Silky Oaks Lodge offers guests a stylish escape in the cool calm of the Daintree Rainforest. Set above the gently flowing Mossman River and among the leafy canopy, the airy, open spaces of the main lodge envelope guests in the sights and sounds of an extraordinary natural theatre.
A stay with Baillie Lodges is to experience the luxury of travel. Each Baillie property is located in an extraordinary natural location, with a personal connection to its culture and history, its art and natural heritage and local food and wine sourced from regional producers. Together, the luxury lodges are timeless in design, with myriad thoughtful details combining to create a genuinely warm welcome and a generosity of spirit.
The new-look main lodge is open to the sights and sounds of the rainforest. A reimagined reception area flows to an expansive lounge, contemporary bar and the Jungle Perch lounging area which extends into the forest canopy. Nearby, the private Kubirri Lounge offers a flexible air-conditioned space for quiet reading, private dining and meetings.
Opening out onto the treetops, the tiered Treehouse Restaurant sets the scene for relaxed fine dining against the heady backdrop of the rainforest and the silky soundtrack of the river mixed with a chorus of birdsong. A generous banquette and comfortable dining spaces offer optimum views to the theatre of river and rainforest playing out beyond.
The meandering rock-bordered swimming pool is fringed by lush gardens – it’s the perfect spot to claim a daybed, bring a book and cue the cocktails for some poolside R&R. Wander around the new Kitchen Garden where the kitchen team cultivates tropical ingredients for the restaurant – ideally with a sundowner in hand.
Silky Oaks Lodge was first opened in 1985 when hoteliers Moss and Theresa Hunt bought the 80-hectare block. Under the stewardship of P&O Resorts, it rose to set the benchmark for luxury in the Daintree Rainforest. Since taking the reins in 2019, Baillie Lodges has reinvented an icon with a multimillion dollar transformation led by Port Douglas-based architect Gary Hunt.
Silky Oaks Lodge joined the Baillie Lodges collection in 2019, the first property acquired under a new joint venture between Baillie Lodges and KSL Capital Partners. The lodge complements Capella Lodge, Longitude 131°, The Louise and Southern Ocean Lodge in a premium experience of Australia’s most extraordinary destinations and Huka Lodge and Clayoquot Wilderness Lodge in international waters.
Tucked away between the ancient rainforest and the iconic sugarcane fields of Tropical North Queensland the recently renovated lodge blends the classic Queensland vernacular with a cool and contemporary vibe. Custom furnishings, commissioned artworks and warm local timbers offer a unique sense of the region.
Luxury of Oz
Luxury Lodges of Australia is a collection of independent luxury lodges and camps offering unforgettable experiences in Australia’s most extraordinary locations. There are 19 lodges in this stellar collection of the nation’s most celebrated properties. Silky Oaks Lodge is a member of the collection alongside Baillie Lodges sister properties Capella Lodge, Longitude 131°, The Louise and Southern Ocean Lodge.
Our connection to culture
Baillie Lodges actively seeks engagement with the communities in which each lodge is located ranging from establishing supplier relationships with food and beverage producers to supporting local artists, school education initiatives, community events and work experience programs.
The First Nations Kuku Yalanji people’s ancient culture is centred around a deep respect for nature and an intimate knowledge of its cycles. An Indigenous guided tour through Mossman Gorge is a must-do to discover first-hand the invaluable knowledge of Country and culture passed down through generations.
The textured works of local Aboriginal artists add a real sense of place to a stay at Silky Oaks Lodge. Guests will see an installation of 45 ceramic tiles created by artists from Yalanji Arts Centre as they arrive at the main lodge while handmade pots and vessels by Cairns-based artist Shireen Talibudeen are seen in the Kurribi Lounge.
A bountiful Kitchen Garden has been created on the site of a former tennis court where Executive Chef Mark Godbeer and his team cultivate local and Indigenous ingredients for use in the lodge’s daily changing menus. It’s perfect for a peaceful wander-through and for home gardening inspiration!
