The Peak Apartments in Thredbo opened in 2009. Rachael Oakes-Ash beds down to see if they pass the Mary Millionaire luxe test.
There are some times when I have to take one for the team. I realise not all my readers are on the pauper wages of a dying industry once known as journalism. Which is why I ‘agreed’ to review one of Thredbo’s finest luxury apartments for those who drive German, drink French and wear Italian.
Luxury is a term bandied around by those who think they get it but clearly don’t. Too many accommodation properties self appoint themselves five stars when really they should be three. But for those who think nothing of spending big on nightly rates luxury is often so much more.
Yes, yes, thread count matters, the brand of the stereo, impeccable intuitive service and Michelin style room service but what people really value is time. The rest is just de rigeur.
Time spent with friends, time spent with family, time away from the digital masses, time creating memories (good ones hopefully) in a hassle free environment where everything else has been thought of for you and if it hasn’t it is one call away.
That is luxury.
Despite my lowly wages and bank manager’s frustration, I am no stranger to the world of luxe. My alter ego, Mary Millionaire, considers luxury her right and is the first to lay down my credit card after a glass of bubbles to purchase a bottle of French then once consumed shout the bar.
Shame she’s not there when it is time to pay the tab.
As a travel journalist I have dined on Michelin, stayed in Relais Chateaux, heli skied in private charters, swam in my private pool and slept at the front of the plane. All while wondering if I would make my next overdraft payment. Though my friends in the upper socio economic elements of society say in that case I am not that different to those who pay full price for these things.
There are few true luxury properties in the Australian ski fields, most are privately owned by the top guns who like to keep it free for a last minute ski sojourn for themselves, family or friends, and don’t need the rental revenue. But even then few compare when you put them next to the world’s best ski hotels.
So in the first week of the school holidays I consider myself lucky to score Apartment 2 at The Peak in Thredbo where the first thing you notice is the view. A wall of glass in the open plan lounge, kitchen, dining area provides a picture perfect twenty four seven snow report.
Ok it’s not the first thing you notice but it is the one that impresses the most and stays with you long after you’ve left the building.
The Peak apartments were opened in 2009 after extensive redesign with refurbished exposed stone and wood and a total luxe upgrade. The building has nine apartments ranging from one bedroom to three bedroom with loft that have sold from around $890k to $1.2million plus plus.
You enter on Bobuck lane and all security is computerised so no need for a key, just remember the code to enter a marble foyer and a lift to take you to you apartment of choice with another code to enter your abode.
Each unit has a much coveted car spot in Thredbo village, under cover in a spacious garage. Ski lockers are in the lobby and extra storage lockers in the garage.
My two bedroom plus media room pimping pad has Miele, Smeg, Bosche and Ilve appliances and some seriously impressive light fittings (luxury is in the detail, no scrimping or cutting of corners here) and switches. The marble bathrooms have heated tiles, there’s a full service laundry and a fridge the size of my house.
Plenty of hall hooks to hang ski jackets, an iPod connected stereo, wifi (though remember it’s Australian rural region so don’t expect anything fast), television in bedrooms and lounge, high ceilings and stunning artwork including Reg Mombasa’s finest.
Sure, there’s no sauna or steam room or hot tub but the balcony space is limited so a BBQ and dining set take up the space for the summer months instead.
Want to see for yourself? Here’s my rough hand held video from my iPhone when I arrived.
For me this is luxury because for me luxury is about convenience and space. I don’t have to find a car spot, I have one. I don’t have to worry about losing door keys, I don’t need them. I don’t have to find a shared laundry, wrestle with my gear up stairs or even walk to the village shuttle (it’s right outside my door).
I don’t have to squeeze my mammoth amounts of luggage into a kiddy sized space and I also don’t have to haul arse to a restaurant and spend big dollars on food worth half the price because I have a kitchen and can eat what I want.
Did I mention the kitchen has everything, absolutely everything you would need for a dinner party for ten (well, except the food and guests of course)?
The beauty of staying in an apartment is you actually don’t want to leave, so there’s more time to relax. I have personally never found ski holidays relaxing, I find them exhausting, fun, but exhausting. Staying in your own space means living to your own rules not the schedule or time code of someone else’s.
Let’s just say my five nights at The Peak kept Mary Millionaire happy.
The even better news is you don’t have to be mega loaded to live the life of Mary either.
Prices start from $1165 for two nights during value season (that’s $145 each per night for four of you or $97 for six), $2265 for two nights during shoulder season (that’s $188 each per night for six of you) or $3225 during peak season ($268 per person per night for six people).
For more information on The Peak and other apartment, chalet and lodge accommodation in Thredbo contact Gregg or Dani at Visit Snowy Mountains or 61 (0) 2 6457 7132.
What do you think defines luxury on a ski trip? Do you care about where you stay or are you just happy for a bed?
Rachael Oakes-Ash was hosted by Visit Snowy Mountains