ONE HISTORIC GARDEN presents a fabulous calendar of events at our seven restored and revitalised gardens in South and West Wales – from the famous Daffodil Season and Bluebell Walks, to a pop-up restaurant in a castle on Mother’s Day and night-time bat and moth spotting. We have over 80 special events to tempt lovers of the great outdoors – not to mention seven restored parks, gardens and woodlands to rediscover.
In South and West Wales, seven historic gardens, parks and woodlands have been given a great regeneration boost by the European Regional Development Fund through Visit Wales and the Welsh Government. Each of the properties has a wonderful events programme for 2014 (a sample of which can be found below). A full list of all events at the seven properties can be found on the Events page of the One Historic Garden website.
Aberglasney Gardens – here the unique cloister garden and rare parapet wall, hidden for centuries, were restored 16 years ago. Now the magnificent Georgian mansion has been brought back to life and is host to a series of delightful exhibitions and events. Don’t miss the ancient yew tunnel and the fantastical Ninfarium where tropical plants grow among the ruined walls of the central courtyard of the mansion.
Event: Early March to mid-May – Daffodil Season
Follow the beautiful daffodil trail through the garden – there are more varieties to see than ever. A glorious experience to enjoy from early March onwards.
At Bryngarw Country Park the elegant 18th-century country house nestles in 113 acres of woods and fields. Now it is home to an amazing selection of wildlife from bats, birds and butterflies to the more bashful polecat, nuthatch and dipper. Highly skilled rangers offer fascinating bush craft courses such as foraging and den building.
Event: 22nd-23rd March 2014 – Ranger Skills Weekend
Learn traditional rangers’ skills like campfire cooking, wild food foraging and using a trail camera to capture the activities of resident mammals.
Colby Woodland Garden is a haven for woodland play and encourages families with children to come and enjoy the natural attractions. There are no `Keep off the Grass’ signs here, just rope swings and stepping stones across the streams. Historically, Colby was famed for the anthracite mined in its small woodland pits – a fuel favoured by Queen Victoria for its ‘smoke-free’ quality.
Event: late Spring – Bluebell Walks at Colby Woodland
Few sights quicken the heart like masses of bluebells – and the upper West-wood at Colby is a picture in late spring.
Dylan Thomas spent his childhood playing in Cwmdonkin Park, recalling “that park grew up with me”. As the centenary of his birth is celebrated this year, the park that inspired Wales’ favourite modern poet to write many of his poems has been fully restored, with new interpretation panels installed.
Event: 6th September 2014 – Green Fuse Festival in Cwmdonkin Park
The Friends of Cwmdonkin Park, Elysium Gallery and the City and County of Swansea present a day of acoustic music, poetry, storytelling, promenading theatre and multi-activity art workshops. This free event brings the legacy of Dylan Thomas to families and adults in a park that was his ‘…world within the world’.
Margam Country Park may now host film crews from around the world but its fairytale castellated mansion and 1,000 acres of land tell an 800-year story featuring monastic ruins, a restored exotic orangery and citrus house, and an ancient walled kitchen garden on its way to being brought back to life.
Event: 30th March 2014 – Mothering Sunday Lunch
Tuck into a Tudor-style banquet in the castle in the ‘pop up restaurant’ by local chef Justin Rees. There’s a champagne and canapé reception on arrival – what a treat for mum!
Penllergare Valley Woods are undergoing one of the more dramatic transformations after being left in disarray and disrepair for some decades. A team of dedicated volunteers is painstakingly uncovering and restoring the 250-acre “edge of wilderness” valley and its amazing terraces and waterfalls built by early photographer John Dillwyn Llewelyn. The Penllergare Observatory, from which one of the earliest photos of the moon was taken, will also be restored in 2014.
Event: 3rd May 2014 – Bat and Moth night-time walk
Find out about bats and moths of the River Llan and Penllergare Valley Woods on this night-time walk/talk with The Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales and The Penllergare Trust. Includes setting a moth trap.
Scolton Manor in Pembrokeshire persuades you to step back in time to the life of a Victorian country squire. The large walled garden is undergoing extensive restoration with an exotic ‘hot’ pineapple house already up and working. The ‘Honey Kitchen’ where honey from the estate is processed and bottled is buzzing, and the new museum store and viewing barn for the agricultural collection is underway.
Event: 29th June 2014 – Race for Life
Take on a 5k Race for Life – run, walk or dance your way through the scenic route. Also bring family and friends for support: there will be stalls, face painting, bouncy castles and other entertainment.
Discover lots more adventures, days out and special events in our natural playgrounds at www.onehistoricgarden.co.uk
More Than Just a Sport
Catchability for iPhone has been designed in Australia specifically for fishing in Australia and includes hand drawn pictures of fish species, maps of where they can be caught, bag limits for each state and live weather and tide information.
The app allows users to:
Follow a fish
Follow the species you like to catch – who’s catching them and where?
Follow a spot
Find out where to go fishing near you and which fish have been caught there. Enter spots of your own.
Follow a person
What are your friends catching and where?
Who’s caught the biggest, longest or the most fish?
Weather and tides
Check the weather and tides before you go and for the next 6 days. Save your favourite places for future checks.
Bag limits and pictures
Identify fish and check the current bag and size limits.
Share your catches on social media (if you wish).
In addition, Catchability have teamed up with well known independent marine biologist Dr Julian Pepperell who will be involved in ongoing analysis of data created from the app about many aspects of fish populations, including:
Seasonal appearance of fish at different locations
How the fishery reacts to news of ‘runs’ of fish in different situations
‘Peaks’ and ‘troughs’ in catches of certain species through time
Sizes of fish of different species being caught by users of the application (it is anticipated that this will be especially useful to monitor catches of the larger ‘trophy’ sized fish – an indicator of health of a fishery).
Correlating time of day of catches with tidal movements and day of the month with moon phases.
Catchability for iPhone available on the App Store:
Catchability has been featured in “What’s hot” by Apple for the past few weeks and has reached number 5 in the sports app download chart.
Until now, planning a long-distance cycle route could take hours of trawling through Google, hopelessly trying to match accommodation providers to your cycle map. Even then, you didn’t know whether they’d have space for your bike, or even welcome you in when arriving soaked through.
