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'L' Places to stay

Four lovely places to stay in Victoria, all starting with L.



Just across the road from Brown Bros winery, pioneers of viticulture in this superb corner of Victoria, there is a sort of Tuscan feel to Lindenwarrah. It could be the tall ceilings and large rooms with clean lines which yet don't seem too austere to be welcoming - chairs soft enough to invite you to sink into them, and the beds wide and puffy with doonas and cushions. You know the sort of thing. Maybe it's the fact you look out onto vineyards and olive trees and mountains - sometimes snowcapped. Of course the gourmet setting is a bonus in my eyes. It meant we sat down to dinner in Lindenwarrah's Restaurant Merlot one evening and enjoyed world-class local cheeses, wines and produce, as the maitre dé shared bits of local knowledge with us.

Lindenwarrah, Milawa, north-east Victoria, 03 5720 5777,  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it



You can tell a lot about a city hotel by its doorman, and The Langham has one of the best, a charming elegantly clad man who on several occasions went out of his way to give us directions and advice. Inside and up the escalators and curving staircases is what you would expect - top-hotel 'teflon' coating which has service gliding effortlessly into place without appearing to hasten. A special treat was to stay on the Executive Floor where our breakfast room (and source of other snacks) was just two floors above us, in a genteel  room where I quickly learned to make a great espresso at various times during the day. Sadly the meetings for which we were visiting Melbourne meant we missed the complimentary Happy Hour, but breakfast more than made up for that anyway.

The Langham Hotel, Melbourne, Victoria, 03 8696 8888,



This sister property to Lindenwarrah, just an hour from Melbourne, is more a  five star luxury country house than a hotel. Here too we enjoyed a very lovely meal featuring locally sourced produce at the Linden Tree Restaurant, seated beside a roaring fire as the weather had turned suddenly cool. I guess the weather was my excuse for not taking a pre-dinner walk in the nearby bush, or even into the gardens, as I saw other guests doing. Truth was our room, and its massive (and massively comfortable) bed was most responsible for changing my mind. We reminded ourselves there was a pool upstairs that we could use before leaving in the morning. Maybe.

Lindenderry, Red Hill, Mornington Peninsula, Victoria, 03 5989 2933, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it



It's the little things at Lake House, I think, that set it apart. It has all the big things of course: a spa, including a private treetop room, one of the state's top restaurants, and five-star service and comfort, but my suspicion is that it's the little things that set it apart and has people voting for it - enough to make it one of Australia's most highly awarded properties. I like the reed-fringed lake, the ducks, the kookaburra that comes each afternoon to join in the (complimentary) afternoon tea. I like the personal touch on the breakfast buffet - one of the best I know - where the name of the man who collects the honey is propped beside the jar. I am lucky enough to have stayed here before and what I especially appreciate is how Lake House makes me feel I am coming home.

Lake House, Daylesford, Victoria, 03 5348 3329,  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ,


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