Destinations

The best places to stay in the Whitsundays

Bask in winter sunshine at these freshly minted and upgraded resorts.

By Helen Anderson
Pool - Haymen Island by Intercontinental

Hayman Island by InterContinental

Fresh from its second multi-million-dollar makeover in five years, Hayman Island reopens this month as the rebranded resort Hayman Island by InterContinental. Promising "a new chapter of immersive luxury", the resort on the Whitsundays' most northerly island has 166 rooms, suites and beachfront villas, and new private residences set on a hillside above the bay. Features include five eateries and bars, a new spa with 13 treatment rooms, a fitness centre and kids' club. The resort was rebuilt after Cyclone Yasi in 2011, and again in 2014, when the One & Only group took over management with an $80-million refurbishment. The most recent $100-million makeover follows the resort's closure in 2017 when Cyclone Debbie ripped through the Whitsundays.
The Beach Villaa at Hayman Island by InterContinental

Daydream Island

After a $100-million rebuild, Whitsundays favourite Daydream Island reopened in April with 277 rooms and suites with garden, pool or ocean views, a spa, marine-focused kids' club, and three restaurants and bars. The jewel in its crown, however, is the revival of its Living Reef, a 1.5-million-litre lagoon with a man-made reef, now expanded, wrapping 200 metres around the main building. Guests can take guided snorkelling tours of the lagoon, view more than 100 species of marine life from an underwater observatory, and join resident marine biologists to swim with stingrays.
Daydream Island, Whitsundays

The Bungalows

Three stylish beachfront villas at Mission Beach opened last month, a project by the team that runs Bedarra Island Resort just offshore. Each villa on the two-hectare property has a private path leading to the beach, and shares a pool, dining room and kitchen in the main building. Villas can be booked separately or as a whole.
Bungalow Entry, The Bungalows