RELAXED: The geisha bath immersion therapy at Stephanie’s Ocean Spa is a five-senses experience.
RELAXED: The geisha bath immersion therapy at Stephanie’s Ocean Spa is a five-senses experience. Contributed

Bliss on a stick

NOOSA wasn’t to blame.

Outrigger Little Hastings Street was faultless, too.

And Stephanie’s Ocean Spa tried its best.

But after 24 years of marriage and two kids, any attempt to enjoy a romantic weekend away was probably doomed to failure.

The itinerary itself was sex on a stick: two nights in the five-star Outrigger Little Hastings Street bordering Noosa National Park, a treatment on-site at Stephanie’s Ocean Spa, a candlelit dinner for two at the resort’s View Restaurant, some retail therapy followed by lunch overlooking Laguna Bay from Noosa Surf Club’s veranda, our first dinner at berardo’s restaurant and bar on Noosa’s famous strip, and sampling wine and cheese while reclining on a short gondola ride.

And I had embraced the concept, at least with all the passion a woman can muster after a full week’s work plus a morning spent doing housework and ensuring the teenagers and dog wouldn’t starve in our absence.

But even the best-laid plans for love in the suburbs can come unstuck.

And that happened soon after we parked under our third floor suite and walked across to our appointment at Stephanie’s.

We were booked in for a 30-minute couple’s geisha bath immersion therapy, followed by a 60-minute essential massage.

The stresses of a long week peeled away as we snuggled in fluffy white robes and slippers in the relaxation room and sipped herbal and fruit cocktails.

In the private couple’s retreat, our Love Geisha hydrotherapy treatment was explained as a carefully balanced therapeutic soak with an Asian influence using delicate florals, delicious fruits and sweet aromatic herbs via the air-injected hydro-massage system of the geisha spa.

The tub treatment also uses seven lights representing seven Chakras to relax and rejuvenate.

I couldn’t remember the last time I had abandoned the four-minute shower for an indulgent soak. So we quickly shed our robes and slippers, slithered into the bath and allowed its warmth (an ideal 36.6C) and aromas to envelope us.

The addition of Stephanie’s Signature Geisha milk bath and Motherhood essential oil, the rose petals floating on top, and glasses of organic wine caressed our souls.

And as classical music filled the room, the bath steam mixed with the candle’s yellow glow, and natural light through the open window brought the rainforest indoors.

Our five-senses experience was complete.

Time to turn on the bubbles.

We bounced around the tub to maximise the massage effect from the water jets.

That’s when it all went pear shaped.

We noticed the water levels were dropping. Lower and lower.

Was this part of the therapy? We turned off the bubbles, then realised one of us must have tripped the bathplug.

The result was a hastened retreat and twiddling of thumbs until the bell signalled time for our massage.

Thankfully, therapists Kate and Sarah soon made us forget this little incident and we drifted off to happy thoughts of the weekend ahead.

Back in our self-contained “treetop” suite, we were a world away from busy Hastings Street.

But no sooner had we settled into the stunning view of the rainforest and Laguna Bay than the next blow to the romantic weekend came via mobile phone.

Our very apologetic caller had to cancel our gondola booking because Ricardo, of Gondolas of Noosa, was flat on his back in pain.

So daydreams of Venice while gliding along the Noosa River were sunk.

Maybe a movie on Austar would “float our boat” again.

We settled on the latest release Couple’s Retreat.

While the comedy about four couples with marriage problems receiving tough-love therapy on an island paradise wasn’t an ideal anniversary choice, the irony made us laugh even harder.

Before long, friends also celebrating their anniversary at the resort had arrived, ready for our five-minute stroll to Hastings Street and the seven-course degustation menu at berardo’s.

This was a treat we’d all been meaning to do for years and the $100 a head dinner did not disappoint, with a delicate marriage of subtle tastes in every mouthful.

Hervey Bay scallops, Noosa Spanner Crab ravioli, local zucchini flower and saffron risotto, ballotine of Rannoch Farm quail, tajima wagyu 6-score, aged Gympie goat’s cheese and new season mango tapioca trifle made for a memorable evening.

The staff even added “happy annerversary” around the edge of the wives’ dessert plates. Who cares if it was spelt wrong?

I was more upset about the tacky blonde who tried to “pick up” my husband as we left Noosa Surf Club later that night.

But that’s another story.

Day two in our little love nest was its saving grace; a combination of late breakfast and a long lunch, stylish bargains and a sun-drenched stroll along the boardwalk and the beach, ending in dinner at View.

The restaurant is making a name for itself with a seasonally changing fusion of Australian and Asian cuisine each night.

Over the next two hours, hubby and I feasted: prosciutto-wrapped scallops with baby spinach, sage butter and saffron risotto and a half-dozen steamed Coffin Bay oysters with ginger, soy and sesame as entrees, followed by two of the restaurant’s most popular mains in black Angus beef eye fillet with Mooloolaba king prawns, half-shell scallops with horseradish mashed potato and classical Diane sauce, and barramundi fillet with yabbies cooked in paperbark with a coriander and wild lime beurre marnier.

The tiramisu dessert we shared was served with mascarpone cheese and layered Italian sponge fingers soaked in coffee ... and was certifiably orgasmic.

We were so full and relaxed after dinner, we fell blissfully asleep the moment we hit the bed.

If that’s not romantic, I don’t know what is.


Outrigger Little Hastings Street Resort & Spa, Noosa.

Outrigger Little Hastings Street Resort & Spa offers 198 self-contained suites, villas and penthouses with rainforest and resort views. The resort also features a range of three and four-bedroom deluxe villas with sweeping views of Laguna Bay and exclusive access to the private Brookes Pool.

Facilities include: a resort pool and bar, day spa and lap pool, restaurant and bar, gym, steam room, games room, theatrette, private lookout, conference and wedding facilities for up to 500 guests cocktail-style.

Day entrance: 7am-7pm – enter via 33 Viewland Drive.

Evening entrance: 7pm-7am – enter via 5 Morwong Drive.

Phone (07) 5449 2277.

Stephanie’s Ocean Spa, Outrigger Little Hastings Street, Noosa

Phone 5473 5353


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