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Good Weekend’s 52 weekends away


The kids aren’t a problem in these child-friendly establishments, so grab the boys and girls and make for the hills and dales – and beaches.


60 Julia Street, Portland, Vic

PHONE: 0429 852 235

WEB: annesleyhouse.com.au

The location  Tasmanian whalers found their way to Portland around the beginning of the 19th century, and it wasn’t long before its deep-sea port and rich arable hinterland brought industry and farming to the area. Accessible from both Melbourne and Adelaide, Portland’s architecture, combined with beaches, national parks and great fishing, ensure the long-term survival of this historic town.

The place  Built in 1878 as the surgery and home of one Dr Brewer – he was one of Portland’s first doctors and surgeons – Annesley House was designed to impress. Its latest incarnation began in 2004 when current owner Mark Robinson began his careful restoration. The house now contains six apartments, of which Dr Brewer’s Rooms, on the ground floor, is one. It comprises an imposing master bedroom, originally the surgery’s waiting room, and two considerably smaller ones. The kitchen/diner/lounge area is comfortable and very well set up, with everything from toaster to toys for the kids. If more space is required, there is the doctor’s grand parlour, now serving as a communal lounge for guests. Beyond it, the conservatory overlooks a very pretty courtyard garden.

The experience  Annesley House, in the heart of Portland’s CBD, means that a stroll around town, taking in the shops, eateries, galleries, museums and gardens, is easy. If you tire, a cable-tram ride along the foreshore is restful and commands stunning views across the ocean. After that, a swim at Nuns Beach will round off the day nicely.

Don’t miss  The Maritime Discovery Centre, Powerhouse Motor & Car Museum and Fawthrop Lagoon, with its rich bird life and vegetation. A drive to Cape Nelson and a tour of the lighthouse are also well worth the effort.

Need to know

cost: $265 a night for four guests.

distance: a hour’s drive (360km) west of Melbourne.

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