Walkabout Cultural Adventures offers half and full day tours of the Daintree Rainforest and Mossman Gorge. Owner Juan Walker together with his team offers unique experiences within Kuku Yalanji Country, sharing an introduction to their culture and connection to the land.
Sonya Boaden has been at the helm of Silky Oaks Lodge since 2019, skilfully navigating the property through its renovation journey before greeting first guests when the new-look lodge opened in 2021. Sonya has more than 25 years’ tourism experience, working with organisations including Accor, P&O Australian Resorts and Quest Hotel Apartments as well as managing her own franchise hotel in Victoria.
Assistant Managers Staci Godbeer and Sahil Pritmani have both spent time at sister properties – Staci in the outback at Longitude 131° and Sahil at Southern Ocean Lodge on Kangaroo Island. Together they offer Sonya invaluable support in delivering an unforgettable experience of the world’s oldest living rainforest to Silky Oaks Lodge guests.
Executive Chef Mark Godbeer has manned the kitchen at Silky Oaks Lodge since 2019. Prior to that, Mark led the culinary team at sister lodge Longitude 131° with a view to Uluru in the Australian outback. In his new home, Mark is fortunate to work with Tropical North Queensland’s rich bounty of local and regional produce to create his contemporary menus, with fresh-picked ingredients from the onsite kitchen garden making a very short journey from plant to plate!
Our commitment to the environment
The Baillie Lodges environmental commitment is best expressed by each lodge’s interaction with its local natural and cultural surroundings. How we support travelling for good.
Essential to the Baillie Lodges vision are initiatives designed to preserve the Daintree region’s pristine waters and broader rainforest environment, to maximise recycling and eliminate single use plastics and to conserve energy via smart technologies including LED lights and water-conserving bathroom fittings.
Silky Oaks Lodge is located in precious country. Around 3,000 plant species from over 210 broader families are found within the Daintree Rainforest and extended Wet Tropics region. The diverse range of plants includes primitive cycads, ferns and mosses and forms a natural archive of evolution in Australia.
Thriving among the lush vegetation around Silky Oaks Lodge are some of Australia’s rarest wildlife species. One third of Australia’s 315 mammal species call the Daintree Rainforest home. Thirteen of these species cannot be found anywhere else in the world, including unique green possums, rare bats, tree kangaroos and the Boyd Forest Dragon.
Silky Oaks Lodge takes a holistic approach to managing its impact on the natural environment. The use of organic and free-range produce in the kitchen complements mutually beneficial supplier partnerships with carefully chosen local food and drink producers who in turn embrace environmentally sustainable practices.
James and Hayley Baillie have an enviable track record of creating sensitive-but-sensational resorts in unrivalled locations… and now the Baillie Lodges duo have waved their multi-million-dollar magic wand over this 37-year-old retreat in a laid-back corner of Far North Queensland.Kirsten Galliot Qantas Travel Insider
Gazing up at the night sky through silhouetted palm leaves, listening to the frogs tinkle and the night birds hoot, I vow that having been so well nourished by Mother Nature while at Silky, I’ll do an even better job of looking after her in return as soon as I get back home.Nina Karnikowski Financial Review
There is no question of being impervious to the environment here. The lodge borders The Daintree National Park, home to 74 species of mammals, twice as many types of reptiles and amphibians, and 330 kinds of birds... It's a companionable destination of appropriate luxury and lots of creature comforts…Susan Kurosawa The Australian
At 37-year-old Silky Oaks, Baillie Lodges has brought the property smartly up to date with zero loss of soul. The lodge fans out by the Mossman River, tumbling over granite outcroppings and pools below in a series of deliciously swimmable billabongs.Maria Shollenbarger Financial Times
press & awards
Taste of the tropics
The open-air restaurant and bar welcome in the peaceful sights and sounds of the rainforest, creating an extraordinary backdrop for relaxed fine dining. Menus are contemporary Australian in style with Asian influences, designed to be refreshing and light.Whet your appetite
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