Now, thanks to Beds for Cyclists new accommodation route browser, cyclists can simply visit Bedsforcyclists.co.uk, click on the route they want to cycle, and then directly contact any of the cycle-friendly hosts. More importantly, cyclists in need of a bit of ride inspiration can easily browse routes and find out if it’s suitable for them. Each route page tells them the distance, difficulty level, route surface and start and finish points, as well as comprehensive accommodation listings. The site only lists cycle-friendly accommodation providers so you know your bike will have a good night too.
John Grimshaw, Sustrans founder and long distance cycle-route pioneer says, “I’ve been involved, for many years, in the creation of many fantastic long-distance cycle routes but this is the first comprehensive resource I’ve seen for cycle-friendly accommodation along them. It’s not only a really useful resource for the riders, but it’s a great tool for demonstrating the potential cycle routes have to support local businesses, a key factor to developing new routes.”
There are currently 28 long-distance routes featured and new trails will be added as they open. Catering for a range of cyclists there is a wide variety of routes to suit. From the famous and challenging Sea to Sea (C2C) and Way of the Roses routes, to the gentle Norfolk Coast Cycleway or Thames Valley route, beginners and enthusiasts can find a ride to suit them. Even the two Tour de France’s Yorkshire Grand Depart stages are detailed, for those wanting to follow in the tracks of the world’s elite cyclists.
Sam Howard, founder of Beds for Cyclists says, “This new platform will make it easy for cyclists to find accommodation on any major long-distance route in the UK. Our aim is to have a wide variety of cycle-friendly accommodation for every budget, along every major route in the UK. With more and more accommodation providers seeing the potential of the cycling trade and joining the site, this vision is becoming a reality.”
The cycling season is fast approaching so peruse the many brilliant routes on Beds for Cyclists new browser and see which one looks right for you. You know you’ll get a warm welcome wherever you stay and so will your bicycle.
Raw Travel is excited to launch www.montblanctreks.com.au to the series of walkers websites aimed at informing and empowering travellers to make informed choices on travel options. The Mont Blanc Treks site is a perfect addition to the Camino de Santiago site (www.caminodesantiago.com.au) and also the Great Ocean Walks site (www.greatoceanwalks.info) both of which have become the most popular independent websites for those walks.
The launch is perfectly timed for the upcoming trekking season that starts in June. The site is maintained by trek specialists who offer guided Mont Blanc treks during the summer season with expert local and Australian guides and also independent self-guided options. The site is packed full of in depth information on what’s required to prepare for the Mont Blanc Treks and images reflecting the challenges and delights involved with each section of this great walk. There is also a comprehensive reference section with links to guidebooks and other useful sites including innovative 3D maps.
With so much content being produced and published online, Raw Travel has responded to the need to be able to connect quickly and grab the attention of visitors interested in information about Mont Blanc. The website is sleek and fresh, easy to navigate for users and importantly has up to date relevant information. Most of all, the site allows visitors get to know Raw Travel better and what they do as a company.
Owner and Director, Dave Reynolds says “The website reflects Raw Travel’s philosophy of being the experts in the destinations that we travel, whilst having fun and always evolving! By educating our customers with knowledge we offer an exciting differentiator in the market”.
Raw Travel is a privately owned Australian company specialising in walking and cycling holidays where the focus is on every traveler’s personal experience. The launch of the dedicated Mont Blanc Treks website www.montblanctreks.com.au is typical of the Raw Travel approach to reaching and connecting with their customers.
Mia Maze, Marketing Mangager
As Australia’s premier heritage region, it is easy to envision the Goldfields as a place of majestic buildings, mining legacies, gold and historic streetscapes. That changed eight years ago, when the Cycling Australia Road Nationals came to Ballarat. The event cemented the city as the home of Australian Road Cycling, with the 2014 event attracting Tour de France champion Cadel Evans and over 23,000 spectators. The region, however, isn’t just for road cycling enthusiasts. In 2012, the Goldfields Track received a $500,000 upgrade, and was recently unveiled as a dual mountain biking and bush walking route. The next phase in development will see the Goldfields Track creating alternate diversions, providing options for riders ranging from recreational to hardcore.
Starting in Ballarat and ending in Bendigo (or vice versa), the 210km Goldfields Track was originally formed by gold seekers in the 1850s and known as the Great Dividing Trail. It is some of the most beautiful mountain biking and hiking country in Victoria, passing through forests, pastoral countrysides, key Gold Rush cities, and striking lookouts. Its real significance, however, lies in its blend of nature and culture. It is as much a cultural trail as a challenging one, taking in the rich history of the Goldfields. As a link between the major townships of Creswick, Daylesford, Castlemaine, Ballarat and Bendigo, it also offers riders (and bushwalkers) creature comforts; a good cafe, restaurant, bike shop, good spa and comfortable accommodation are easily accessible.
The natural track is broken into four sections; Ballarat to Creswick (2 to 3 hours ride), Creswick to Daylesford (5 to 6 hours ride), Daylesford to Castlemaine (5 to 6 hours ride), and Castlemaine to Bendigo (5 to 6 hours ride). It also links to other trails, allowing for an on-road and off-road experience.
Wallaby Track, 90km, Ballarat to Creswick, Creswick to Daylesford
The Wallaby Track is perhaps the easiest section of the ride. Starting at Mt Buninyong (which is where all the action at the Australia Road Nationals happens), it follows the Yarrowee River through the heart of Ballarat, where riders can spot prospectors trying their luck panning for gold. From there, it is pure mountain bike territory, with the thrilling section being the Creswick state forest. Here, undulating 4WD roads are interspersed with occasional bursts of natural single-track, with roots and shaley lining the path. Passing through mining then pastoral country, the track finishes at picturesque Lake Daylesford after a run through Wombat Forest.
Ride time (Ballarat to Daylesford): 8-10 hours
Walking time (Ballarat to Daylesford): over 4 days
Dry Diggings Track, 61km, Daylesford to Castlemaine
This is the best known and commonly ridden section of the Goldfields Track, with brilliant single-track sections and challenging climbs, descents and creek crossings. It is also one of the most scenic, with sub-tropical forests, Australian bush, and ruins and artefacts from the gold rush days. Riders will look forward to the last few kilometres, which are all downhill.
