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Australia’s celebrities are flocking to buy properties in the Southern Highlands

The Southern Highlands in New South Wales has become something of a celebrity haven in recent years, with Nicole Kidman, Michelle Bridges, Samantha Armytage and Phoebe Burgess joining other stars in snapping up sprawling homes in the tranquil countryside.

Looking for a refuge from the hustle and bustle of city life, many of Australia’s most famous faces escape to the peaceful area 100km south-west of Sydney when they need a break. 

And at just a 90-minute drive south-west of Sydney, it’s the perfect place to unwind without being too far from the city. 

Nicole Kidman owns a property in the area, which she bought back in 2008 for $6.5million.

The heritage home was built in 1878 and sits on 45 hectares.

The 53-year-old actress is currently quarantining on the property along with her husband of 14 years, Keith Urban, and the couple’s two daughters, Sunday, 12, and Faith, nine. 

After returning from the US on Monday, the couple angered fellow travellers when they were given special permission to quarantine at home instead of spending two weeks .

According to a report by The Daily Telegraph in March, the family is considering making their move to the property permanent and have reportedly enrolled their daughters at a local school.

The stunning home featured as the backdrop for a video interview the Big Little Lies actress gave to US Vogue back in July 2015. 

Titled ’73 Questions With Nicole Kidman’, the star revealed she loves escaping to the property 

The Hollywood star says she loves the region because of ‘the simplicity, the air [and] the peace’. 

Meanwhile, Samantha Armytage, 43, also owns a luxury countryside property in the area.

The Sunrise host bought her home back in April 2017, spending $2.2million on the Southern Highlands retreat, according to a report by realestate.com.au.

The regional NSW property features five bedrooms with ensuite bathrooms, along with a modern open-plan kitchen. 

There’s also timber floored lounge and dining rooms, which feature a fireplace.  

The living spaces open out onto a spacious outdoor deck area, which includes an open fire, making it the perfect place for entertaining.

The home features a wrap-around verandah and is surrounded by lush green lawns and trees on the two-hectare property. 

It also includes paddocks, with Samantha an avid horse rider, spending most of her weekends at the country property.

There’s also a separate studio cottage, with a small creek winding its way through the country retreat.  

Samantha’s new fiancé, businessman Richard Lavender, owns a rural property nearby.

In an interview with The Daily Telegraph in July 2017, Samantha spoke about her love of being in the country.

‘For years and years I have talked about it and I’ve known that my country roots are important to me,’ she said.

‘Nowadays I’ve realised that I really need it for my sanity I guess, to get back to the country and get my hands in the dirt and be in nature. It is really important.’  

Phoebe Burgess, 31, is another star who calls the Southern Highlands her home away from home.

The ex-wife of former rugby league footballer Sam Burgess relocated to her parents’ sprawling country property with the couple’s two children after the demise of her marriage in October last year.

Phoebe grew up at the property with her parents, Mitch and Sarah Hooke, and sisters, Jemima and Harriet. 

Nestled on nine acres of manicured garden, the spacious estate is brimming with rustic charm.

The stunning limestone residence features high ceilings throughout, large living areas, a formal dining room, two offices, five bedrooms, three bathrooms and a timber kitchen. 

It also boasts a formal entrance lobby, media room, covered outdoor entertainment area and large double garage. 

Phoebe’s horse-loving family also owns a state-of-the-art stable complex and timber-railed paddock area. 

A vegetable garden and chicken run offer hours of entertainment for Phoebe’s kids.

The property’s landscaped rose garden and manicured hedging also offer the perfect backdrop for Phoebe’s many Instagram photo shoots. 

‘Dressed up for the chooks,’ she captioned a series of Instagram photos of herself on the property back in May.  

The luxurious property also acted as the backdrop for Phoebe and Sam’s wedding back in December 2015. 

Michelle Bridges, 49, purchased her Southern Highlands retreat for a reported $2.7million back in January 2018, according to a report by Home Beautiful at the time.

The celebrity fitness trainer reportedly outbid chef Luke Mangan, who had also been eyeing off the property. 

The home features five bedrooms, a swimming pool and a tennis court, with Michelle regularly escaping to the home on weekends. 

The nine-acre property also features a separate guest barn and artist studio, along with ample amounts of outdoor space for entertaining.

It also boasts both casual and formal dining rooms, along with a low combustion fireplace, while floor to ceiling windows offer uninterrupted views of the surrounding area.

Michelle regularly escapes to the home on weekends, with her young son, Axel.  

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