The New Resort In Australia Inspired by California in the 1970s

South of Australia’s Gold Coast, Byron Bay tempts with beautiful beaches, world-class surfing, and Sun Ranch, a laid-back coastal resort.

South of Australia’s Gold Coast, Byron Bay tempts with beautiful beaches, world-class surfing, and Sun Ranch, a laid-back coastal resort that opened last autumn. Architects from Balanced Earth handled the renovation of the 1980s ranch, while One Teaspoon founder Jamie Blakey and Julia Ashwood, focused on the design.

Designed to be off the grid, Sun Ranch is solar powered, has SkyBox battery storage, collects the rainwater used throughout the resort in a 350,000-litre tank, and added 10,000 native plants and trees to the ranch’s 55 acres.






The interiors feature an abundance of textures: wood, stone, linen, rattan, and recycled brick are paired with natural shades and warm earth tones such as cream, olive green, terra cotta, and chocolate brown.

In the Rambler Long House, communal spaces include The Lair, a sunken lounge with a striking fireplace, orange walls, and a tiger-print sofa; Whiskey Lounge, with an al fresco dining space; and the Cowboy Bar. The bedrooms, which have bursts of blue and burgundy, are equipped with a vintage sound system, minibar, outdoor shower, and direct access to the exclusive house pool.




The Sun Ranch Barns, named after ’70s pop songs, are two-bedroom off-the-grid spaces facing east. The wood-panelled barns include an open-plan kitchen, living room, daybed, fireplace, and laundry, plus an outdoor living space with a barbecue and direct access to the ranch’s walking tracks. There are curated piles of vinyl records throughout the property, musician biographies for bedtime reading, and Sun Ranch Spotify playlists with songs from The Rolling Stones, The Go-Go’s, and LCD Soundsystem.

All guests are greeted upon arrival with a cold beer or salty margarita, and every morning begins with a full ranch breakfast. The Field House is an outdoor dining space with an Argentinian barbecue and al fresco kitchen. Resident chef Pip Sumbak oversees breakfast, sunset snacks, and fire feasts, her ever-changing menu items sourced from the ranch gardens and local suppliers. Sumbak also offers cooking classes sharing first-hand knowledge of fishing, foraging, and cooking.






Other activities include the use of a 25-metre hillside swimming pool made from basalt sourced from the ranch’s grounds, surrounded by sleek wooden lounge chairs and seagrass umbrellas, an area for meditation, and a wood-fired floating sauna. Guests can also access e-bikes, daily yoga classes, and on-site horse riding, as well as cacao ceremonies, sound healing, and astrology.

It’s 20 minutes to the famous Byron Bay coast, but the numerous lures will keep most guests wandering the ranch.