Barn Hives Eco Pods - Romantic Accommodation Credit Taya Reid

Egis Rusilas has a favourite analogy when explaining why honeymooners might choose the Barn Hives for their Margaret River Region post-wedding retreat.

The owner grins as he points out that the six eco pods that make up Barnyard 1978’s accommodation offering mimic the real beehives that dot the property in that the “honey” is made on the top level. The generous, airy loft bedroom on the first floor of each pod feels modern, minimal, but still luxurious and special.

While not strictly true, the name Yallingup has come to be known as the place of love in the region. The little corner between Dunsborough and Margaret River is filled with dreamy beaches, postcard walks, a marriage of art and wine, and the limestone caves for which it is actually named. It’s long been a honeymoon destination for these reasons, and Egis is seeing that echoed in the bookings Barn Hives is receiving, with at least thirty percent of his visiting bees being newlyweds.

The exterior of the Barn Hives. Photo credit Taya Reid.
The exterior of the Barn Hives. Photo credit Taya Reid.

The pods are thoughtfully curated, employing the habits of Yallingup light and cross-ventilation to ensure a high level of comfort with minimal intervention. Rainwater, solar panels and a personal pellet heater mean your stay is cosy, comfortable and carbon-guilt free. Each pod has a sun deck, an ideal spot for an intimate sundowner, maybe a golden cocktail mixed with the raw Barnyard honey that awaits guests on arrival. Other honeymoon hives are visible, but there’s a sense of privacy in the design and plenty of care has been taken to ensure residents have enough breathing space to enjoy the peace for two.

Barn Hives Kitchen Photo Credit Taya Reid
Well-equipped kitchenettes provide all you need to whip up a romantic meal. Photo credit Taya Reid.

For foodies, Barnyard is a double-pronged delight. Huge fresh eggs, homemade pasta and of course, the pure, unprocessed honey, are all sustainably packaged for romantic chefs to take back to their accommodation and put the Everdure by Heston barbecue or industrial look kitchenette to use. If that feels too much like hard work, the restaurant is buzzing for lunch and dinner daily. Couples can stroll just a few metres past the chooks to soak up local art on the lawn with everything taken care of by culinary professionals. Whichever option you select, you can wash it down with a Barnyard wine, the chardonnay is a standout for sunshine sipping.

Restaurant patrons enjoy views of the vines on one side and prime beehive watching on the other. The bistro interior echoes the minimal feel of the pods, without being cold or harsh. Barnyard’s menu is delicate and contemporary, but not fussy, and alive with the colours of the region’s seasonal produce. Empanadas are light and crisp with an earthy salsa and the handmade pasta is singing in its pan juices, the right kind of oily, clean and fresh with tomatoes zinging and peas young and juicy.

Barnyard 1978 Pasta Photo Credit Taya Reid
The on-site restaurant Barnyard 1978 serves a thoughtful menu using local seasonal produce. Photo credit Taya Reid.

The real bees are kept busy during wildflower season, and of course are treated to a range of local flowers including honey-fan favourites Jarrah, Karri and Marri. Beekeepers migrate honeybees seasonally for a wide range of blooms, from the nearby coastal wildflowers all the way to eucalyptus on the Darling Scarp. Egis says, “The property is enhanced to promote health and food supply for honeybees and other native pollinators. We’ve established a variety of flowering plants at Barnyard to provide nectar required to nourish our bees.” The always limited-edition honey is available for free tasting at the restaurant farm shop.

For loved-up explorers, there’s a wealth of activity in proximity of your hive. It’s only a short drive to the breathtaking rock formations and moody waves of Wyadup Bay, Injidup Natural Spa and Canal Rocks. You can exercise your caving skills at the nearby Ngigli Cave, where the tour is likely to include some tales of romantic escapades by candlelight. Once you’ve exhausted everything on the Barnyard menu, there are plenty of wineries, breweries and restaurants in reach. It’s easy to find a stretch of pristine beach of your own, or you can head a little further south and pick up a piece of the Cape-to-Cape trail for one of those long walks that lovers take.

Barnyard 1978 Honey Photo Credit Taya Reid
Sample honey made by the hard-working bees. Photo credit Taya Reid.

Whether it’s your first, third or fortieth honeymoon, Barnyard 1978 and the Barn Hives offer a sustainably minded spot for the perfect balance of nature at your feet, delicious local food and modern amenities. You can while away the hours with a glass of cab sauv and a book or take advantage of being in the centre of some of the region’s best attractions. Egis and his partner Raminta are engaging hosts, giving a personal warm welcome vibe to the property, and their love and attention to the Barnyard experience won’t be wasted if you enjoy little details.

For instance, if you happen to be assigned the one retreat that doesn’t quite look like the others, it’s nothing to fear, you’re just staying in the Queen Bee.