Calm, comfortable and convenient self contained accommodation is the hallmark of The Sebel Bowral Heritage Park. Use it as a well appointed base for exploring the Southern Highlands or a restful retreat with small excursions around the beautiful town of Bowral.
When furniture retailer Harry Sebel opened the Sebel Townhouse in Sydney in 1963, it quickly cornered the market as home away from home for international celebrities. Anyone old enough to remember the music scene of the Seventies may recall fans outside the hotel screaming for a glimpse of ABBA or Sherbet. Elton John chose the Sebel Townhouse for his surprise wedding reception to sound engineer Renate Blauel on Valentine’s Day in 1984, and the who’s who of rock and roll were often spotted enjoying a drink or three in the hotel’s famous bar.
The chain has since expanded to more than 20 properties, and its Bowral establishment, The Sebel Bowral Heritage Park, is an elegant collection of residences in the heart of the Southern Highlands. Tucked discreetly away on a Bowral street, it is far removed from the original hotel’s colourful and often headline grabbing history.
From the inconspicuous entrance on Kangaloon Road, down the sweeping driveway past historic Iver Buck Cottage (now a private home) and a manicured village green style lawn, everything about Sebel Heritage Park feels calm and composed. The road winds through a community of Alex Popov designed townhouses, home to permanent residents, with signposts directing short stay guests to the contemporary accommodation at the far end of the complex.
Our home for the night is a spacious one bedroom apartment with garden views and has everything we need for a comfortable stay. A handwritten welcome note from the Sebel team is a nice touch on arrival, and a complimentary box of chocolates from Bowral’s Sweets & Treats is soon demolished.
Glass doors from the living area slide open onto a cosy balcony and a glimpse of the afternoon sun setting in the western sky. The open plan lounge, dining and kitchen layout offers plenty of room to prepare and enjoy a meal, then settle in to watch a movie or curl up with a good book. A remote operated fireplace soon takes the chill off the cool evening air. Longer stay guests will appreciate the laundry facilities tucked away behind folding doors in the bathroom.
The king sized bed with crisp sheets and cloud like pillows is dangerously comfortable and perfect for a well earned weekend sleep in. Guests looking for a bit more activity can visit the gym for a workout or swim a few laps of the heated indoor pool, a short stroll from our apartment.
Location is surely a major drawcard to The Sebel Bowral Heritage Park, with many of the Southern Highlands’ attractions within walking distance. Keen golfers only have to wheel their clubs a few hundred metres to tee off over the lush fairways of Bowral Golf Club. The Bradman Museum and International Cricket Hall of Fame complex (open 10am to 5pm daily) is a pleasant stroll away and will keep cricket fans of all ages entertained for hours. Bowral Public School Markets in Bendooley Street (second Saturday of the month) is a few blocks away, and those on the hunt for antiques and vintage wares will find plenty to pick through at Dirty Janes, with more than 75 dealers spread across a huge warehouse style space in Banyette Street.
Breakfast, lunch and dinner options are plentiful with Bowral’s popular cafes and restaurants offering delicious bites, from the perfect pie to take away Thai. For a special meal, two local favourites are even closer to home: the two hatted Biota Dining is directly across the road from the Sebel, and Bistro Officina (also hatted) is just around the corner. If you fancy an aperitif before dinner, both have fabulous bars too.
With so many sights and venues within cooee, it’s tempting to park the car, pull on the walking shoes and make this a winter weekend all about Bowral, in many ways the grande dame of the Highlands. And just as its rock and roll Sydney cousin catered to its clients, The Sebel Bowral Heritage Park seems well attuned to its surroundings and offers just what guests are looking for.
The Sebel Bowral Heritage Park
9 Kangaloon Road, Bowral