Ride time: 5 – 6 hours
Walking time: over 4 days
Leanganook Track, 58km, Castlemaine to Bendigo
This section of the track features long and relatively steep ascents, and shorter, rockier, pincher and more technical ones, with plenty of challenges that will leave MTB enthusiasts satisfied. The start of the track (Castlemaine) is a test of strength, with the first 15km comprising uphill climbs. Once over Mt Alexander, the character of the track changes, following the 70km Coliban water system that supplies Bendigo with water from the Great Dividing Range. More uphill climbs follow before the Track runs to a finish in Bendigo.
Ride time: 5 – 6 hours
Walking time: Over 4 days
The Goldfields Track is one and a half hours drive to Ballarat and two and a half to Bendigo. Given the varying terrain, from single tracks and grippy loam to roots, rock ledges and coarse sandstone, it is best suited to those with existing mountain biking experience and fitness. As it is a natural track in bush (though not too far from civilisation), bikers will need to carry adequate water, food, basic mechanical spare parts and a map. Mobile-phone coverage is not always guaranteed in the area, however, the track is well-signposted. Trips, including where to stay and what to do, can be planned through the ‘Plan Your Trip’ function on the Goldfields Track website at www.goldfieldstrack.com.au
WA Taste Master’s adventures on film
WA’s Taste Master Rich Keam has teamed up with expert local guides to help spread the word about Perth’s amazing food and wine. Some of Rich’s culinary journey has been captured on film and features him catching and cooking fresh Rottnest lobster with local restaurateur Kiren Mainwaring, learning the art and history of craft beer making in Fremantle with Feral Brewing Co, exploring Northbridge with Beaufort Street Festival food curator Laura Mosely, and meeting up with local food blogger Whitney Ng. Rich’s journey as Taste Master in WA has come to an end, which saw him travel more than 20,000 kilometres, and visit more than 35 towns and more than 100 restaurants, bars, cafes, wineries, breweries and cider houses.
Pop-up dining with native ingredients
Fervor, created by WA siblings Bree and Paul Iskov, is a new and unique dining concept in the form of a travelling pop-up restaurant focusing on freshly foraged ingredients. In February, Fervor will be hosting a series of pop-up dinners around the Margaret River region – in Lake, Jewel and Mammoth Caves, and the Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse. Guests will be taken on an eight to ten course culinary journey where native ingredients such as paper bark, midjim berry and marron will be transformed into mouth-watering degustation plates. The Fervor concept was fuelled by a passion for native edibles and a deep love and respect for the diverse natural bushland throughout WA, and particularly the Margaret River region.
New hotel for Fremantle
A new hotel has opened in the port city of Fremantle, which is a 20-minute drive from Perth city. The Hougoumont Hotel officially opened in late November, and offers affordable luxury in a prime location on Bannister Street, a short walk to Fremantle’s ‘cappuccino strip’, and other attractions such as galleries, the Fremantle Markets, Fremantle Prison, gourmet dining, Bathers Beach, The Roundhouse and more. Each room combines luxurious comfort with smart TV’s, free Wi-Fi, tea and coffee making facilities, complimentary wine and Hors d’oeuvre’s for guests each weekday evening, personalised pillow menus, personal trainer on request, onsite parking and more. The hotel also has conference and meeting facilities.
Lifestyle and culture
Join the pilgrimage to Albany in November 2014
The international spotlight will be on Albany in WA’s South West in November 2014 when the historic and picturesque coastal city hosts the first in a series of commemorative and community events as the curtain raiser to the Anzac Centenary period. To honour the first ANZACs, a significant program of events is planned in Albany between October 30 and November 2, 2014. Albany played a key role in World War One as it was the final departure point for many Australian and New Zealand soldiers. A commemorative event program and community events are planned, along with the official opening of the Anzac Interpretive Centre at the Princess Royal Fortress. Albany is one hour by air from Perth or a four and a half-hour drive and boasts awe-inspiring coastline, stunning landscapes, and abundance of gourmet attractions with cosmopolitan cafes and bars, slow food, markets, wineries, olive oils, and organic produce.
New art at the Art Gallery of WA
The Art Gallery of WA, located in the Perth Cultural Centre just outside of Perth’s central business district, has opened a new exhibition of contemporary art acquisitions. IMPACT showcases a selection of the acquisitions to the State Art Collection with a focus on video works, together with sculpture, paintings and works on paper. It brings together internationally renowned filmic artists such as Jesper Just, Hale Tenger, Michael Snow and Richard Grayson with Australian artists engaging with sound and moving image aesthetics such as Gabriella and Silvana Mangano, Angelica Mesiti. It coincides with extended opening hours at the Gallery – during February, it will be open until 7pm, to coincide with the Fringe World Festival and the Perth International Arts Festival. Visitors can also take guided tours, see pop-up music performances, or visit the gallery shop and café.
Western Australia to be home to the country’s richest film prize
Western Australia will be home to Australia’s richest film prize next year with film festival CinéfestOZ offering a new $100,000 prize for an Australian feature film as part of its 2014 program. CinéfestOZ started in 2008 to celebrate the South West’s early exploration by the French and the strong film making cultures of both France and Australia. Held in the South West town of Busselton, CinéfestOZ will be held from August 20 to 24, 2014. Visitors can join filmmakers, film stars and film lovers for a five-day cultural adventure with the latest offerings from the Australian film world; a French film selection, and short films, documentaries, community screenings and more.
Degrees of Connection exhibition
Renowned West Australian artists Nadeen Lovell and Kimberley Kohan are exhibiting their Degrees of Connection works at Melbourne’s Tacit Gallery from February 26 until March 16. Degrees of Connection reflects the journeys of the two artists as they’ve experienced the world — across continents and time zones, seasons and cultures — being inspired by the windswept plains of Mongolia, the icebergs of the Antarctic and the tropical mystery of Madagascar, but mostly by the rugged majesty of WA’s North West — the Pilbara and the Kimberley.
