The Resort encircles the small Lake Crackenback. Image:: Courtesy Lake Crackenback
Luxury Accommodation | Tess Cook
To me, nothing says skiing luxury accommodation more than a kitchen and a couch – long days on the slopes call for afternoon couch time with some well-deserved nibbles – except of course for a fully stocked hotel breakfast buffet, and perhaps a sauna.
Yes, I want to have my cake and eat it too – which isn’t the motto of Lake Crackenback Resort, but it should be. Nestled at the very edge of the Kosciuszko National Park, the sprawling Resort is a bush retreat and a skiers’ stopover, a luxury hotel and family friendly, apartment style accommodation all tied together.
This best of all worlds feat is thanks in part to its location, Lake Crackenback Resort sits on over 100 acres at the edge of the Kosciuszko National Park, 12km from Thredbo and a mere 400m from the Perisher Ski Tube. While ski-in-ski-out is a wonderful thing, sprawling acres of year-round mountain biking and bush walking, a 9 hole golf course (also year round), tennis, kids activities like archery and trampolines and a quiet bush cabin are a lovely thing to come back to in the afternoon. The resort runs shuttles to the Ski Tube and the drive to Thredbo is short, so the hassle of getting to and from the slopes can be minimal and the payoff is your own apartment or house, with a spot for your car right out the front!
The bush setting is delightful and ideal for families, but there’s not scrimping on the luxury. The decadent fireside après cocktails in the Cuisine Bar, looking out over the lake, are all the more delicious after a day of skiing. I recommend the dips trio, which comes with warm crispy dipping bread, and a Baileys hot chocolate. Next door the Cuisine at Lake Crackenback Restaurant, where the Kangaroo is a must, is resplendent in candlelight and crisp linen; it also offers a room service menu, so you can enjoy the fine dining experience from the comfort of your own apartment.
The gym and pool complex caters for the exercise energiser bunnies but it’s the day spa you should be heading to if you want to unwind after a day of skiing! I treated myself to the hot stone massage, which is relaxation super-charged and the ideal way to take a skiing trip from weekend jaunt to indulgent getaway. Next time I’m having a facial.
Then there’s the breakfast buffet, thank you mushrooms on toast with a side of yogurt and fresh fruit for giving me the energy to ski all day!
Snow at Lake Crackenback on 26 August 2010. Image:: Courtesy Lake Crackenback
But more than the idyllic setting and the day spa, we found the charm of Lake Crackenback Resort to be the staff, who were helpful to a fault. From our wise-cracking barman and the quick, cheerful service at the restaurant the lovely girl on reception who opened up the Resort’s small convenience store when we had a late night ice-cream related emergency – the emergency being we had no ice-cream – everyone was delightful.
Lake Crackenback comes into its own in a whole new way in summer, with walks, fly-fishing, mountain biking, a ropes course, golf, tennis and its own private swimming lake! The guided walks alone are reason enough to visit in the warmer months. Along with the day treks, which include the famous Mt Kosciuszko walk to Australia’s highest peak, the resort is now running overnight walks to some of the most picturesque parts of the Kosciuszko National Park with gourmet camping included.
The resort comprises over 100 self-contained apartments and chalets ranging from studios to three bedroom luxury houses spread out over many acres. There is a ski and snowboard hire shop on site and equipment for all resort activities (golf, tennis, archery etc) is available free of charge. Mountain bikes are also available for hire.
Cuisine on Lake Crackenback is open daily with après in the bar each afternoon. There is a kids playroom adjacent to the restaurant.
The day spa is open daily with a range of treatments including massage, body scrubs, facials and waxing.
As the resort is outside the National Park there is no National Park entry fee, but if you’re visiting Thredbo you’ll still need a to purchase a Park entry permit as you drive into the Park.