Thalia Haven: The story behind Australia's best bathtub

The story behind Australia’s best bath: Owner of stunning ‘haven’ in Tasmania reveals how she transformed her ‘weekender’ into a spectacular holiday home

  • Thalia Haven is set on a private 130-acre wooded peninsula just over one hour’s drive from Hobart Airport
  • There is an outdoor bath, shower and wood-fired sauna overlooking Great Oyster Bay in Tasmania
  • Owner Susan West has revealed how she transformed her ‘weekender’ into a top Australian holiday home 

Perched on a small deck looking out over the crystal blue waters of Great Oyster Bay in Tasmania lies what many agree is Australia’s best and most beautiful bathtub. 

But the stunning tub is just one stand-out feature of Thalia Haven, a ‘weekender’ turned holiday home set on a private 130-acre wooded peninsula just over one hour’s drive from Hobart Airport.  

The off-grid accommodation also features four ancient-stone bedrooms clustered around olive-tree courtyards, huge open fireplaces in the dining and living rooms, a professionally equipped kitchen and five kilometres of secluded coastline including your own exclusive golden-sand beach.

Perched on a small deck looking out over the crystal blue waters of Great Oyster Bay in Tasmania lies what many agree is Australia’s best and most beautiful bathtub

But the stunning tub is just one stand-out feature of Thalia Haven, a ‘weekender’ turned holiday home set on a private 130-acre wooded peninsula just over one hour’s drive from Hobart Airport

The off-grid accommodation also features four ancient-stone bedrooms clustered around olive-tree courtyards (pictured)

Owner Susan West said she and her husband originally built Thalia as a ‘weekender’ and eventually their long-term home, but five years ago they decided to lease it out as a short-term holiday house after ‘life took unexpected turns’.      

‘A husband-and-wife team of Hobart-based architects created the design and the detail reflects the quality of the craftsmanship available in Tasmania, as well as our own taste and treasured items from our travels,’ Mrs West told FEMAIL.  

‘Thalia reflects a number of things which are important to us and we love that the structure is made from local stone, and recycled wood. In fact, Thalia’s beams were once a heritage bridge, which has since been rebuilt exactly as it was, leaving us with the gorgeous weathered ironbark.

‘The building itself mirrors many of the places we have travelled to and loved. People often say it’s Mediterranean in feel, with separate pavilions clustered around courtyards. We love the design because it allows for privacy as well as for space for a group of visitors to be together.

‘We are also proud that Thalia is entirely off the grid: our power and water come entirely from Thalia’s sun, breezes, and rain.’

Thalia is miles from the nearest neighbour so guests also have the luxury of complete and total privacy. 

The kitchen offers a professional steam injection oven, gas cooktop, and a bench-height cooking fireplace as well as every pot and pan you would like to find in a kitchen

‘We are also proud that Thalia is entirely off the grid: our power and water come entirely from Thalia’s sun, breezes, and rain,’ Mrs West said 

‘An outdoor bath, shower and wood-fired sauna overlooking the Bay were a natural step to take – bathing at dawn is magnificent and bathing under the stars is unforgettable,’ Mrs West said.

Guests frequently comment on the detail that’s gone into the property to ensure it feels like a ‘home’ rather than a ‘holiday house’.   

‘Our kitchen offers a professional steam injection oven, gas cooktop, and a bench-height cooking fireplace as well as every pot and pan we would like to find in a kitchen,’ Mrs West said.

‘Our duvets are custom-made, our bedding is lovely Egyptian cotton and our amenities are hand-made by an award-winning Tasmanian maker of fine soaps. 

The duvets are custom-made, the bedding is lovely Egyptian cotton and the amenities are hand-made by an award-winning Tasmanian maker of fine soaps

Guests to Thalia are made up of Australians and international visitors who are looking for a unique, private, quiet, often romantic getaway

‘Our lap rugs are superfine Tasmanian merino wool, spun in Tasmania, and our picnic rugs are recycled from the offcuts from this mill.’ 

Family dogs are also welcome and they put out biscuits them along with a tag that says Thalia Haven Guest. 

Guests to Thalia are made up of Australians and international visitors who are looking for a unique, private, quiet, often romantic getaway. 

They can accommodate up to eight guests at a time in the four bedrooms (each with king bed). So upwards of 500 guests currently enjoy the Thalia experience each year

The design of the house also works well for larger family or friendship groups, where people can enjoy their own space as well as pile into the main house to be together

Guests can enjoy five kilometres of secluded coastline including their own exclusive golden-sand beach

Owner Susan West (pictured) said she and her husband originally built Thalia to be their ‘weekender’ and long-term home, but five years ago they decided to lease it out

‘We can accommodate up to eight guests at a time in our four bedrooms (each with king bed). So upwards of 500 guests currently enjoy the Thalia experience each year,’ Mrs West said.

‘Though of course when you book Thalia, you have the whole house to yourselves, no matter how many are in your group. We charge $900 per night for the first two guests, and $100 per person per night for each additional guest. 

‘And we have a two-night minimum stay; you won’t enjoy the experience we offer if you race in and race out again.’

The design of the house also works well for larger family or friendship groups, where people can enjoy their own space as well as pile into the main house to be together. 

‘Above all, over and over, we hear how wonderful it is to be off the grid, with no TV or WiFi, creating the space to relax and reconnect with loved ones – and we supply wood for the fireplace, board games, and a library of books to help create these experiences,’ Mrs West said.

‘And my favourite part? Personally, my favourite experience is waking up to the pink skies of dawn, in my comfy bed, with my husband close by, and enjoying a first cuppa as the day dawns, quiet and still, other than the rhythmic sound of the waves.’  

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