Food and Wine
Perth food festivals in April and May
Next May will be a culinary feast in Perth, as two food and wine festivals happen across the city. The City of Perth will again host its annual month-long food and beverage celebration Eat Drink Perth from April 1 to 30, while Brand Events Australia will facilitate the inaugural Taste of Perth festival from May 1 to 5. Together, the events represent 36 days of food and wine activities
New chef at Cape Lodge
Michael Elfwing is the new Executive Chef at the multi-award winning Cape Lodge Restaurant, which is located in WA’s Margaret River Wine Region. Hailing from Sweden, Michael has worked for many years with legendary chef Cheong Liew at the celebrated Grange in Adelaide and has also done time at the world-famous Fat Duck restaurant with Heston Blumenthal, as well as at other European Michelin kitchens. Michael was handpicked by Cheong Liew to open his signature restaurant in Kuala Lumpur and has for the past five years been the creative force at Senses restaurant – recently nominated in the prestigious 2013 Pellegrino Top 50 restaurants in Asia. Michael’s culinary training is French and he enjoys molecular gastronomy, foraging and culinary interpretations of his Nordic heritage. Food and wine pairing is also a great passion for Michael who has completed his Professional Sommelier training certificate, and is a strong believer in using fresh local produce and creating seasonal menus that reflect a sense of place. As well as the restaurant, Cape Lodge also features 22 rooms and suites, a private luxury residence, tennis court and swimming pool, set among sprawling, manicured gardens.
A taphouse with a twist
Swings Taphouse & Kitchen is the latest bar and restaurant to open in Margaret River, in WA’s South West. On the town’s main street, the Taphouse & Kitchen is the latest edition to the Swings & Roundabouts family – a well-known winery in the region. Open from 10am daily, the venue serves brunch, lunch and dinner with Swings & Roundabouts wine available on tap, delivered by ‘sight glass fonts’ (a world first), and served by the glass, half carafe or carafe. There’s also a selection of ‘guest backyards’ wines, cocktails and beers, and the menu is simple and rustic, designed for sharing, and with an emphasis on fresh, local and sustainable produce.
Swan Valley food and wine festival
After the success of the inaugural event last year, the Valley and Vines festival will return in 2014. Held in the Swan Valley, WA’s oldest wine growing region and only a 25-minute drive from Perth, the festival will see wine lovers choose from four participating boutique venues (Ugly Duckling Wines, Jarrah Ridge Wines, Carilley Estate and Duckstein Brewery) with festival goers setting their own itinerary depending on their desire, tastes and interests. There will be a 90 minute ‘session’ at each location, with a 30 minute break in between each for travel. Each venue will offer its local choice of wine or beer, and have a variety of food and live entertainment on offer. The festival is on from Saturday April 5, from 11.00am to 4.30pm.
Manu Feildel and Stephanie Alexander added to Ord Valley Muster line-up
Celebrity chef and My Kitchen Rules judge Manu Feildel, and one of Australia’s great food educators, Stephanie Alexander will be heading to WA’s East Kimberley region in May as part of the Argyle Diamonds Ord Valley Muster. Manu, together with WA chef Don Hancey and special guest Stephanie Alexander, will host the Kimberley Kitchen on the banks of Lake Kununurra on May 21. Manu will have an A to Z of local ingredients at his fingertips, sourced from the region’s massive food bowl, showing guests how he incorporates this stunning local produce into his signature dishes. He will also host the exclusive long-table Durack Homestead Dinner held under the Kimberley night stars at the historic Durack homestead. Stephanie Alexander will conduct cooking demonstrations and food conversations on Sunday May 18 at the Moon Fair, and run garden-based workshops with children during the week. The festiva runs from May 16 to 25 and will feature more than 30 spectacular events across ten exciting days, including the Airnorth Kimberley Moon Experience with Eskimo Joe, The Waifs and John Williamson.
Tours, attractions and accommodation
Nature-based tourism boosted in Margaret River
Eco-tourism in the Margaret River region has been boosted with the opening of the redeveloped Wharncliffe Mill Bush Retreat in Bramley National Park. The upgraded retreat now includes four new lodge rooms, three new forest cottages and 44 bush caravan/camping sites. Wharncliffe Mill also offers a nature-play space and an Aboriginal-themed meeting place, with cultural learning experiences presented by Aboriginal guides. The $1.2 million redevelopment is part of the Naturebank program, which is a joint initiative between the Department of Parks and Wildlife and Tourism WA. Read the media release.
Travel package to experience the Margaret River Pro
As part of the 2014 Drug Aware Margaret River Pro, Bookshop Travel has created a travel package which will showcase the highlights of the event, along with the region’s food and wine experiences. The package is a 12-day tour, and includes surf lessons with some of Australia’s finest surfing instructors, VIP access to the event, and a series of exclusive behind-the-scenes food and wine experiences. The tour will be led by Carli Ratcliff, a keen surfer and food writer who is well acquainted with the region, and Carol Crenna – a bespoke travel specialist. The Drug Aware Margaret River Pro will be held at Margaret River’s Surfer’s Point from April 2 to 13 and is now part of the ASP World Championship Tour.
Ascott opens Citadines-Branded Residence in Perth
The Ascott Limited (Ascott) has launched its second Citadines Apart’hotel in Australia. The new Citadines St Georges Terrace Perth has opened following a $5.1 million and five-month refurbishment of the former Somerset St Georges Terrace Perth. Located in the heart of Perth’s central business district, the property has 85 studio and one-bedroom apartments, with fully equipped kitchen/kitchenette, living area’s and modern amenities such as complimentary WiFi, home entertainment system and flat screen TV. Contemporary art pieces by local artists Nick Stratham and Kyle Hughes are featured throughout the hotel.
Hot deal at Monkey Mia Dolphin Resort
Monkey Mia Dolphin Resort has some all-inclusive ‘hot deals’ currently on offer. The deals are for travel between now and March 31; then April 28 to June 30. A minimum three-night package includes accommodation in a beach side dolphin unit or garden villa, daily breakfast, lunch (one course with drinks), dinner (two courses with drinks), and drinks during ‘happy hour’. Rates are from $499 for adults, $249 for children (six to 12 years) and $125 for infants/toddlers (one to five). Located at Dolphin Beach in the heart of the World Heritage listed Shark Bay, Monkey Mia has attracted schools of dolphins to its tranquil shores daily for more than 40 years, with the area famous for its kilometres of secluded crystal blue waters and pristine beaches.
