Romance and indulgence
A couple’s country escape in Ipswich
My partner and I have been keen to book an escape to the country for a little while now. We’re based on the Gold Coast and wanted to venture a bit further afield than the Hinterland. I’d spotted an Instagram picture of the gorgeous Gypsy Cottage in Rosewood a few months back and had been obsessed ever since. I knew it’d be the perfect choice for our winter weekend getaway.
Getting local produce in Ipswich
John and I first drove out to Ivory’s Rock, which is about 20 minutes from the Ipswich CBD. It was a Saturday morning and I wanted to stop by the Peak Organic Markets for a couple of snacks and some organic gardening inspiration. We stocked up on berries, bananas and sweet potatoes before dropping by Ironbark Ridge Vineyard at Purga. It’s become a bit of a tradition to stop there for a bottle (or three) of Shiraz whenever we’re in Ipswich and I thought it’d be nice to have something for later on that evening.
Checking in at your country escape
We arrived at Gypsy Cottage mid-morning and it was everything I had imagined. The cottage is perched on a hill at The Bluff and boasts 360-degree views of the Border Ranges and Great Dividing Range. It’s located only five minutes from the Rosewood township but feels a million miles away from anything else. The cottage is fully-equipped with a kitchen, laundry, four-poster bed, claw-foot bath, wood fireplace and beautiful front porch – certainly conducive to a romantic atmosphere. We relaxed on the porch with a breakfast hamper provided by our host and spent a couple of hours soaking up the crisp, country air.
Saturday lunch at Spicers
In an effort to keep up those peaceful vibes, we took a 15 minute drive and enjoyed a long lunch at Homage restaurant, Spicers Hidden Vale. If you’re into rolling hills and luxury retreats (who isn’t?!), you must visit Spicers at Grandchester. For those whose budget doesn’t allow a full weekend of pampering at this incredible estate, Homage is fantastic for a feast. Homage is set in the historic Spicers homestead and overlooks the 12,000-acre working farm. The restaurant uses produces from its onsite market garden and offers tables indoors or out on the veranda with views of the Scenic Rim.
After filling our bellies at Spicers and taking a wander around the property, John and I were both happy to arrive back at our charming new home. We set ourselves up out the front with deck chairs, glasses of Ironbark Ridge Shiraz, fresh fruit and cheese and watched the sun set over the countryside. It was heaven. Later that night we made ourselves a bite to eat and enjoyed another bottle of wine (complimentary from the cottage!) in front of the fireplace.
Doing your Sunday right
We checked out of Gypsy Cottage on Sunday morning and drove into central Ipswich for a late breakky at Nourish Real Food Cafe. This is a great place for the health conscious as it’s run by a qualified naturopath. There is an extensive range of meals and cabinet treats that cater to all dietary requirements and restrictions. I couldn’t go past the raw salted caramel slice, while John opted for the Choc Nutty Acai Bowl. We actually ended up buying a second one because I kept helping myself to John’s. It was too good!
Unwilling to let our weekend in Ipswich come to an end, we drove out to Kholo Gardens for a bit of last minute romantic solitude. I have visited a few times now and love the park’s tranquillity. John and I went for a walk through Tree Fern Lane and settled for a while next to the lily pond. It was a really lovely way to cap off our relaxing and romantic weekend in Ipswich.