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Secrets On The Lake

Hideaway in the hills…

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While the rest of the world was kept at bay through lockdowns and shutdowns, quietly and with our trademark creative finesse, we have built yet another secret to wow the guests visiting Secrets on the Lake here in the lush Sunshine Coast Hinterland.

We would like to introduce The Hideaway… a truly unique space, perched high in the treetops, and with a view to die for!

Perfect for celebrations from birthdays to tiny weddings, parties to meetings, bridal and baby showers to ultimate High Teas and 3 course lunches. The Hideaway is a private haven for small groups from 8 to around 20.

George and Rob put their heads and imaginations together and built The Hideaway with the perfect balance of old and new… featuring stunning recycled materials like pressed metal panelling, beautiful old sanded and polished pine flooring, quaint antique fireplace, and display cabinet of fine china. This special cosy feel is enhanced by Ralf Driessen’s magnificent wrought iron art features, and beautiful hand carved cedar.

One can book to privately dine in The Hideaway with special friends, and feel completely unaware of the world outside, in awe of the eagle’s nest lakeside view from your perch high in the pristine rainforest.

Looking for something different? Then give our restaurant manager Brooke, or our wedding coordinators Sarah and Molly a call to find out more. They can help you design your special event or celebration to be held in the most amazing space…. The Hideaway here at Secrets on the Lake.

To book or find our more please call 0754 785 888, visit, or email

Catching up with friends…

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It always feels great to catch up with an old friend!

Years ago, 25 years in fact, George and I were first decorating our very new treehouses and we were in a bit of a fix about what to do about the bedside lamps. We had beautiful delicately carved red cedar beds and side tables, and the option of any standard run of the mill lighting just wasn’t going to cut it.

In walks Marc Khalifa, a terrific local glass blower who we had previously asked to make the oil lamps to fit into Ralf Driessen’s specially designed blacksmithed brackets of circles and swirls framing the cedar surround of the sunken spas. So, we asked Marc to make the wonderful blown glass lampshades for the bedsides, with special fittings that allow us to dismantle them to clean and replace the bulbs, when needed. It was a brilliant idea!

We still have all those lamps. All of which were done in stunning colours to match each of our luxury treehouse cabin themes. I can still tell the story as if it was yesterday… with a smile on my face.

Well yesterday, after many years… Marc arrived with some examples of his latest creations and we convinced him to let us feature it in a grand display at Secrets Art Gallery. The magnificent glass works reflect beautifully displayed on our glass shelves. They have certainly created a great deal of interest, and many of our treehouse guests and Dining on the Deck visitors are grabbing a wonderful memento of their stay to take home.

One particular set of three vases was called the Midnight Series. This he tells me, was represented at an exhibition at Uluru. These along with others such as the Earth Series, Morning and Earth and Sky are really quite magical.

It has certainly been a while since George and I had caught up with Marc and we were delighted to see him now as all those 25 years ago. In fact, catching up with so many great people is one of the big reasons we love Secrets on the Lake. Whether talking to new people or to those who have been coming for 20 years and more…

Counting our blessings…

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As December waltzes by drawing to close the most extraordinary year of my lifetime, I find myself relaxing in the reception on my favourite chair reflecting on lessons learned, counting our many blessings, and feeling very grateful to everyone who has supported us and our business.

For all the uncertainties and rule changes, ups and downs, closure’s and different levels of reopening… here we are rolling out our mouth -watering Christmas menu to our Dining on the Deck restaurant packed full of hungry, happy patrons!

As 2021 looms our new normal in hospitality is the Covid Safe Plan. For Secrets this means filling out the form and sanitizing hands and distancing when entering our reception, using our facilities, or dining in the restaurant. This sometimes offends but we have no choice. On the upside, I don’t think a single staff member has caught a cold or flu this year… so despite the inconvenience, following this regulation is making us all healthier.

I am a bit of a worrywart. What if this happens? Or that? What will I do if I can’t do this? You get the drift! My father gave me some great advice once when he could see my little head turning inside out over an issue that seemed so significant at the time but I can’t for the life of me remember what it was now! He said you only worry once ‘it’ actually does happen… worrying beforehand is a waste of time. It may never happen.