Faraway Bay opens season with one-off special
Remote wilderness retreat Faraway Bay, in WA’s Kimberley region, has been on the receiving end of a spectacular amount of rainfall, leading to an exclusive ‘end of wet season’ package deal. It’s believed the rains will produce incredible waterfalls, and potentially superb Barramundi fishing. New attractions at Faraway Bay in 2014 include a rustic handcrafted wood-fired pizza oven, roasts and fresh breads, plus a fully-inclusive scenic flight over King George Falls on journeys to and from Faraway Bay. The twin King George Falls is WA’s highest waterfall, which every guest of Faraway Bay experiences up close by boat, and now also by air. The package deal offers a 20 per cent discount on standard rates, plus complimentary resort accommodation overnight in either Kununurra or Darwin. It’s valid for bookings made before February 28 for visits taken before April 30, 2014 and packages start from $3,464 per person for three nights, fully inclusive of return air transfers ex-Kununurra, all gourmet meals and beverages, and all tours and activities. Faraway Bay is a unique wilderness retreat nestled on a rocky hilltop overlooking the Timor Sea
in the remote north Kimberley region, some 280 kilometres north-west of Kununurra.
Experience the waterfalls of the Kimberley
The Berkeley River Lodge in WA’s North West has released its ‘waterfall package’ for March and April. The lodge is the region’s newest remote luxury lodge, and the package includes four-night’s accommodation in a luxury villa, return scenic sea plane transfers from Kununurra, all gourmet meals and beverages, and tours such as waterfall river cruises, guided bush hikes, fishing adventures and beach/bush four-wheel-drive tours. The Kimberley was recently named as the number two destination to visit in 2014 in Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2014.
New eco accommodation in Margaret River
St Allard Eco Resort is a new resort located just ten minutes’ drive out of Margaret River in WA’s South West. Set against natural forest, St Allard Eco Resort offers six chalets and a lakeside restaurant, golf course, tennis court, paddle boats and peaceful nature walks.
Feature – The Perth Hills – a great day-trip destination
Scattered throughout the wide fertile ranges of the Darling Scarp and only 45 minutes east of Perth city centre, you’ll find the stunning scenery, meandering drives and vibrant villages that make up the Perth Hills. While the Hills are part of the city, visitors will find the region and its character townships exude a country charm and views that are simply astounding.
The world famous Bibbulmun Track starts in the hills stretching 1,000 kilometres from Kalamunda to Albany. The tree-lined village of Mundaring is one of the major towns of the Perth Hills and makes a wonderful day trip or weekender for visitors to the region. In town, you can stop off at the Mundaring Visitor Centre where you can learn about the history of the region and pick up a variety of maps highlighting the large amount of activities and attractions to be found. Just out of town you will find the vast water reserve of the Mundaring Weir and the Perth Hills Discovery Centre where you can learn about native flora and fauna. You can also picnic at any number of stunning parks in the area.
Kalamunda town centre is also particularly appealing, with its gift stores, character eateries and quaint village feel. Art, music and history play a big part here with several heritage building sites in town and the Zig Zag Cultural Centre, where visitors can learn more about the history, culture and attractions of the area. A visit to the town library will reward you with views of the largest community-built stained-glass window in Australia, and if you are visiting on the first Saturday of the month, be sure to drop in on the village market or on Sunday morning’s, the Kalamunda Farmers Markets are held, showcasing fresh produce from local farmers and growers.
Kalamunda is also a great staging point for visiting the breathtaking Bickley and Carmel Valleys renowned for their wine and local produce. Considering its Mediterranean climate of hot dry summers and cool wet winters, and with the first vineyards in the region planted in the 1880s, it comes as no surprise that the Perth Hills now boasts a well-established wine scene with each part of the hills having their own distinct wine trails for you to discover.
The Mundaring Hills Wine Trail will lead you through the forests and gullies of Darlington, Glen Forrest, Mt Helena and Wooroloo to some of the oldest wineries in the region and continuing further south, the Bickley-Carmel Valley Wine Trail touts seven wineries including some fine examples of sparkling wine made in the French tradition. Cellar doors are open most weekends and public holidays and you can set your tastebuds dancing with a good selection of wine varieties.
Visitors to the Perth Hills will also be impressed by the range of excellent restaurants and the level of sophisticated accommodation to be found. There are gracious country bed and breakfasts, spa retreats and private luxurious hideaways. While you’re in the Hills, try retreating to the national parks and the cool of the forests to indulge your love of the natural environment. The hills are blessed with a series of more than 40 bike and walk trails, as well as scenic lookouts and picnic spots.
Ten things to do in the Perth Hills
• Enjoy a picnic or barbecue, canoe or swim at Lake Leschenaultia
• Experience the beauty of the area’s national parks and State forests
• Get on the Munda Biddi Cycle Trail in Mundaring which winds through some spectacular scenery on its journey south
• Follow the Perth Hills Wine Trail to sample some local wines
• Explore the Mundaring Weir Precinct and No 1 Pump Station
• Browse through the region’s arts and crafts studios
• Take a guided spotlight tour at Karakamia Wildlife Sanctuary
• Get ‘Nearer to Nature’ with a range of outdoor activities at the Perth Hills Discovery Centre
• Walk the Railway Reserves Heritage Trail, KEP Track or world-famous Bibbulmun Track
• Learn more about the colourful history of the area at the District Museum.
LA doesn’t follow trends, it creates them. Whether it’s the opening of a hip hotel, ways to maintain a healthy lifestyle, or what’s being worn on and off the red carpet, it’s all very au courant. If you want to stay one-step ahead of the masses, turn your attention to what’s happening in the City of Angels.
Ace Hotel – (Downtown) — Part of a new hotel group out of Portland, Oregon, the newly-opened Ace Hotel Downtown Los Angeles is housed in the fabled United Artists building. Silent screen star and one of UA’s founders Mary Pickford had a penchant for ornate and gilded details, which provide a striking contrast against the hotel’s sleek amenities. The 180 guestrooms come in varying sizes simply categorized as Small, Medium, Large, Loft and Suite with an array of amenities. A 1,600-seat entertainment venue adds yet another element with live performances. The Ace is conveniently located in the revitalized Historic Core and near many landmarks and gems, including Grand Central Market, Walt Disney Concert Hall, and a throng of fabulous restaurants. www.acehotel.com/losangeles
The Line Hotel – (Koreatown) — Located at the corner of Wilshire Blvd. and Normandie Avenue in the heart of Koreatown, a fledgling hip destination brimming with restaurants and nightclubs, is the new Line Hotel. A collaboration by the Sydell Group along with noted chef Roy Choi, pioneer of the gourmet LA food truck movement, and the Houston Brothers, known for LA’s hippest bars and nightclubs, this mid-century marvel was originally designed by Daniel Mann Johnson + Mendenhall in 1964. Now, the use of industrial materials and cement surfaces, coupled with streamline furnishings and the occasional burst of color, adds a loft-like and urban feel behind closed doors. A sexy outdoor pool deck, pair of destination restaurants, a swank lobby bar, speakeasy lounge, karaoke bar and 24-hour room service make guests want for nothing. www.thelinehotel.com
LA’s “Artsy Blocks”
These three streets are collectively transforming the LA art scene.
