Do you ever find yourself stuck in the vortex of the everyday rat race, and forget how amazingly epic life is here in paradise? If you’re not local to the coast, perhaps you should be or you’re well overdue for a visit. We have some beautiful locations here on the Sunshine Coast. From the wineries and winter getaways in Montville to shopping on Hastings Street, exercising at Alex Headland (or ‘Lorna Jane hill’ as my Fiancé calls it), coffee dates in Buderim or swimming at Happy Valley. We are hashtag blessed people! After much research, I took myself on a road trip in my Audi Q7 to discover and share with you these beautiful locations. Whether you’re local or a traveller, here are my favourite must-visit hotspots (with bonus humour for added interest)…
The first location? Let’s drive! 45 minutes later and I arrive at one of my favorite places in the world.
As you all know, I’m a huge fan of all things traditional. I love nothing more than laying eyes on anything classically beautiful, yet well looked after and loved. AKA: my house. Naturally, this can be difficult in Australia as we’re such a young country. I should probably move to Lake Como… Anyway, The Sebel Noosa has the perfect blend of traditional charm and modern conveniences, making it the perfect spot on Hastings Street for me.
The rooms are exactly what you’d expect of a casual Noosa experience – unpretentiously beautiful, comfortable and affordable. You could happily live in these huge apartments, but with the added bonus of daily servicing. Win! I walk out my door and within seconds I’m sitting at Aroma’s in Hasting Street eating smashed avo and drinking a Chai Latte in my active wear. I know what you’re thinking, “wow, she’s healthy”. However, I’m really just cancelling out the bowl of seafood pasta and the bottle Champagne devoured at Bistro C the night before.
A bright, neutral colour palette, tick. A sparkling pool with white balustrade walk bridge, tick. Hamptons inspired apartments, although I’d say they are more classic coastal, tick. This place is my jam! For someone that despises traffic and crowds, the entry is parallel to Hastings Street on Noosa Parade which totally works for me, and my completely erratic anxiety levels.
The pools (yes, there are two) are lovely and private. The gym, fully equipped for me to work off the pasta from the night before. By the afternoon, I’m horizontal, positioned comfortably on the crisp white sand of main beach enjoying the best part of what Noosa has to offer. Happy days!
A quick lap of Hastings Street and I’m heading just down the road to my next location…
Have you ever walked into a shop and legitimately and medically died and gone to heaven? I have. Twice. Once when I was 17 and I first walked into a Domayne furniture store. The second time I found myself in a physically deceased state was at the front entrance of Coastal Vintage in Noosa. It’s a festival for your eyeballs and a nautical lover’s dream. Owner, Sally Oulton spent over a decade travelling the 7 seas, which naturally empowered her to curate a collection inspired by the sea. And that she did, my friends.
If you’re one that loves to collect treasures from near and far, you’ll find a visit to Coastal Vintage quite the enjoyable one. You’ll see portholes, oars, ships wheels, anchors, traditional Japanese glass floats, maritime charts, fishing reels, flags and even an antique brass diving helmet. How oarsome! Too much?
For me, I love their range of décor, coral and unique bits and bobs like coastal inspired coat hooks and nautical lighting options. In every nook, there are beautiful treasures to be discovered, and I can only imagine the incredible history behind some of these pieces.
As a serious lover of DIY and upcycling, Coastal Vintage are the only supplier on the Sunshine Coast of Jolie Paints. If you’re looking for a weekend challenge, Sally and her team can supply the goods, literally! And if you’re lucky, they may even offer you a 10-minute crash course on DIY while you’re there.
Coastal Vintage have recently reopened a bigger and better premise just down the road from their previous shop, which means even more nautical goodness to be found. There goes my credit card balance… Arghhhhhhhhh!
Catch you later Noosa, it’s been swell (get it..? swell?) Anyway, I’m back in my Q7 and crusing down the beautiful winding coastline…
hamptons style heaven…
It’s now lunch time and I can’t think of a better venue than this one.
As their motto states – “a Sunshine Coast icon, revitalised”. Its risky business taking an entire yacht club, fully renovating it and creating a Hamptons style restaurant and function space. Will it work, will it flop? That is the question! But that’s exactly the risk new owners of Pier 33 at the Mooloolaba Marina were willing to take. The result? A magnificent overhaul of an existing building with fabulous potential, serving delicious food and drinks, all with a cool and casual vibe.
Since opening, I’ve frequented the private dining room, the function space and dined both inside and out. Snaps for me! On arrival, you’re greeted with a grand entrance that’s both stylish and homely. Almost as inviting as free drinks on a Friday. Tongue and groove wall panelling, light timber flooring, a gorgeous white buffet and Strelitzia Nicolai in every nook!
What I love most about the main restaurant, is the use of negative space. There’s room to move which naturally allows your eye to move through the restaurant and rest on the stunning water view. It’s clean, it’s crisp and it’s coastal in true Hamptons style. There are dining booths splashed with navy and white, brought together with rainbows and unicorns. By that I mean touches of rattan, greenery, statement oars hung as wall art, and a huge striped feature wall. Subway tiles are a non-negotiable obviously, and they clad the main bar like a boss… Yummy!
