Perhaps you’re spoiling yourself with a once-off treat for a special occasion. Maybe you’re simply a champagne-on-arrival, lagoon lounge kind of traveller, fond of the finer things in life. Either way, you’ll need this enticing list of ten multi-star luxury accessible accommodation options, where indulgence meets inclusivity.
Each of these luxury accessible accommodation properties have taken care to offer accessibility without compromising on glamour. So, pack your bags and pop the bubbly – you’re in for a treat!
1. Empire Apartment Hotel, Rockhampton QLD
Why settle for the royal treatment when you can have an experience worthy of an emperor? Empire Apartments have five purpose-built luxury accessible apartments.
The rooms include a king bed or twins, with the option to supply an electric bed and other mobility equipment as required. Open-plan bathrooms, a fully-equipped kitchen, in-room laundry, lounge room, and a balcony complete the picture.
There are also accessible car parks directly adjacent to the lifts. The landscapes rooftop pool (including mechanical lift swing, on request), all three onsite restaurants, and the gym are all wheelchair accessible.
2. Salt, Yeppoon QLD
A nearby coastal alternative is a 4.5 star apartment at Salt, set on Yeppoon’s Main Beach. The complex has 50 spacious rooms of varying sizes, with a wheelchair-accessible configuration available in the Two Bedroom Beachfront option.
Every apartment boasts ocean views, looking out across to Rosslyn Bay or Great Keppel Island. There’s lift access, open-plan design, balcony, laundry, fully-equipped kitchen, bathroom, and more – and each can luxury accessible apartment can accommodate up to five people.
Salt sits across the road from the resort-style Yeppoon Lagoon, which has an aquatic wheelchair available.
3. Hyatt Regency, Sydney NSW
Nothing spells luxury like harbour views! Set in the dining and entertainment precinct of Darling Harbour, the Hyatt Regency offers two luxury accessible accommodation options. Both have bathrooms with circulation room, flip-down shower bench, adjustable shower heads, lever taps, toilet backrests, and grab-rails throughout.
The accessible Regency Club City View room has plenty of bed-side transfer space. The Standard City Side accessible room is larger, and has a separate lounge room.
Dine in style at Sailmakers restaurant, grab a coffee or cocktail at the Lobby Lounge, and soak up the city skyline views on the open rooftop of the Zephyr Bar. Near the hotel, you’ll find lift access down to Darling Harbour, with its aquarium, Madame Tussauds, and wildlife park.
4. Freycinet Lodge, TAS
With the picturesque Great Oyster Bay in one direction and the Hazard mountains in the other, this luxury accessible lodge nestled in Tasmania’s east coast national park is easy on the eyes.
The dedicated accessible room, aptly named The Lodge King, is specially oriented to soak up the glorious sunsets.
You can also take up one of the lodge’s special packages, such as a romantic dinner or scenic flight. The natural delights of Wineglass Bay, Coles Bay, and the Friendly Beaches are all a short drive away.
5. Westin, Brisbane QLD
Situated beside the Queen Street Mall and Brisbane’s South Bank, the 5-star Westin makes for a luxurious city staycation. The vibe is relaxed and funky, complete with an aviation-inspired casual dining area, the Charles, that transforms into a jazz bar at night.
The accessible room comes with the option for an interconnecting room, and has a large, open plan bathroom. At least one bedside has transfer clearance, and there are lowered amenities throughout the room (including aircon controls, and a pull-down arm for the wardrobe hanging rail).
The luxury hotel’s trump card, however, has got to be the Nautilus swim-up pool bar, with custom cocktails and an all-day menu, accessible using a pool chair hoist.
6. Hotel Brooklyn, Manchester UK
Hotel Brooklyn is located in Manchester, but you’d swear you were staying at the coolest hipster luxury accommodation in New York City. They are market leaders in accessibility, with eighteen ‘Liberty Suites’ crafted by Motionspot (an award-winning specialist in accessible design).
Nine of the suites are wheelchair-accessible, and the others are ambulant-accessible. Two of the accessible rooms also feature concealed ceiling tracks (the first of their kind in Manchester), designed to be adapted by staff prior to your arrival, to meet your specific requirements.
7. Bannisters Pavilion, Mollymook NSW
Bannisters has two locations in Mollymook – be sure to book the luxury accessible accommodation at Bannisters Pavilion (as Bannisters By The Sea does not have accessible rooms).
The accessible rooms are kitted out in Instagram-ready beach-chic decor, with an abundance of natural light, perfect for shutterbugs!
If you’re hoping to try the Rick Stein at Bannisters restaurant, there is a courtesy bus that will transfer you between sites. Alternatively, stay at the Pavilion and enjoy the Mediterranean-meets-modern Aussie fare at the Rooftop Bar and Grill.
8. BIG4 Sandstone Point Holiday Resort, QLD
Who says luxury accessible accommodation can’t also be family friendly? One of BIG4’s Premier (luxury) Parks, Sandstone Point, serves up plenty of south-east Queensland charm for parents and kids alike.
All amenities throughout the park are wheelchair-friendly. The designated accessible villas have level access, large doorways, open-plan bathrooms with railings and heat-restricted showers, and high-profile bed frames, suitable for lifters.
You can choose your villa location to suit your own preference, be it close to reception, near the pool area, or beside powered sites if you’re travelling with campers.
The pool’s S.R. Smith Pool Lifter can be booked for free within operating hours.
9. Intercontinental Hotel, San Francisco USA
In San Francisco’s SoMa neighbourhood, between the shopping and entertainment districts, sits this luxury accessible accommodation haven.
The spacious accessible rooms have two Queen beds, lots of circulation space, and enough storage to keep luggage out of the way. There is a sliding door to the bathroom, which has all the trimmings (including grab rails, lever taps, wheelchair-accessible basins, height-adjustable showers, and shower seats).
Enjoy a relaxing dip in the indoor pool and spa, both with pool seats, sip a delicious drink at Bar 888, or fuel up with dinner at Luce.
10. Qualia, Hamilton Island QLD
When it comes to luxury accessible accommodation, this adults-only, six-star Whitsundays retreat does not hold back.
There are two pavilion styles of accommodation to chose from, with accessible options in both. The accessible pavilions have loads of circulation space, plenty of bedside transfer room, and a bathroom with bathtub, roll-in shower, flip-down shower bench, grab rails, double sinks, and lowered amenities.
The Windward Pavilions are the larger of the two, with a private plunge pool and floor-to-ceiling views of the Coral Sea. That said, with sliding doors to a garden deck, the Leeward is just as lovely.
Make the most of the Pebble Beach recreation area with the climate-controlled infinity pool, sun lounges, catamarans, kayaks, and sailing trips. Both Long Pavilion and Pebble Beach Dining offer delicious meals. An electric golf buggy is included in your stay to make transfers even easier.
This story first appeared in Travel Without Limits magazine. You can subscribe here.