North Highland Art Galleries – (Hollywood) — North Highland Avenue’s once blank canvas is now awash in a crop of new and emerging art galleries. Take Perry Rubenstein for instance. This NYC gallerist left the Big Apple for Tinseltown and opened his namesake LA outpost in a former film-supply warehouse. A permanent and rotating collection includes many LA artists, which is helping to further fuel the city’s ever-growing art scene. www.perryrubenstein.com. Just down the street is Regen Projects at the corner of Santa Monica Boulevard and Highland Avenue, which boasts some 20,000-square-feet of gallery space complete with a rooftop sculpture park – so very LA. www.regenprojects.com
Culver City Art District – (Culver City) — Powerhouse gallerists Blum + Poe may have single-handedly been responsible for the explosion of art galleries when they moved from their Santa Monica digs to Culver City not far from the gates of Sony Studios (formerly MGM). Now some three-dozen art galleries grace the streets of La Cienega and Washington Boulevards, including Katherine Cone and Nye + Brown. In between gallery hopping take a break at one of the many sidewalk cafes that surround this artsy enclave. www.ccgalleryguide.com
Gallery Row – (Downtown) — Located along Main and Spring Streets, between 2nd and 9th Streets, is what locals call Gallery Row. Lined with cutting-edge art galleries and home to the popular Downtown Art Walk, held on the second Thursday of every month, this area is exploding with creativity. What makes this neighborhood even more interesting, aside from the various installations and exhibits celebrated behind gallery doors, is the abundance of public art, from sculptures to street art, Downtown LA is like a gallery without walls. www.galleryrow.org’
Health + Wellness
Mother always said to eat your vegetables, but she might have been more successful in her quest had she suggested you drink them instead. And that’s what most of LA is doing these days by visiting their local juiceries. Sure – Angelenos still crave their non-fat macchiato no whip concoctions at local java junctions, but they can’t seem to get their fill of cold-pressed vegetable and fruit blends made with freshly-plucked kale, cilantro, celery, beets and spinach seasoned with lemon and cayenne pepper for some added kick.
The Punchbowl – (Los Feliz) —This juice joint features a menu of seasonal juices and smoothies made with some unusual suspects, such as dandelion, tarragon and grapefruit. The menu changes often and is dependent on available produce. www.thepubnchbowl.tumblr.com
Pressed Juicery – (Studio City) — Boasting several locations, including this one in the San Fernando Valley, Pressed Juicery is perhaps the rock star of juicing having been founded by a team of entertainment professionals. The shop’s six-pack samplers provide just the right amount of nourishment and variety plus some added convenience: home or office delivery. www.pressedjuicery.com
Sustain Juicery – (Downtown) — Not all juiceries are created equal, and here the staff puts the squeeze on various juicers – so not every fruit and veggie is pressed but it’s all made to order using organic produce. Daily specials are displayed on the chalkboard, and the staff fancies themselves more like bartenders than blender operators by presenting drinks in coupes rather than cups. www.sustainjuicery.com
Erewhon Natural – (Westside) — Tucked inside an organic market of the same name, Erwhon offers grab and go glass-bottled juices as well as made-to-order drinks, such as coconut Bulgarian rosewater, for a healthy thirst quenching experience. www.erewhonmarket.com
Raise a fork to the tasting menu where small portions of several dishes are served as a single meal. If you truly want to get a flavor (pun intended) for what’s taking place behind the kitchen door, the tasting menu is your palate’s portal what’s happening in the back of the house. Specially priced three-course menus are on full display each winter and summer at over 300 restaurants in the city during dineLA’s Restaurant Week. Catch the next Restaurant Week July 14 – 25, 2014.
Allumette – (Echo Park) — Located in the heart of Echo Park, Allumette is a comfy dinner restaurant that serves soulful, rigorous, original food and food-friendly cocktails and wine. After launching a successful pop-up in 2012, 25-year-old Chef Miles Thompson creates an intimate dining experience featuring a two tasting experiences each evening. A four-course for $45 and a five-course for $60. Delicately plated dishes include Gnochetti with Wood Pigeon Ragu and Fried Green Tomato with soft egg and pea tendrils. www.allumettela.com
Alma – (Downtown) — When you’re lauded as the Best New Restaurant in America – 2013 by Bon Appetit, you better live up to the hype. Not only does Alma live up to this accolade (and many more it has received), it surpasses. The restaurant’s prix fixe menu is inspired by ingredients harvested in its nearby Flower Avenue garden as well as those acquired from local purveyors. The result, a pair of nightly tasting menus, one five courses the other a tad longer, with optional beverage pairings and bragging rights to having dined here. www.alma-la.com
Orso & Winston – (Downtown) — Chef Josef Centeno, who is the darling of LA’s dining scene of late, offers up a tasting menu-only retreat at this Downtown destination. The menu changes frequently, but includes five or eight courses with optional wine pairings. A recent sampling included coddled egg with sherry whipped cream and pancetta, pork loin, and a pear ricotta cake. Four-course family-style dinners have a tasting menu feel only with larger portions. www.orsoandwinston.com
Trois Mec – (Hollywood) —Trois Mec, which means three guys in French, is currently the hottest ticket in town…literally. Guests don’t make a reservation, they purchase a ticket much in the same way a ticket is bought for a sporting event. And, trust us: This restaurant is a culinary game changer. Only the best ingredients are sourced in order to present a spectacular and memorable single choice five-course menu. www.troismec.com
Fashion + Style
Who says LA is mono-seasonal? Sure, it feels like spring most of the time but there is also Awards Season and that’s when the fashion kicks into high gear. Everyone is on style watch, and for 2014 a few trends have emerged fresh from the runway as well as the red carpet. Orange really is the new black. This eye-popping hue is being applied to lips (bah-bye red), cropping up on ready-to-wear togs, gracing chic handbags, and accenting colorful heels and wedges. Midriffs are the must-haves for the New Year with bandeau tops exposing toned abs and designers discovering that less really is more. As for the skinny on pants and trousers, wide-legs are the word in fashion. Think Katherine Hepburn or Greta Garbo: billowy silhouettes, higher waists, elongated torsos, and a nod to Hollywood’s Golden Age. For fashionable finds, check out The Grove on LA’s Westside at 3rd and Fairfax www.thegrovela.com, The Fashion District in Downtown LA www.fashiondistrict.org or the Beverly Center on La Cienega www.beverlycenter.com
Working out in Los Angeles is the equivalent of sleeping or breathing – it’s just a natural function of the human body. But like fashion and food, fitness is all about the latest and greatest innovations, techniques and style. Sure, old-school methods, such as lifting weights or jumping rope, still burn calories but you’re more likely to break a sweat (and smile, too) if you give one of these newer fitness finds a shot.
