Since it opened in 2007, Qualia has rocked the Australian hotel scene, offering unparallelled luxury in a spectacular setting. On the tip of Hamilton Island, one of the largest of the Whitsundays, Qualia is a series of elegant pavilions crafted out of timber, limestone and slate, with expansive views across the Coral Sea. The rooms are a dream: oversized egg-shaped baths for two; and football-stadium-sized beds with uninterrupted views of the water. There's everything you need here, from the state-of-the-art spa to the in-house restaurants. However, should you feel the need to leave paradise, one of Qualia's golf buggies will get you round the island in no time. Wow factor: Lie back on your private outdoor deck and watch for turtles - and, if you're lucky, dolphins - in the water. Flight time: 25 hours 25 minutes via Singapore and Brisbane.