursday when it's closed for cleaning). Be warm. Feel good.
$6.50 will get you access to the pool and sauna.
Escape to the bush at Billabong Retreat
As the name suggests, this retreat is on an escarpment rising from a natural Billabong, and it’s just 45 minutes from Sydney CBD in Maraylya. It’s easy to access and although not far from the city, feels remote and tranquil, ideal for a mini, nature-oriented getaway.
Billabong is a certified eco retreat offering stays from one to seven days. Its in-house chef cooks wholesome, vegetarian meals three times a day. With a focus on yoga, mindfulness and meditation, you can choose to attend various workshops and classes during your stay. Reiki and facials are available too. Cabins have luxurious outdoor bathtubs on the deck, and all common areas have fireplaces.
Bathe in an aquamedic pool at Gillian Adams Salon & Spa
Gillian Adams Salon & Spa is in a grand, unmissable Art Deco building off the Pacific Highway in Turramurra. You’ll feel the luxury as soon as you step inside. The staff is professional and attentive; before you even begin your treatment there is fresh fruit in the waiting room and high tea offered in the courtyard gardens.
It’s a full-service salon and spa here, with numerous hair, beauty and wellness treatments, but people come here to experience the aquamedic pool. The hydrotherapy pool features ozonated water, which allegedly hydrates the body and is meant to ease muscular tension. The pool is also an aesthetic experience; dimly lit and made from imported Italian marble under a domed roof, lithe Grecian figurines are carved into it, and a spout head jets water gently from above. Post swim you can bundle up in fluffy white towels and robes.
You can enjoy the pool with all other spa packages or a 50-minute Aquamedic Pool & Steam on its own is $70.
Get a facial at SpaQ
Set up like a swanky downtown London barber, SpaQ at QT Hotel Sydney specialises in custom facials for men and women. Using Australian skincare brand USPA, you can get an express facial in your lunch break (30 minutes for $95) or a more elaborate, custom treatment for one hour ($155).
There’s also a barber on-site and you get complimentary use of the hotel’s hammam-inspired steam and ice room before your treatment.
Hot chocolate, whenever, wherever
Daisy’s Milkbar in Petersham makes its hot chocolate with house-made fudge, and Rustic Pearl in Surry Hills serves Callebaut hot chocolate in a bowl, with orange blossom. Pana Chocolate in Alexandria does a vegan hot choc with brazil-nut milk, vanilla beans and cinnamon, or if you want a no-muck-around hot chocolate head to Kakawa for milk and chocolate made on a stove in-store.