Occupying the beachfront of Soldier’s Point in Port Stephens, Bannisters has opened the doors to its third luxury boutique hotel in NSW. Featuring 78 rooms; four luxury suites; a penthouse; fifty rooms with picture frame waters views and forest and bushland outlooks, the latest Bannisters has been designed to make the most of its position and the best views of Port Stephens and its landscape.
The lofty, double-height lobby opens onto a stunning infinity pool and bar. Bannisters Port Stephens has two distinct food offerings featuring the celebrated Rick Stein at Bannisters by Sarah and Rick Stein, which has been designed to transition seamlessly from light filled lunches enjoying the water views, to intimate and textured interiors in the evening. The Terrace Bar, best suited for casual dining includes steamed bao buns, fish tacos, haloumi salad, burgers, grilled barramundi, scotch fillet and Archie Rose gin and tonic cheesecake.
Bannisters general manager, Peter Bacon, says: “Bannisters by the Sea and its sister property Bannisters Pavilion, both in Mollymook on the NSW South Coast, have become favourite destinations for Sydneysiders, Canberrans and international visitors, many of whom are drawn to the barefoot luxury on offer and Rick Stein’s cuisine. It was a natural progression to expand to the Port Stephens area when the right site became available.
“The Soldiers Point location is exquisite and our creative team including architect Tony Freeman, interior designer Romy Alwill and landscape designer Will Dangar have made the most of the unimpeded water views. We are thrilled to welcome our first guests this spring.”
Rick has worked closely with head chef, Mitchell Turner, designing a menu featuring local king prawns, sand whiting, snapper and blue eye trevalla as well as fabulous Sydney rock oysters from local growers. The menu includes his signature Fruits de mer platter, oysters Charentaise, fish and shellfish soup with rouille, Madras curry of blue eye trevalla with tomato and tamarind, and his ever-popular fish pie.
Keeping local with produce, Sarah and Rick collaborated with Brokenwood Wines’ chief winemaker, Iain Riggs AM and created a very special wine for the restaurant. “When the sample arrived in London by post, we were blown away. There was a delicious acidity which reminded us both of citrus and apple, but with a minerality too, which really brings out the best in an oyster”, says Sarah.
A project of passion for Sarah, she has worked closely with interior designer, Romy Alwill on the design of the restaurant, ensuring it reflected the unique blend of Rick’s brand and his restaurants overseas, but also responded to the unique environment of Port Stephens and one that creates a fresh impression of the brand here in Australia. The spaces features earthy tones and textures of the earth and sea with terracotta, brass, and water coloured Japanese wallpaper, rich timber and punches of Rick’s signature blue (fresh from the Pacific of course!).