On a tranquil street in the wooded suburb of Dickson, One of a Kind Apartments was to be our weekend getaway spot. Located a mere ten-minute drive from the Canberra city centre, these apartments are a perfect choice for staycations and short-term accommodations. We recount our two-night staycation experience through this narrative…
It was a typical winter evening in Canberra with a nippy breeze dancing across our skin as dusk set in. Except for the babel of excited birds returning home, the tree-lined street was peacefully quiet – quite the opposite from the rush-hour traffic on Northbourne Avenue we were just on. We punched in the numbers to open the underground parking area and heard the shutter spring to life.
Collecting our bags we walked up a short flight of stairs through a passcode protected secure door that opened into the corridor where our apartment was located. The corridor had a quirky twist with tools embedded in the terrazzo flooring while the walls were adorned with steel and wooden artwork that brought a bespoke feel to the place. Hard to miss, was a large bowl of oranges that guests could help themselves too.
Every apartment has a name and ours was called Shanghai. As soon as we opened the door of the apartment, the bright red tones used generously across the apartment gripped our exhausted winter drenched emotions and shook them dry. In less than a minute we were transformed into energetic and invigorated beings. The apartment was welcoming and cheerful. It had a bubbly character about it. It seemed to say, “Come on in fellas and make yourselves comfortable”.
After soaking in the vivacity of the living room for a few minutes, we decided to explore the rest of the apartment. It was hard to miss the thoughtful gestures we kept discovering as we wandered around.
To begin with, there is food in the kitchen! Adequate quantities of rice, pasta and oats (about 500gm each), a small bottle of olive oil, tea and coffee, salt and pepper, some condiments, a packet of milk and sugar. As staycation guests, we had a welcome basket of goodies that included bread, butter, chocolates, fruits, farm fresh eggs, tea leaves, wine (we opted for juice) and a handwritten welcome note from the owner. This was enough to get us started before we needed to go shopping for groceries like meat and cheese.
On the center table in the living room there were a set of brochures containing the latest information on Canberra’s places of interest. We made ourselves a cup of coffee and browsed through those leaflets. They were all up-to-date and as travel enthusiasts we found some new places in and around Canberra worth visiting.
Next we tested the complimentary Wi-Fi. The signals were strong enough to stream online videos and just in case it’s not enough, we could use a Telstra Dongle that was made available to us.
The bathroom had Sukin toiletries. For those who don’t know, Sukin is an Australian company that is renowned for manufacturing environmentally conscious, natural personal care products. Then something else struck us… everything in the apartment including the food and the toiletries are organic and eco-centric.
The kitchen was fully-equipped with an electric cooktop, oven, microwave, dishwasher, fridge, toaster, kettle, pots and pans, cutlery, detergent, kitchen towels and tissue. The kitchen opened up into the living and dining that had a two-seater sofa-bed, flat screen TV and a dining table that could comfortably seat three people.
Another unique aspect of the property is a purposeful greenhouse where guests can help themselves to herbs and vegetables at no cost. We plucked a few red peppers for dinner that night, headed off to Supabarn to stock the fridge up and cooked dinner for three. Yup, One of a Kind Apartments is great that way, you can have guests over. After hours of chit-chat, we said our goodbyes and snuck into our comfortable bed and had eco-friendly dreams.
A chorus of a thousand birds pleasantly woke us up the next morning. They seemed to be animatedly discussing their weekend plans. We lay in our bed listening to them but by the time we got out of bed, they disappeared and the street was quiet again, except for the sound of an occasional car passing by. It was a bright sunny day. After having a hearty breakfast, we walked around the neighborhood.
Dickson is a lovely suburb and it is famous for its shops and restaurants. A ten-minute walk from the apartment took us the Dickson shops. Not too far away is a bus stop too making it an easy commute to the city. An eight minute drive away is the Capital Region Farmers Market that’s open every Saturday from 7.30 to 11.30am.
We spent the weekend simply lazing around the apartment, having long coffee sessions in the courtyard, listening to the birds and having a couple of friends come by to sample the food we cooked and baked.
We thank One of a Kind Apartments for inviting Travel and Beyond to an exclusive hosted stay. All opinions are our own.