Despite the fact that the Yarra Valley is just 1.5 hours drive from Melbourne; we thought that staying overnight would allow us to relax and enjoy ourselves all the more. But where to stay? There is no shortage of hotels and bed and breakfasts in wine country, but one property stood out to me above the rest.
Charnwood Cottages offer two self-contained hideaways perched above the Yarra River in the quaint township of Warburton. Both feature four-poster beds, gas fires and an in-room spa bath – ideal for a romantic getaway. One cottage has a pale blue colour scheme, the other, a deep claret red. (The photos on their website hardly do the cottages justice.)
We stayed in Savannah’s Cottage, and the décor that had appeared kitsch to us online was revealed to be modern, tasteful and warm. The bath was generous in size and luxuriously appointed. And, to our surprise the separate bathroom also featured a double shower.
The kitchen was truly state of the art with a stovetop, a fridge, a microwave and even a full-size oven and dishwasher. The fire was both picturesque and practical, and there was also the option of reverse cycle air conditioning to ensure the temperature would always be just right.
It was conveniently located mere seconds across a swing bridge from the main street, tennis courts and a golf course. I had a relaxing massage and whiled away a few pleasant hours browsing the speciality tea store and scribbling in one of the inviting cafes.
Breakfast was a lavish affair of bacon, eggs, mushrooms and toast, all thoughtfully provided the day before and waiting for us in the fridge.
The supremely comfortable bed, serene semi-bush location and thoughtful small details (like the plush Sheridan bathrobes and a checkout time of 12pm) all combined to make this a truly memorable stay.