Olivia Newton-John passes the Byron Retreat ‘Gaia’ baton to Andrew Forrest

Olivia Newton-John passes the Byron Retreat ‘Gaia’ baton to Andrew Forrest

Olivia Newton-John has sold her luxury Byron Bay lifestyle retreat.  The Forrest family-owned Tattarang, one of Australia’s largest private investment groups, added the Gaia Retreat & Spa to its diverse portfolio that includes iconic Australian brand, R.M. Williams.

Andrew, best known by his nickname Twiggy, is a mining and cattle tycoon who owns the R.M. Williams brand.

‘As custodians of truly unique Australian experiences, we understand and deeply respect the founding vision of Gaia, which has transformed a wellness philosophy into one of Australia’s most celebrated destinations,’ Nicole said in a statement.

‘We are investing in and developing unique and meaningful places – places that can enhance the health and wellbeing of individuals and communities.’

The Forrests are known for their philanthropy, having donated large portions of their fortune to charity.

Back in April, Olivia announced she was selling her famed Gaia retreat in Byron Bay just months after it swept the World Luxury Hotel Awards.

The entertainer said at the time she was ready to ‘pass the baton to new owners.

Ms Newton-John said she and co-owners Gregg Cave, Ruth Kalnin and Warwick Evans were excited to have sold to Tattarang.

“After 16 years, we are excited to pass the baton to new visionaries to nurture and grow this majestic hinterland oasis – a place which has been so deeply embraced as a ‘home away from home’  for so many on their wellness and healing journey,” Ms Newton-John said.

The British-born Australian singer, actor and entrepreneur said Gaia and Tattarang shared the same values.

“Both Gaia and Tattarang are built upon the incredible diversity of this land; a commitment to share with our guests those unique and extraordinary experiences that make our country so special,” Ms Newton-John said in a video message.

“We are so very thrilled to see how this fresh, exciting and innovative group will carry on our legacy.

“It has been our very great privilege to share our slice of paradise.”

As reported in the AFR, Gaia was started in 2005 by co-owners Newton-John, Gregg Cave, Ruth Kalnin and Warwick Evans.

The famous retreat won numerous awards including “Global Winner – Luxury Wellness Healing Retreat” and “Continent Winner – Luxury Spa Retreat” at the World Luxury Spa Awards 2021.

With 22 guest suites, a day spa, restaurant, lounge, salted heated swimming pool, and sauna, it also offers recreational facilities including a naturopathic consulting room, a day spa with 10 treatment rooms, a yoga studio, fitness centre, tennis court, walking tracks and fire pit.

The article also reported that the Byron Shire has been home to those looking for a low-key lifestyle. It has become popular with backpackers over the past 20 years. Today, the coastal town with Cape Byron’s famous lighthouse is synonymous with the rich and famous. Chris Hemsworth, Zac Efron and Matt Damon own property, and Netflix have made a reality series about Byron’s social media influencers.

House prices in Byron surged nearly 40 per cent in 2020 and now rival Sydney. Sources close to both companies said Gaia was a highly profitable business over a long period and is fully booked for the coming season.

Tattarang chief investment officer John Hartman said the company was investing through its lifestyle division in brands, products and experiences that share the best of Australia.

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