The SpaceChalmers is a large elegant and peaceful house built from the massive granite stone upon and amongst which it stands. It was built for the blissful pleasure of communing with the beautiful environment that surrounds Chalmers at whatever level ones interest and/or physical capacity desires or allows. Windows extend to the floor and wide opening, glass, French doors open throughout the house onto the elegant terrace, spacious verandah and even onto the small, sunny, breakfast patio that adjoins the master bedroom. The house, terrace, verandah and the main bathroom are all accessible to wheelchairs.
The large open-plan kitchen, dining and living area, is naturally lit by a clerestory and floor level windows and French doors that open onto the expansive north facing terrace with its open log fireplace for warmth and atmosphere on dark starry nights. The serene and cosy drawing room, warmed by the open fire in the classical fireplace, also opens through glass french doors onto the expansive verandah. The verandah connects to the terrace and also faces north, but, for good measure it wraps around the drawing room to overlook the Pranjip Creek valley east to the opposite range of the Strathbogies.
The large kitchen is equipped with a large range with double oven, refrigerator, freezer (in the laundry) microwave oven, dishwasher, toaster and bench-top espresso machine. The concealed laundry has a sink and front loading washing machine.
The split-level master bedroom includes a dressing room with walk in robe and bedside reading space with bookshelves and library for quiet escape and contemplation. The second and third bedrooms are also large. The former with large built in robe also opens onto the east facing section of the verandah 3 metres above the ground. the third bedroom has floor level windows facing the small breakfast patio.
The master bedroom has a spacious ensuite bathroom that is also accessible from the open plan lounge for convenient access during the day. The main bathroom has a small spa bath suitable for just one or two people located beside large windows offering secluded bushland views whilst one bathes. The main bathroom also has an open shower and toilet suitable for access from wheelchairs and other disability aids and includes an adjustable hand held shower and grab rail. Guest AccessGuests will have access to the entire house but I would request them to stay out of any bedroom(s) they do not need to use. I will not be there to greet guests but will provide instructions with locate and obtain the door keys from the lockbox. Interaction with GuestsI will leave guests entertain and provide for themselves during their stay but nevertheless, I'm happy to assist and provide services if possible if requested before guest's scheduled arrival. The NeighborhoodShould you want consumer and other diversions whilst you relax at Chalmers there are plenty. Chalmers is located in the heart of the Goulburn and Strathbogie ranges winegrowing areas. Chateau Tahbilk, one of Australia's best known and awarded wineries together with Mitchelton are just half an hour away near Nagambie with its beautiful litttle lake and township. Fowles winery with its cool climate, Strathbogie Ranges wines is even closer, barely 15 minutes back down the freeway towards Melbourne, near Avenel with its Kelly history, superb, fine wool garment emporium and the monthly produce market.
Fun and fine dining opportunities also await. The range of options awaiting visitors are well illustrated by Chateau Tahbilk's beautiful and enchanting restaurant with superb dining on their terrace overlooking their tranquil Goulburn lagoon, with its water lilies and walking track. Avenel has friendly Banks Street Woodfired Pizza where you can line your tummy with delicious hot wood fired pizzas in their charming restaurant or shady garden, or you could drop in to Ruffy Produce Store and cafe for lunch on little trip out Chalmers back door up and around the beautiful and rugged Strathbogies. Many other opportunities such as the Fowles Restaurant at their winery near Avenel or the White Hart Hotel at Longwood close by or a shopping trip to Shepparton will cater for a wide range of tastes but should your plans include a visit to any of the above restaurant venues I strongly advise securing your visit with a reservation beforehand. Getting AroundChalmers is literally only a couple of minutes away from the easy safe driving of the Hume Freeway. It will take you just 1.5 hours on the freeway from the ring road to Chalmers front door. Other Things to NoteThe bushland surrounding Chalmers is a treasure trove of native plants and wildlife. Depending on the time of day, the season, weather, the patience and powers of observation, knowledge and experience, guests staying at Chalmers will have opportunities to watch and wonder at Chalmers plants, birds, animals and reptiles living their lives.
Bird baths and feeders ensure regular visits by a myriad of beautiful small birds including thornbills, weebils, spotted pardelotes, blue wrens, firetail finches,silver eyes and of course those larger crimson rosellas, always on the lookout for a free feed. Many birds such as cuckoos, cuckoo shrikes, friar birds, golden and rufous whistlers, red robins, rainbow birds and white throated tree creepers are annual visitors that stay for varying periods at different times of the year. My favourite in that group is 'Silver', Chalmers' own grey shrike thrush who moves into her 'bedroom' in spring sheltered under Chalmers verandah, outside the second bedroom, to raise her annual clutch of youngsters to the beautiful sound of her familiar call. Almost 70 native bird species have been recorded visiting Chalmers, but birds you will not see include sparrows, starlings, Indian mynars and other exotic birds that are so common and irritating throughout much of Australia.
The thump you may hear in the night will be the sound of a brushtailed possum landing on the roof during its nocturnal wanderings; the water splashed around the front door will have come from the feet of an echidna that has been for a drink in the bog garden beside the front door; and the wire netting fence around the amazing natural rock garden in front of the terrace and verandah is to try and keep the kangaroos, wallabies and wombats away from the plants struggling to establish and grow there. I am not suggesting you will see all of these things but you will see the birds and don't be surprised if you see the others. If you take a constitutional up Tuan lane which starts across the road from Chalmers entrance, it's a couple of K's of good exercise walk up to the private gate and back. Also, if you take your walk in the early morning or early evening you stand a good chance of seeing wallabies or a mob of kangaroos.
But whether or not you leave the house and the built surrounds, a stay at Chalmers will the become an opportunity to commune with the country, nature, the landscape, the fresh air, the endless sky, and, at night its myriad stars. Under Chalmers' spell, in such private moments, you will contemplate the universe and I suspect you will wonder about things like God and the infinite.