Monday, March 07, 2016
Tasmania: Pumphouse Point (Day 1).
If you asked me what the absolute highlight of our trip was, it probably would have been this. Our time in Cradle Mountain came in as very close competition, but I'm not sure I could say it beat staying at the top floor of the beautiful, award-winning Pumphouse Point at Lake St. Clair National Park. I felt pretty lucky to have been able to book it—I was booking 6 months in advance, but already nearly all surrounding dates were completely booked. To think this place has only been open from the 1st January, 2015!
The entire experience was something Tom Haverford & Donna Meagle would've been proud of. We were greeted at reception to a glass of champagne and a conversation. Not the bland kind of small talk that you briefly have before going over the totally banal details of checking into a typical hotel, prior to being rushed off to your room—but actual conversation, where there was absolutely no hurry in the act of getting to know one another.
We were offered freshly baked, complimentary loaves of sourdough, delivered to our room whenever we liked. The kitchen in our room was something else in itself—taking up quite a bit of space, the fridge was fully stocked with Tasmanian wines, cheeses, salmon, duck, chicken, gourmet jams, and plenty of other local produce. Our rooms also had plenty of books, many of which were on food, travel, and Tasmanian highlights such as MONA. There were bikes and canoes you could use free of charge all around the property. In the common areas, there were board games and cosy, lush blankets, big sofas, and of course, the honesty bar—a fully stocked bar where you would help yourself, and they trust you to write down what you've taken from the bar.
In the evenings, we joined our fellow guests for dinner at the Shorehouse and made new friends (most of which were, coincidentally, also Queenslanders—but a few of which were from America, Germany and Switzerland). I loved this intimate setting. With only 34 other guests on the property, you felt like you were in your own little community—big enough that you had your own space and freedom, but small enough for things to feel like home.