The blogosphere is a useful source of word of mouth information or word of keyboard and screen as the case may be. Without some blog or other (I can’t remember now) I would never have gone to see Spiderman 2. And though I didn’t think it was a great movie, it was a good one and I was glad I went.
In a similar spirit, I thought I’d mention somewhere my family and I stayed at Berry south of Kiama and just North of Nowra with my family and some old friends between Christmas and New Year. We all loved it. About 12 years ago the proprietor a labour lawyer did a bit of a sea change, left Sydney and built the Broughton Mill Farmstay. Onto an old cottage he built a foyer, library and a very spacious light filled lounge dining area. Between these spaces now hangs kiwifruit vines that keep the place in home grown kiwifruit for months at a time. Hedges all round separate the courtyards of the various suites and the swimming pool from the creek, from the tennis court etc.
There are about six split level bed sit suites with a single queens size bed in them and the ability to have an additional single bed on the sofa you can probably get a family of four in a suite at a stretch but we hired two suites for four nights. We were told it was rated ‘five star’ and if it is the people who award these things have more sense than I thought. Because it had the mod cons that I think are important clean bathrooms, air-conditioning, tennis courts and delicious breakfast food of which more in a sec. But nothing excessive. So there was soap and towels and even toothbrushes and tampons in the rooms but not shoe shine kits as are all the rage in five star hotels in the city. There were no fridges in rooms and thus no ‘mini-bars’, but there was a communal fridge that worked fine and in fact added to the atmosphere.
There was a swimming pool and somewhat aged tennis court all generously fenced and housed by their respective hedges.
There weren’t phones in rooms which was a surprise, but then most people have mobiles these days anyway. But each room and the library had oodles of books that one could browse through. I read quite a bit of Churchill’s “My Early Life” which is fantastic, a book of Kenneth Clark essays which were surprisingly good, and some essays from a book of Phillip Adams’ columns from the eightie, which were rather odd.
In fact this ‘sharing’ aspect and the fact that one had been trusted with books which can’t be done in a city hotel added immeasurably to the atmosphere and made one feel a little as one does staying with friends or in one’s own holiday home.
There were chooks, and fruit trees and various things that produce fresh food, and lots of preserved food from previous seasons. This was all served up as part of the deal for Breakfast. A cake was miraculously baked each afternoon and served in the lounge! It was surprisingly yellow, apparently from the yellowness of those farm fresh eggs.
It was fairly pricey though that may have just reflected the high peak season and our own lateness in booking. I can be a stingy bugger, but that’s largely because I hate the feeling I get when I spend up and (as happens all too often) get something mediocre. In this case it was a thorough delight, and worth every penny. We’ll be going back for more.