If you’re a foodie that appreciates a divine view, Pier 33 should be higher on your list then pretty much anything. That includes the beach, dare I say it! You’ll absolutely love the location, the interior and of course the cool vibes for all the reasons why we call this the Sunshine Coast. And make sure you order the prawn and bug pasta, it is sooooo delish! Or the whole steamed fish, or the charred Broccolini, actually the cocktails are good too. Enjoy!
Now, this next Sunshine Coast location is super close to my heart and I feel that owner Jess and I are sisters from another Mister (although she’s much prettier than I am!). As the Mooloolaba wharf precinct continues to develop with funky new food and retail outlets, introducing Meraki Thread Co. A boutique, eco-conscious shop specialising in vintage clothing, accessories and homewares. Oh, how my heart sings!
If you’ve seen literally any one of my interior blog posts and/or the clothes I wear, I am all about slow fashion and ethical purchasing. I buy loads of preloved designer clothes as well as hunt Gumtree for furniture and décor, for both myself and my clients. You can feel good about purchasing preloved, as it’s good for the earth. Added bonus: It’s much easier to convince your future husband that your new acquisition is a great idea when you’re saving the world. Low key and all, but you’re actually a superhero.
The meaning of Meraki: “To put your love and soul into something, leaving a piece of your creative self in your work’. This new shop soothes my soul. Jess hand picks and stocks vintage clothes from all over the world, as well as a local and ethically sourced range of labels in fashion and swimwear. Let’s not even start on the locally made, clay earrings they stock. Ridic!
The shop itself is simply vibing to the max with global influences and Jess’s ethos of sustainable and ethical living. The display racks and tables have all been purchased second hand and upcycled by Jess and her husband. But you wouldn’t know – they’re gorgeous! The worldly charm comes from their travels near and far and Jess’s love for the earth.
With Mikimi Resortwear relocating from the Esplanade right next door, and Bedouin Traders a friendly neighbour, I can certainly see the new wharf becoming quite the fashion hub! Which brings me to my next must-visit…
luxury at the wharf…
If you opened the dictionary of hashtags and looked up #perfection and perhaps #allwhiteeverything, you would lay eyes on an interior shot of Bedouin Traders in Mooloolaba. My first thought, “I’m dead, again. Dam it! I’ve died an honourable death at 34 and arrived sweetly in the white clouds of heaven?” Me, to the Lady behind the counter: “I knew God was a woman!” After I hugged her it turns out, her name is Amanda, and she’s a local. Again, with the morbid references. Sorry people!
Owner Brad Johnson has a serious eye for style, filling his shop with luxury items sourced locally and globally. And when I say style, I mean the most beautiful collection of pieces ever. When Mooloolaba wharf released their quaint and coastal shop fronts for rent, Brad jumped on the opportunity to open a sister store to their existing Peregian Springs shop.
Upon entry sits the most beautiful bespoke door handle made by Melbourne designer Suzie Stanford using a collection of brass treasures (must see photos below).
Look left – two custom white cabinets built into the wall with arched detail, tongue and groove cupboards, styled with a carefully curated selection of beautiful things. Note* I need to confess my deep and eternal love for arches. Very Halcyon House like! Edited note* Eat it 1980’s, 90’s and 00’s, you were wrong! Our love for arched doorways and exterior facades from the 1970’s will live on foreverrrrr! A stand out for me was their range of Gallivant fragrances, and if you’ve heard of Gallivant you’ll already be impressed. A team of artisans make the hand made fragrance oil in the South of France, where the concentrate is then bottled in England and to us here on the coast. Fancy!
Look up – huge 4 meter raked ceilings with exposed beams, suspended white track lighting which almost gives the space an Industrial feel. But it doesn’t, because of two statement, brass Moroccan pendants perfectly positioned above the curved wood and marble counter.
Look down – crisp white epoxy flooring.
Look right, and everywhere else – A stunning collection of artwork by Alissa Wright, Dinah Wakefield and Emma Nancarrow. Beautiful, ethically sourced fashion labels like Paddo to Palmy, Catherine Murphy the Label, and Elka Collective. Did you know Bedouin Traders are the only Australian stockists of the gorgeous brand Banjanan, who create handmade prints and embroidery impossible to recreate? (See pink dress below).
I drove, I visited, I blogged. What a way to spend a couple of days checking out some of the best locations on the coast. We are spoilt rotten when it comes to natural beauty, tourism, opportunity and regional growth. We’re seeing some fabulous start-ups and funky new businesses pop up everywhere. I tell you, once all the roadworks are sorted and perhaps triple the size of Nicklin Way, we’ll be sweet!
PS: That’s juice, not vodka. No alcohol before 9 am in my books!
PPS: All imagery by my work husband Cade Mooney