March 11, 2012
Doube dip ... Avoca Palms Resort is not short on swimming option.
It's no boys allowed when Sarah Whyte and her friends hit Avoca Beach.
WHEN I call Avoca Palms Resort to book myself and five twentysomething girlfriends in for a weekend away, I'm not sure I'll be able to find an apartment large enough for all of us plus our copious amounts of luggage.
I weave it into a conversation with the resort's site manager, Brett Rowe, that "a few" of my old school chums and I are keen to check out the quiet beach town.
"Oh, you mean a girls' weekend away?" he asks. Well, yes. "There is room for six in our apartments - we always have girls' groups up here."
And with that, our weekend away is already looking good.
Packing 10 pairs of cossies each and a few bottles of bubbly, the girls are giddy with anticipation as we head up on Friday night. An hour and a half later, we reach our destination. Brett is even more energetic in person than on the phone, warmly welcoming us to the resort, which is a five-minute walk from the beach, local shops and cafes.
The apartment is huge, with three bedrooms, two bathrooms and a large entertainment area that includes a fully equipped kitchen, two lounges, a dining table and a big TV. Outside, a sweeping balcony with an outdoor setting and barbecue overlooks Avoca beach and the headland. Heaven.
We've only been inside for two minutes before the beds are snatched (the queen bed and spa en suite obviously being the jewel in the crown), champagne corks are popped and music is playing as we gear up for a fun night.
At 10pm, I wander outside for a breather. We've been dancing, playing cards and telling embarrassing school stories for more than three hours and it's time for a break. Outside, however, all I can hear is women talking, laughing and singing.
I look inside and the girls are now glued to a new card game. Huh? I look upwards. There are four women singing on a balcony. Then I look to the right; there are five more women sitting around a table smoking and laughing.
It seems we're not the only ones having a girls' weekend.
And together, the three apartments party into the night, blissfully unaware of each other.
The following morning, we pull ourselves out of bed (I managed to score the queen) and make plans for the day. Breakfast, beach, lunch, beach, dinner.
There are many breakfast options in the quiet town. After much discussion on the type of coffee each cafe brews, the breakfasts they offer and the attractiveness of the barista, we settle on Sul Rondo on Avoca Drive.
The Toby Estate's coffee is OK, not great. But the meals all look and taste great, even though the eggs are a little cold. Note: if you're more into DIY meals, the local supermarket prices are so expensive, it's advisable to shop at the cheaper, larger supermarket in Gosford, 20 minutes away by car.
The beach, a one-minute walk from the cafe, is where we situate ourselves for most of the day, desperate for some rays and that sun-kissed look for Monday morning. As with any beach holiday, our day revolves around food and sun.
Brett has booked our dinner at Rojo Rocket. This is a restaurant not to miss. Before we even get there, we're impressed, having been picked up in a converted hearse that shines a creepy blue on its passengers - a free service offered by the venue.
Set on a hill, the Mexican restaurant sprawls across a colourful courtyard that includes a cabana, outside seating and a renovated house with seating inside. Owned by Ken West, one of the organisers of the Big Day Out, Rojo Rocket oozes character and colour.
We order a smorgasbord of Mexican delights accompanied by white and rose sangria and Coronas.
By 11pm, the restaurant has turned into a party while people drink and dance out the back as the DJ spins the best music.
It's even harder to get up on our final morning as we prepare to leave our beach haven. It's decided that we'll put off heading home and drive to Terrigal for breakfast, 20 minutes away.
The writer was a guest of Destinations NSW and Avoca Palms Resort.
Avoca Palms Resort, 194 Avoca Drive, Avoca Beach.
About 1½ hours from Sydney. Take the F3 Freeway off the Pacific Highway, take the Gosford/Woy Woy exit and follow Avoca Drive for about 20 minutes.
The three-bedroom apartment is $220 a night with a minimum stay of two nights.
Beach basic and spacious.
A girls getaway.
Your cossie, a few bottles of bubbly and to book a table at Rojo Rocket Mexican restaurant, rojorocket.com.au.
The stained carpet looked like it was ready to be replaced.
The iPod dock meant we were never short of pumping tunes.
Take the kids
Definitely. The apartment is big enough for kids to run around in and the pool and games room will also appeal though you might have to share the water with chatting girls.