Building the Koonyum Dream.
As your hosts (Piari and Michael) we would like to share the Koonyum Range Retreat story with you. Please remember we are here to assist you during your stay so please do not hesitate to contact us should you have any requests, it would be our pleasure.
We are so proud of our magical paradise - we knew it would be our home from the moment we set eyes on it12 years ago. Miki had been travelling abroad for years and upon returning to Australia with my husband to be Michael (Miki) set about finding a place to settle down and build our future.
After spending many years in the glorious and humble land of India together and living with the locals between the coastline and the Himalaya Mountains, we knew as soon as we found Koonyum that it was perfect.
From the peace that you feel when you are driving up the winding road lined with century old trees, to the exhilaration you experience when standing on the precipice and taking in the view, the vacant land filled our heads and hearts with visions of what you now see today.
It wasn’t an easy journey, but then again, anything worthwhile isn’t. And what a journey it has been.
Having been penniless travellers, our visions were grand, but we knew it would take time to achieve our goals.
Our first steps were to haul a caravan to the top of Koonyum for us to live in and we started building our ‘first’ home (which is now the third chalet) almost immediately.
Miki and I worked and saved and worked and saved, and every dollar that was made went into our creation.
Miki wanted to pour as much of himself into the property as he could and worked very closely with the builder, determined to learn as much as he could along the way . Once completed, we again continued our work to be able to start on the next Chalet - now called The Edge. Miki learned along the way and became the builder for the remainder of the construction.
Everything about The Edge was inspired by the land and the stars and we designed the chalet to maximise the landscapes. Every room was thoughtfully planned and revised and rethought to make sure we got it just right.
We would lie and gaze upon the stars at night and thought it would be a lovely touch to have a bedroom that allowed you to do just that. I pieced together the mosaic spa over nine months ensuring every tile was laid perfectly - a skill that was shared by a dear friend and local.
We knew we wanted the warmth of timber and everywhere you look to be able to soak in the view. Even the balcony allows a peaceful resting place to just be and tune in to mother earth.
Once The Edge was completed we started to promote its availability and with the bookings we had for that we could now start building the Lotus Room. It was around now that I also started to work in a restaurant that I would later buy and run - and yes, my love of good food was born! An addiction that I now proudly shared with our gourmet-appreciating guests to have them enjoy the local produce and cuisine - there is a lot of talent right here in Byron Bay - enjoy!
After the Lotus Room was completed and our two sons had arrived into the world, we went about building our dream home.... again, we were very hands-on and involved in every aspect with the architect, and believe we have created something truly special. Some finishing’s were sourced from our various trips back to India and each time we travel we come home with more inspiration that gets poured into our part of the world here at Koonyum.
The home now encapsulates everything we love in life, from the warmth of the fire, and the openness of the heart of the house flowing through to the large balcony and the seamlessness of the horizon-edged pool, to the charm of the gazebo and the luxury of the kitchen and bathrooms; every square inch means something to us.
We hope you have enjoyed our journey and you do enjoy your stay at Koonyum Range Retreat.
Your hosts - Piari and Michael