So, I gave worrying the boot (mostly!) and try to focus on the good stuff. And there is much to be grateful for despite the roller coaster 2020 has taken us all on. There are always at least two ways of looking at things! Here’s what this year has taught me…

  • Concentrate on the things that are in your control… such as clean your space, eat healthy food, be fit, enjoy life in the moment and feed your mind
  • There are some things you just can’t control… but what matters most is how you deal with the changes they effect. Do you live in fear and worry? Or do you adopt a little c’est la vie attitude and roll with it to make lemonade from those lemons?
  • Make hay while the sun shines… and when it gets a bit gloomy then prepare your hay for when the sun inevitably shows itself again… because nothing lasts forever!
  • It’s all about perspective… when you get a little overwhelmed or things seem to be piling on top of you then often the best medicine is a change of scene. Focus on all that is good and if you are able to… change your scene for a moment. The answers and strength will come.

Secrets on the Lake is the perfect change of scene if you are looking for some perspective! George and I built this truly special place for couples to lose themselves in the magic and beauty of nature. There is no better place to reconnect with one another in a relaxed and stunning lakeside location surrounded by pristine rainforest.

Secrets has a special energy that feeds the soul. Every day I see how it transforms the stressed tired faces of guests as they check in, to the glowing ‘10 years younger’ faces as they reluctantly hand in their key and head home. And for that I am truly grateful, because in our own small way George and I try to make a difference in each of the lives of our treehouse guests, wedding guests, and Dining on the Deck Patrons. We would love to welcome you through our doors soon!

For more information or to make a booking please don’t hesitate to get in touch by calling 07 54 785 888, emailing at, or visiting online at

Here comes the sun…

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Its officially Spring this week! And any of the many visitors soaking up these glorious hinterland days can tell you just how special that is in our own little slice of God’s country… Secrets on the Lake! So, say goodbye to the chilly mornings and winter blues… and put your best foot forward in the lush Sunshine Coast Hinterland hills!

Spring at Secrets on the Lake means glorious clear blue skies that seem to expand forever over the many stunning views out to the Sunshine Coast beaches, lush green hills, magnificent Lake Baroon, or our pristine national parks and rainforest.

Spring at Secrets on the Lake means our luxury treehouse guests are out on magnificent Lake Baroon enjoying water sports once again. It means slicing through the morning mist on our kayaks, throwing a fishing rod in, or throwing out your picnic rug and enjoying our lush grounds and lake breezes.

Spring at Secrets on the Lake means all those longer hours of great weather and sunshine give you more time to enjoy the many nature walks and bushwalking trails through our national parks and vibrant lakeside gardens. It means baby possums, laughing kookaburras and lazy lizards coming to say hello while you enjoy the views and serenity from your treehouse deck.

Spring at Secrets on the Lake means love is in the air… and this year that means a lot of couples are choosing to escape the crowds and elope in our stunning rustic, rainforest, or lakeside venues. We have all inclusive packages that even include your honeymoon getaway! We have sourced some of the hinterland’s best suppliers for you so that you can focus purely on enjoying the day and committing to the one you love. We have taken all the stress out of planning your special day… all you need to do is find that perfect dress and say I do!

Spring at Secrets on the Lake means immersing in an alfresco dining experience and reconnecting with nature and each other at our Dining on the Deck daytime rainforest restaurant. Soak up the lake views and wood carvings, dream big at the restaurant’s hand carved tree of dreams, or make a wish sitting on the wishing chair hand carved from a giant cedar root in our reception.

And Spring means the rollout of our brand-new menu that Chef Mat and his talented team have been perfecting over the last months! We have found the best quality fresh local ingredients to spoil your taste buds with and invite you to dig your teeth into these mouth-watering new Spring dishes. And for all our repeat guests… don’t worry, we have kept your favourite dishes as part of the new menu! Give our friendly staff a call and book yourself in for some Secrets Springtime Magic.

Call 07 5478 5888 or email or visit to book or find out more! We look forward to seeing you through our beautiful hand carved doors very soon!

About Us - Secrets on the Lake

Putting your best foot forward…

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Earlier this year, Secrets on the Lake was forced to close our beautiful hand-carved doors to the public after 25 years of welcoming guests to our magical treehouse hideaway tucked away in the Sunshine Coast Hinterland. This period of lock down hit the hospitality industry hard and our hearts go out to the many businesses who did not survive this time and are still struggling now. We remain eternally grateful for the patronage of our treehouse guests and Dining on the Deck foodies who have returned to our business as restrictions slowly lifted.

In this life, we are presented with hundreds of situations and opportunities each day. Some are wonderful and full of promise… like meeting the person of your dreams or landing that dream job. Some, like the implications of COVID19, are not so wonderful. Life comes fast and change can happen when you least expect it! But whatever the positivity of the situation that presents itself, they all have lessons for us to learn, unique opportunities for growth, and things to be grateful for.

As I sit here with the wisdom of my 76 years on this planet, I think for me the key to riding this rollercoaster of a year is to take life by the horns and just go with it…ride that wave the best you can! For us, much as things can at times be bleak, the only thing we can count on is that nothing lasts forever. Putting your best foot forward is an important, yet under-rated life skill.

