SOLAR SPRINGS RETREAT – Review John Pond with Sandra Tiltman


My wife Sandra and I wanted to recharge our batteries at a health spa not too far from Sydney, so after a 2 hour drive we arrived in Bundanoon home of Solar Springs Retreat. Here is mainly her review.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIf your body feels a bit sluggish after too much of the good life and over-eating, or you just want to get into better shape, maybe a visit to a health retreat is just what you need to reinvigorate yourself,

Giving up all the things you enjoy and adhering to strict diets is no fun, neither is boot camp style exercising, so to get back into shape requires a venue that allows you to choose your own pace.

I made it my mission to find a place where an exercise averse and comfort loving person, such as myself, would enjoy spending a few days to renew.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAfter doing some research, I discovered Solar Springs Health Retreat. They offer two to seven night packages that are designed to indulge and inspire. This sounded just the sort of place that would cater to my needs. Situated in the Southern Highlands town of Bundanoon, a quaint village that takes you back to yesteryear, it’s an easy two hour drive down the highway from Sydney. If driving does not appeal, catch the train to Bundanoon and Solar Springs will pick you up from the station.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI felt a sense of grandeur as I proceeded up the driveway, flanked by huge trees, to the main building, a former 1920’s Guest House. Set amidst beautiful park like gardens and situated on the escarpment overlooking Morton National Park, I thought this tranquil setting was indeed the right choice for me to begin my renewal.

From our room, overlooking the gardens, I was able to watch the arrival of kangaroos, rosellas, cockatoos, galahs and ducks each morning and evening.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERATo help me in my quest to regain my fitness levels, the daily programme offered a wide choice of activities including archery, aquarobics, bushwalks, yoga, gym classes, as well as specialised lectures from a life coach and a naturopath. The enormous indoor pool, with a bubbling spa at one end, was a great place to relax and get some exercise at the same time. The tennis court, where I enjoyed a game or two, was also a welcome diversion from my magazine reading.

I must confess that my favourite activities were the spa treatments. I enjoyed a very relaxing facial one morning, then in the afternoon I indulged in a full body massage. From the five facials available, I chose the “Solar Steam Infusion Facial” using papaya enzymes. Male guests are not forgotten, with the “Solar Men’s”, a special 55 minute facial for men only. My Swedish massage was just what I needed to get rid of the tension in my shoulders.

There were so many other beauty treatments available, apart from the facials and massages, I could have spent my entire stay in the spa.

Although there was not a wide choice, the food was excellent. For those watching their weight, there is not the temptation of multi-course menus and groaning buffet tables, such as one sees on cruise ships.

Don’t expect 5 star accommodations. Rooms are basic many have great panoramic views, Not all have their own bathrooms. The grounds are certainly 5 star.

Solar Springs Health Retreat is situated on the escarpment of the Morton National Park in the picturesque village of Bundanoon, in the beautiful Southern Highlands. situated just 1 and a half to 2 hours south-west of Sydney.

96 Osborn Avenue Bundanoon NSW 2578 Australia. Phone: Intl: +61 2 4883 6027 in Australia 1800 044 944

About John Pond, J.P.

Pioneer in television as producer of thousands of hours of TV shows on Australian and American television including Graham Kennedy, Tommy Leonetti, People in Conflict, Hollywood Bowl, Major Specials and Dr John‘s Casebook TV Shows. TV manager J. Walter Thompson & McCannErickson Advertising and head of production for Columbia Pictures TV. John changed careers to the hospitality industry working for Sydney’s top 5 star hotel as director of sales and marketing and GM. Then with Harrah’s/Caesar's World, the world’s largest hotel and casino group in Nevada. Playboy Magazine in Chicago, head of worldwide PR/Marketing, for their Resorts, Clubs, Hotels & Casinos. Producer at Fox Studios in Los Angeles. Co-creator of hit US network TV show Joker, Joker, Joker, first TV show to give away a million dollars. Writer travel articles for magazines and newspapers including Washington Post, New York Times, American Playboy as well as local Australian papers and magazines. In the USA represented many personalities including Frank Sinatra, John Wayne, Bob Hope, Mel Torme, and many other major names. John is Editor at Sea of Australia’s leading cruise magazine, Travel & Cruise writer for The Retiree Magazine, Destinations Magazine and Spectator Group of Newspapers. John reviews cruise ships, Destinations and Hotels, and is ably assisted by his Associate Editor Sandra Tiltman.
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