Millennium Dance Complex – (San Fernando Valley) — If you want to get that Dancing With The Stars kind of feeling and workout, head to this A-list dance emporium for 90 minutes of non-stop moving. This is where Britney Spears, Janet Jackson and JLo all come when they need to get their dance on in order to prepare for their next tour. www.millenniumdancecomplex.com
Kinetic Cycling – (Westside) — Take spinning to the next level with this indoor and inspirational workout. Using state-of-the-art audio and visuals with images of the World Cup or Tour de France projected on a big screen, each ride is based on inspiration. No matter what your ability, newbie or serious cyclist, you are definitely in the driver’s seat. Best of all you can take Kinetic Cycling for a test drive – first class is free. www.kineticcycling.com
Crunch – (West Hollywood) — It’s where the A-list get fit, but if you can abstain from stargazing you’re going to kick-it into high gear with Buti. A blend of yoga, strength training and tribal dance moves, Buti is a one-stop sweat shop for some serious cardio. In 75- minutes go from flab to fab doing squats, hip openers and warrior poses to some pulsating tunes. www.crunch.com
Marina Paddle – (Venice) — In LA everyone seems to be asking “what’s SUP” as in Stand Up Paddling, the latest water workout since hanging ten. This core workout puts participants on top, or at least on top of a buoyed board, with an oar to help navigate the ocean, back bays and marinas. It’s fun and simple to master offering and, best of all, it takes place in the great outdoors. www.venicepaddleboards.com
Big Gay Ice Cream to Open in Downtown Los Angeles’
New York’s Big Gay Ice Cream is slated to open in downtown Los Angeles this spring, in what will be the company’s largest location yet. Staple menu items like the signature Bea Arthur cone (vanilla soft serve, dulce de leche and crushed Nila wafers) and the Salty Pimp (chocolate-dipped ice cream cones) will join exclusive LA flavors that take advantage of the city’s fresh, local ingredients. Big Gay Ice Cream will open in the Historic Core, a burgeoning area made up of the newly opened Ace Hotel and soon to be outfitted by Urban Outfitters, Aesop, Tanner Goods and Acne.
The Cultural Landscape Foundation Announces a New Season of Garden Dialogues – Exclusive Access to Beautiful Gardens, their Owners & DesignersMarch 13, 2014 on 11:44 am | In California, East Coast, Florida, Outdoors | Comments Off
Third Season – One of TCLF’s Most Popular Programs – Events in CA, CT, DC, DE, FL, IL, KY, MA, ME, MN, NY, OR, RI, TX, VA & WA – Toronto & Vancouver in Canada
Washington, DC (February 27, 2014) – What’s Out There Garden Dialogues, a national program inaugurated in 2012 by The Cultural Landscape Foundation (TCLF) that offers exclusive access to some of today’s most beautiful and innovative gardens, and the opportunity to learn about the creative process from the garden designers and their clients, will run March 15 through October 5, 2014 in fifteen states and the District of Columbia – and in Toronto and Vancouver in Canada. Garden Dialogues has become one of the most popular programs in the foundation’s 16-year history, with most Dialogues sold out weeks in advance. The 2014 Garden Dialogues will begin in March in Houston, TX, Miami, Palm Beach and Florida’s Gulf Coast. Additional sites will be posted mid-March. The program provides a distinct look at gardens and enables participants to hear firsthand about the collaborative process that led to the creation of each garden. Space is limited and nearly all Garden Dialogues are $45.00 each. Seibert & Rice Fine Italian Terra Cotta is the Garden Dialogues National Sponsor.
How do garden owners and their landscape architects or designers work together to create a great garden? Garden Dialogues brings together patrons and designers to reveal the creative process and the collaboration that yields a great garden. Garden Dialogues provides unique opportunities for small groups to experience some of today’s most beautiful gardens created by some of the most accomplished designers currently in practice.
Detailed Schedule for March 2014:
Houston, TX – tours follow Docomomo’s US National Symposium, March 13-15
March 16 (Register Today) – Selden Straus House – Keiji Asakura, Asakura Robinson (host) – Nestled within 25 heavily-wooded acres in the heart of the city, this Modernist home is occupied by its original owner, Mrs. Marjorie Selden Milby. In 1951 J.T. Rather, Jr. of Staub and Rather Architects designed the house, grounds and interiors with ample input from Mrs. Milby. Famed Modernist landscape architect Tommy Church visited in the 1950s and paid it a very high compliment -he saw nothing he thought should be changed. Over the years, notable horticulturalists including Lynn Lowery, John Teas and Charles Tapley have been involved with the property, but it retains its original design intent.
March 16 (Register Today) – River Oaks Modernist Estate – Gail Hartz, Gail Hartz & Associates, Inc. – Hidden behind a privet and azalea hedge on a busy thoroughfare in River Oaks is a remarkable mid-20th century International Style brick home by Houston architect Hugo Victor Neuhaus Jr. and grounds by Houston landscape architect C.C. “Pat” Fleming, in collaboration with Neuhaus. As part of the home’s recent restoration, Gail Hartz is expanding the outdoor living areas and garden, while remaining faithful to the original Fleming design.