At Secrets on the Lake, George and I decided to take this unique period of time where we were closed to the public to roll out a maintenance schedule that would not have been possible in ordinary circumstances. When you visit us now you will see new tarmacked driveways, new decking areas, lush new planting, and all of our beautiful woodwork and carvings have been sanded and re-oiled until they sparkle better than new. It is something we are now grateful to be forced to close our doors for. It means we can continue to provide our guests and visitors with the most magical experience possible when they visit us by the magical waters of Lake Baroon.

So rather than become overwhelmed as is so easy in these uncertain times… Let us enjoy being in each other’s company while we can and give each other roses while we can smell them. We invite you to book a table in our magnificent daytime rainforest restaurant Dining on the Deck and come and smell the roses… literally! When they are plentiful, George and our friendly staff have them on hand to give you as you leave the restaurant as our return customers will remember with a smile.

If you have a little more time up your sleeve, then revisit your bucket list and book a stay in one of our world class luxury treehouses featured on national TV as the ‘perfect romantic escape’. It is about living our best life by appreciating where we are at this moment and being grateful. Grateful for getting another 24 hours of opportunities and experiences. Grateful for the special people that are in our lives, and most of all being grateful for the beautiful part of the world we call home. We hope to see you soon!

For more information or to book, please contact our friendly staff on 07 5478 5888 or email or visit

How to include absent wedding guests…

By Latest

We are all going through unprecedented and unpredictable times as the COVID-19 pandemic plays out across the globe. Tucked away in the beautiful Sunshine Coast Hinterland, the stunningly intimate Secrets on the Lake is very happy to once again be able to open our treehouse doors to excited guests, our Dining on the Deck Restaurant to 40 people across 2 different dining areas, and our Secrets Wedding Garden to ceremonies of up to 20 people. Roll on July 10th when gatherings can be up to 100 people again!

From the Secrets on the Lake family to your family… we hope everyone is keeping their heads and back pockets above water. It is easy to get overwhelmed with the media’s fear machine of bad news and stories of heartache. While we don’t dismiss or diminish the hardships many suffer… it is so important to balance the bad news with a celebration of  the good that is also happening all around us in random acts of kindness, healing and creative connection. The human spirit is truly indomitable. And it is quite inspiring to see how creativity kicks in with some new and different kinds of weddings, weddings that might not be exactly what you imagined your special day to be, but weddings that focus on the most important thing – two people in love saying ‘I do’.

My partner and I have been one of those wedding couples trying to juggle the ever-changing social distancing regulations, venue number maximums, travel bans, and a myriad of other restrictions. Our wedding date was meant to be May 1st 2020. We have since had to reconcile that some of our special people living abroad still won’t be able to be there for our new date in November… but no more postponements. Just because your parents from England, your best friend from Amsterdam, or your brother from New Zealand can’t be physically part of your wedding day… doesn’t mean that they need to miss out on the excitement and ‘feel goods’ of the day.

Here are some of the things we have come up with to best share your special day with the special people who can’t be there… and a shout out to the amazing suppliers who have happily postponed and rescheduled, and helped us make it all happen.

  • The biggest thing we have decided to do since the COVID crazy, is to hire a videographer to capture the day! With today’s technology our ceremony can even be livestreamed so that our absent loved ones can watch the event in real time! Ashlee from Jensen & Young has been awesome in creating an affordable package to capture the ceremony and reception. She will capture all the details, as well as the smiles and tears, and the crazy family dance we have been practicing for the dance floor.  And for us… it’s the best way to let our absent loved ones relive the experience and still be as much a part of the day as we can possibly allow.

Time goes by so quickly, and especially seems that way on special occasions – I want my couples and clients to truly be in the moment. Having someone solely focused on capturing it allows couples to be present with their partners, friends and family. I love the film medium for how it allows us to relive past moments; we hear voices again, laughter and tears. We re-watch our younger selves, our family and children and reconnect with the atmosphere and energy of the day. Film tells a story and creates an experience that you can share with others in a way that brings the experience to them so they feel part of the celebration as well. I’ve never had clients that regret getting a film and it’s a beautiful compliment to photos. 

