Having been winched out of my seat, I was shown to my suite, a ‘Flinders’. These suites are what is often categorised in the travel trade as ‘standard’, yet there is nothing ordinary about them. They manage to be spacious yet cosy; cool in that hip way that hasn’t (thankfully) resorted to theme or gimmick and, like all of the suites, they radiate style and detail. There are recycled spotted gum feature walls as well as commissioned artworks from local KI artists and each of the 21 suites has a private, uninterrupted and quite mesmerising ocean view. The only change in panorama is from the top ‘Osprey Pavilion’ located at the end of the lodge. This curved suite has a sunken lounge facing the ocean and a bathroom with vast granite bath pointing out over the wild bush land.
The lodge operates on an inclusive basis (with the exception of some fabulous special cellar wines) and therefore all meals, touring, wines, spirits, genuinely friendly service and hours spent gawping at the view and exploring it, are included. Following lunch, I joined Kate, one of the guides, for a cliff top walk. It was a blustery day and I found myself nicely buffeted, thankfully mainly inland, as the cliff edge is excitingly close (but not too close Captain Safety) and as I peer over the side the water froths beautifully. An hour or so later, my head is full of Latin plant names, bird species and a brief history of the island, all delivered with the self-depreciating sense of humour that Kate, like so many Australian’s, possesses. The rain arrived just as I returned to the main lodge, but this is where I think the lodge comes in to its own. Sitting in the Great Room, a glass of red wine in hand, I watched as the storm soldiered inland and battered the glass. Disappointingly it passed quickly but the scene was replaced with two wedge-tailed eagles riding the thermals and a perfect rainbow arc, so there were no complaints