Local Luxury Hotel in Elite Company

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The Lounge at CIRCA 1936, Corowa.

Corowa’s CIRCA 1936 is a finalist in the 2017 NSW Tourism Awards for Luxury Accommodation, proving that regional Australia can more than match it with city style offerings.

Border Cafe was treated to a tour of the beautiful, luxurious property which is not only unique, but truly world class – so it comes as no surprise it’s been recognised by tourism industry leaders.

Housed within the historic art deco surroundings of the former Rural Bank of NSW, CIRCA 1936 is truly special.

The stunning architectural features of the heritage building, including stunning pressed metal ceilings and art deco features, set the tone for what must be an unforgettable experience for guests.

CIRCA 1936, which opened two years ago, is the culmination of more than 40 years of hotel experience for founder Kevin Yaxley and his wife Ririn.

“Everybody who comes here goes ‘wow’ – the guests love it,” Kevin said.

“We have amazing service and we know we have a great product.

“It’s challenging to have a luxury product in such a small town that has an image that’s not Beechworth or Daylesford, but given time we can help reinvent a market.”

CIRCA 1936 is one of only three finalists in the Luxury Accommodation category for the NSW Tourism Awards. The others are based in the Blue Mountains and Sydney.

Kevin and Ririn’s vision is to prove the luxury small style hotel and day spa concept can succeed in regional Australia.

“We are trying to prove a business concept,” Kevin said.

“We haven’t moved here to live the rest of our lives in Corowa. We have a CIRCA in Wagga – a day spa and lounge that’s doing incredibly well, so having a second CIRCA is good for the brand, because we’re looking to build a brand, rather than just a small hotel in Corowa.”

No doubt the NSW Tourism Awards judges are impressed by a host of luxury features offered at the hotel and day spa.

“A lot of hotels aspire to world class luxury, but fall short. It’s not just about the rooms, it’s the service,” Kevin said.

“We pour a bath for guests, we shine their shoes, we press their clothes – we dote over them.

“We greet our guests in the car park and carry their luggage before they’ve even turned off the ignition. They sit in our lounge with a complimentary tea, coffee, wine, whisky – whatever it may be – a hot towel, with their luggage already in their room. It’s all done, before they even think about it.

“You don’t get service like that anywhere, and we’ve stayed in the best hotels in the world. This is what upmarket and luxury is, and that’s why people are blown away by what we do here,” he said.

The owners have also hinted at the opening of another CIRCA property in the border region soon.

The NSW Tourism Awards will be held in Sydney on Thursday 16 November, with winners going on to represent the state at the Australian Tourism Awards in February 2018.