Ashlee Jensen

  • Our award-wining photographer Ben Connolly will be in his creative element capturing images of the ceremony and reception for us to enjoy and share with everyone there and abroad. I can’t recommend his work highly enough! The Sunshine Coast Hinterland has some great photographers available to capture your special day.
  • Even though travel bans are in place for overseas and interstate travel… we have sent the invite out anyway to let our loved ones know just how important they are to us.
  • We are going to mention our absent loved ones with a shout out in our speeches and in the words of our lovely celebrant Merlin Coughlin
  • Our DJ Cut-A-Rug has a list of special songs to play over the course of the night… each of them significant for that friendship or relationship.
  • We have made some time to give our special people a call on the big day so we can have that one-on-one moment with them.
  • And for those that have been able to postpone or get refunds on flights, we are freezing some wedding cake to share with them down the track.

If you have had to postpone your wedding, or are wanting advice on how to Elope or get married at our stunning lakeside wedding venue at Secrets on the Lake… don’t hesitate to get in touch with our friendly staff on 07 54785 888 or email or visit

When life gives you lemons…

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When life gives you lemons… you still have choices… and Secrets on the Lake in the Sunshine Coast Hinterland is busy making lemonade. While social distancing restrictions have forced our doors to close for the first time in 25 years our amazing cleaning team and clever maintenance guys have been working overtime to make everything bling.

Our stunning world class treehouses have all been scrubbed, oiled, painted and polished so that they gleam even brighter than usual. Secrets Dining on the Deck restaurant has been extended, sanded and re-oiled and is ready to provide patrons with mouth-watering meals in a stunning rainforest lakeside location. The driveway tarmac has been redone and extended to include our guest’s carpark spots, and our walkways and decks have been pressure cleaned and maintained to perfection. We have been busy making sure that Secrets is wearing its Sunday best when restrictions lift and we can welcome you through our doors again!

While no one has a crystal ball… changes are coming soon. People are ringing us to make tentative bookings and we are delighted to pencil you in on those special days you are wanting to celebrate. Lord knows we all need something to look forward to at the moment! Until restrictions officially lift, when you call to lock in your special getaway in one of our world class treehouses, no money changes hands until the government gives us the go ahead to re-open.

We are still taking Gift Voucher bookings for those special gifts to spoil your loved ones, or those amazing souls that have gone above and beyond supporting us and our community during these unprecedented times. The accommodation industry is on tenderhooks waiting for the go-ahead to start operating again. Talk has been around the 29th May that this may happen? Where is that crystal ball again?…

Once restrictions have lifted so that Secrets on the Lake can open it’s beautiful hand carved doors again… we will call up those that have tentatively booked to start taking deposit and booking money. Our weekend bookings over winter are already fairly full… so get in now if you have a birthday, anniversary or achievement to celebrate and want to make a tentative booking. Aldy and Hayley are in the office and would love to take your call.

For more information or to make a tentative booking or purchase a gift voucher please contact our friendly staff on 07 5478 5888 or email or visit

Lake Baroon Secrets

Catch Me If You Can Winners…

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We would like to shout out a big thank you to all the avid fishermen, fisherwomen, and fisher kids that entered the Secrets Catch Me If You Can Fishing Competition held over February and March this year. The beautiful Lake Baroon boasted quite a few extra rods in visitors hands these last few months as entrants tried their luck for our prizes. March 31st was the cut-off date for fishing competition uploads and entries.

Drum roll please….George would like to announce that the winner of the biggest fish is Eruch John Rowan at 52.5cm. Eruch wins a 2 night midweek stay in a luxury treehouse complete with continental breakfast basket and hot croissants or muffins delivered daily. It is valid for 12mths so something to look forward to once Covid 19 passes, or Secrets can offer a completely contact free check-in procedure – so self-isolate in style in our ancient rainforest wonderland.

The winner of the Secrets Mystery length prize is Mike Boucher at 29cms. Mike wins a $100 voucher for our Dining on the Deck daytime rainforest restaurant. Congratulations! We look forward to serving you some mouth-watering dishes very soon.

All funds raised from registration fees go to restocking Lake Baroon’s fish populations. Thank you for your support. We have some extended midweek stay discounts available so if you missed out on the prize you can still experience the magic of Secrets. Give our friendly staff a call on 07 5478 5888 or email or visit

Weddings in Maleny at Secrets on the Lake

Why not elope at Secrets on the Lake…

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At Secrets on the Lake, our hearts go out to the wedding couples about to married over the coming months, who now also have to anticipate the implications of the coronavirus, health regulations and travel bans… and even rethink their guest list size because of the new limitation of no more than 100 people gathered in an indoor location. I say this with a personal note, as I am one of those couples in this situation… our special day is 6 weeks away, and we have had to reconcile our hearts with the absence of many international family and friends who are now banned from entering Australia. The lead up to your wedding is meant to be a time of excitement and anticipation…albeit a few nerves and the occasional cold foot. We would like to keep it that way for all our upcoming Secrets Weddings.