March 16 (Register Today) – Raymond and Susan Brochstein Pavilion at Rice University – Chip Trageser and Andrew Albers, Office of James Burnett, with Stephen Fox, Architectural Historian, Anchorage Foundation of Texas – Rice’s Central Quadrangle has been transformed into the university’s social center, with the addition of 6,000-square-foot Brochstein Pavilion by architect Thomas Phifer & Partners and a 10,000-square-foot covered outdoor terrace and garden by the Office of James Burnett. The terrace is covered with decomposed granite and planted with a grid of 48 Allée lacebark elms. Two low, linear fountains define the space under the canopy and movable seating accommodates impromptu gatherings of students and faculty. Additional plantings of live oaks and improved pedestrian paths reinforce the existing framework of the Quadrangle and the campus’s Beaux Arts plan.
Miami-Palm Beach, FL
March 15 (Register Today) – Biscayne Bay Water Garden – Margie Ruddick of Margie Ruddick Landscape Design – Rare and exclusive! We can’t show images because this is a very private residence, but it’s amazing. Ruddick, a recent winner of the Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt Design Award for landscape design, created an island retreat that begins with a fantastical landscape of royal palms and lush tropical plantings centered on an environmental artwork. There are two wild gardens leading to the bay – and a luxurious swimming pool in a water garden, with floating terraces. Attendees must adhere to a no photography or video policy for this event.
March 22 (Register Today) – Palm Beach Residence – Keith Williams of Nievera Williams Landscape Architecture – This elegant and exotic British West Indies style estate was an empty lot just two years ago. The home has three gardens that feature tropical, drought-tolerant plants rich in texture, color and foliage, with an emphasis on sustainability. The front garden has succulents and uses minima instead of lawn, the back garden allows for entertaining, dining and swimming, while the “secret garden” – which the owners consider an intimate work of art – fulfills the quest to see a garden from every first floor window and door.
March 29 (Register Today) – The Breakers Palm Beach – Gregory Lombardi of Gregory Lombardi Landscape Design with Danny Miller, General Manager – One North Breakers Row – A spectacular resort destination on Florida’s Atlantic coast and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, The Breakers Palm Beach has lured generations of discerning travelers to its idyllic, Italian-Renaissance setting. Gregory Lombardi Design has been honored to work with The Breakers since 2005 on its landscape revitalization and expansion initiative, redesigning key areas and collaborating with The Breakers’ team to preserve, conserve and restore the prevalence of native plants throughout the resort property.
March 30 (Register Today) – Coconut Grove – Oak Garden at Silver Bluff – Carlos Somoza of Carlos Somoza Landscape Design – Perched atop an ancient limestone ridge, Oak Garden was created beneath the canopy of two-dozen, mature Southern Live Oak trees. There are three distinct rooms: entrance garden, secret garden and pool terrace, each featuring a distinct plant palette and character, with drifts of native flora and subtropical vegetation. A deep sea colored garden wall clad in slabs of iridescent Macedonian labrodite with Chinese dragon fountainheads designed by the client transforms when illuminated, and the affect suggests sunlight shimmering on peacock feathers.
Florida Gulf Coast
March 22 (Register Today) – Boca Grande – Shell House Garden with Mrs. Dorrance Hamilton – Mary Ellen Flanagan of MEF Design – In a neighborhood of restored “Cracker” cottages in downtown Boca Grande, Mrs. Dorrance Hamilton, doyenne of the Philadelphia Flower Show and botanical super enthusiast, has an idyllic and lush waterfront hideaway densely planted with large Tree ferns, unique palms, succulents and orchids. Nestled within are seating areas that offer friends and family places to luxuriate and relax. This Dialogue will also include a visit to the “production garden” at one of the owner’s guesthouses. The property, located on the canal, has a low-maintenance landscape with several citrus trees, papaya and avocado trees, as well as a small vegetable garden that she tends herself. This is a special fundraiser and tickets are $100 each.
March 23 (Register Today) – Boca Grande – Ruettgers Garden – Mary Ellen Flanagan of MEF Design – One block from the ocean on the tree-lined and appropriately named Banyan Street, the luxurious backdrop for photos of newlyweds and family gatherings, is a historic cottage with an exuberant collection of tropical plants. Though city-sized, the property also includes sculpture, a pergola, a lap pool, and an antique cistern. Unique to this garden is collection of vines and myriad potted plants the owner selects herself.
March 29 (Register Today) – Sarasota – Casey Key Pagoda Garden – Michael Gilkey, Jr. of Michael A. Gilkey, Inc. with Joe Jannopoulo of Synergy Building – This enchanting 1.2-acre landscape, surrounded on three sides by water, is both a private retreat and a perfect place to entertain. Pathways meander through thematic gardens – Arbor, Bamboo, Chinese, Conservatory, Edible and Rose – and Moon Gates frame views to Blackburn Bay. This South Florida idyll, a close collaboration between the landscape architect and its world-traveling patrons, allows visitors to experience a beautiful and imaginative Chinese-style garden, without all the jet lag.
About The Cultural Landscape Foundation (TCLF)
The Cultural Landscape Foundation (TCLF) is a 15-year-old non-profit foundation that provides people with the ability to see, understand and value landscape architecture and its practitioners, in the way many people have learned to do with buildings and their designers. Through its Web site, lectures, outreach and publishing, TCLF broadens the support and understanding for cultural landscapes nationwide to help safeguard our priceless heritage for future generations. TCLF makes a special effort to heighten the awareness of those who impact cultural landscapes, assist groups and organizations working to increase the appreciation and recognition of cultural landscapes, and develop educational tools for young people to better connect them to their cultural landscape environs.
The images will be used to incorporate remote places into the Street View of Google maps, Sydney Morning Herald reported.
The pictures gathered will be incorporated into Street View later this year once they have been edited using special software that stitches them together and blurs individual faces.
“We’re starting in Sydney and then looking to go across Australia,” Google spokesperson Shane Treeves said.
”Hopefully it will encourage more people to jump on a plane.”
Google hopes to allow tourism groups, not for profit groups, universities and research teams to borrow Trekker in future.
Trekker has been all over the world to create images for Street View including the Galapagos Islands, Venice, Mt Fuji, Everest and the Grand Canyon.
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