Over the years, Secrets have been blessed with hosting some beautiful weddings in the magical Secrets Garden nestled on the edge of magnificent Lake Baroon. Its stunning rock pools, decking, bridges and lush gardens are a very special place to say ‘I do’ with the one you love in the company of an intimate group of family and friends. It is also the perfect place to elope! We are an open air venue and have always had a maximum guest number of 80 people so the latest health regulations around maximum numbers of public gatherings do not impact on any of the weddings booked in at Secrets. But if you have been impacted by this at another venue then please give us a call and we will do our best to accommodate you.

A wedding is about 2 people committing to one another in shared love and support. It really is just about two people… and Secrets have joined forces with the best suppliers in the hinterland to be able to offer you some really affordable midweek elopement packages, including 2 nights honeymoon in one of our world-class luxury treehouses for only $3500 (valid until 31st Dec 2020). Our elopement packages also provide the celebrant, photographer, cake, flowers and button holes, signing table and canapes with champagne. If you choose to, we can even provide meals to your cabin or a bbq hamper for your deck so you can escape into the magic of our ancient rainforest and not see another soul over your honeymoon! Self-isolating has never been so easy, or so breathtaking!

When important friends and family cant be around for your special day… then the images captured on the day become all that more important, and we have sourced the best of the best with 2 amazing local photographers… the lovely Lou O’Brien or the award-winning Ben Connolly (see image header). In light of current events, for my own wedding we have now decided to hire a videographer to capture our ceremony and highlights for our very disappointed family and friends who have had to cancel flights and will miss out on sharing the day with us. As a service to upcoming weddings and elopements, we are going to include the option of adding on videography services by the award winning Jensen and Young to our elopement or wedding packages for an additional $600. This gives you a 10-12min video covering your vows and highlights, often including drone footage (weather permitting).

I would like to reassure our upcoming weddings that Secrets on the Lake is an open-air wedding venue and our guest capacity is 80 people. Our receptions are either held at the beautiful Lakehouse, or the stunning alfresco Dining on the Deck rainforest restaurant. Our staff have amped up catering protocols to space tables for social distancing, disinfect all tableware between use, and now only place plates and glasswear out as required to avoid any contamination. So as far as coronavirus regulations and Secrets Weddings are concerned… its full steam ahead and back to keeping your jitters for the vows.

Don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any concerns or need to book a last minute venue change or elopement. Call 07 5478 5888 or email or visit


Lake Baroon Secrets

Stay safe. Stay local. Stay at Secrets…

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As global efforts to contain coronavirus intensify, many holidaymakers are being inconvenienced as they are forced to navigate flight disruptions, city lockdowns, travel bans and quarantine rules. Australians are highly likely to find their overseas holidays affected this year by delays or cancellations. To date, the coronavirus has infected almost 90,000 people around the world, and with new outbreak locations being reported all the time, it’s very hard to predict where will be affected next, and what that might mean for travelers.

As there is no question that this will take months to pan out, it’s prompted many Australians to wonder whether it’s even wise to travel abroad. The question of where you should lay down your weary head, and your hard-earned money, for your weekend getaway or family holiday this year really becomes all about who you can trust. At Secrets on the Lake, our advice is to ‘Stay safe, and stay local’.

For 25 years now we have been spreading our ‘secret’ and the wonders of the Sunshine Coast Hinterland right on your doorstep. As I am sitting here taking in the mist floating above the magnificent Lake Baroon and listening to the gentle sounds of wildlife scurrying and birds chirping on this beautiful March morning, I can think of no place I would rather be.

Whether you want to hideaway for a week with your loved one in the luxury of your world-class treehouse as you sip champagne to the warmth and crackle of your open fire? Or, if exploring the ancient rainforest and stunning waterfalls of our many national parks is more your style… there really is something for everyone at Secrets on the Lake.

Why not sample the taste sensations of our award-winning iconic Dining on the Deck lakeside rainforest restaurant, or the many other top class restaurants in our region. You can browse the boutique shops and tour the fantastic art trails of the hinterland. You can visit some of the top 10 beaches in the world only 30 mins away on the Sunshine Coast. We are also only 2 hours from Frazer Island! In fact, you could explore for weeks and still be finding new things to do, experience and enjoy in our beautiful hinterland and Sunshine Coast region!

We have some discounted special rates for long stays so if you are thinking about where to go for your extended holiday this year… contact us for more information about how we can help you with the ultimate world-class romantic or family holiday right on your doorstep in the beautiful Sunshine Coast.

Call 07 5478 5888 or email or visit for more information.

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