Don’t Forget to Check Out Levantine Hill on Your Trip to Victoria

Levantine Hill is a breath of fresh air in the heart of the Yarra Valley. The skyrocketing curved roof of the dining establishment and cellar door show up from the road, in sync with the rolling hills near Coldstream. The sculptural building, held up by spans of glass, was designed by designer Karl Fender of Fender Katsalidis, with interiors by Anja de Medspa of Molecule Architecture. Three giant barrel-shaped cubicles protrude from one side. They keep an eye out over the grape vines and the surrounding green hills. Levantine Hill includes a vineyard with well recognised Levantine Hill wines, two dining spaces with food by Teage Ezard, a bar and a cellar door.

It is the vision of one man translated by Fender, the multi-award winning designer. That male is Elias “Eli” Jreissati, Melbourne residential or commercial property designer, self-made millionaire, and creator of the Bensons Property Group, art collector and philanthropist. Almost a year after the dining establishment and cellar door opened, Eli is still like a kid, excited about this latest addition to the 103-hectare estate that includes a truffle grove and homestead. He likes the wine-barrel booths, the bar with angled brass trim that deflects sound and the way the space can be expanded by moving a basic shelving unit.

“I understood Karl Fender was the man to create it,” he states with a sweeping gesture across the space. For Karl, the result is “quite the vision we jointly had”. “I’m pleased people like it which it melds with the landscape and is of its place,” he says. “The structure, in one sense, had to be observed from the highway. It needed to be a greater, more obvious piece of architecture, but it was so engaging to make it a place of repose inside. “When the customer decided to pursue it, the obstacle was to perform it and make the constructed outcome measure up to the vision.”

Anja de Medspa, one of Molecule’s 3 creators, was included from the beginning. Coming from an architecture background rather than design training, Anja turned her academic mind to products and function and the zoning of the space to preserve views in between all locations, but permitting everyone to work separately. She did this, in part, by selecting the best home furnishings and by zoning the space. “There is the cellar and bar, the all-day dining and the signature restaurant. Each has its own different location and they are divided by a transparent, moveable unit,” she says.

The brass detail on the bar is a crucial element. The brass is “pleated” in a manner that is nearly reminiscent of the contours of the original landscape design. It is repeated from the tasting bar right through to the service bars. “In the dining establishment space we wanted to create a more intimate and luxurious environment, so the flooring there has a big carpet,” Anja says. Having dealt with Eli on his homestead way up at the top of the hill, Anja was influenced by the local flower symbols such as the kangaroo paw that appears in the printed material in the upholstered dining establishment chairs.

The palette of tan leather, teal and dark green consists of tabletops of regional hardwood and rather a great deal of black in the steel frames of the chairs and tables. Timber also includes in the main bar. The area had actually never ever been built on before and Karl Fender wanted the building to connect with the fields, the vineyards and the beautiful mountains. The idea has to do with putting the structure in a proper context so that it feels and look as if it belongs and suits the existing landscaping design. Inside, there is more place-making by association. The place is decorated with giant wine barrels that are lined internally and externally with wood, giving you the feeling of being cosy, having an intimate dining experience and a view of the vineyard. “They really came as a doubt,” Fender says. A fortunate reservation, as it ends up, since diners almost always wish to sit in a barrel.

Melbourne: It Has Everything

Sporting capital of Australia, nationwide cultural capital, and world’s most liveable city – Melbourne uses lots of hats, and with great reason. Within the city and its surroundings lies a world of sports, wine, and all the other good stuff. Here’s a convenient overview of the Melbourne Must-dos.

The Melbourne Cricket Ground – “The G”
It’s the world’s biggest cricket ground; however it’s a lot more than that. Take a tour of the stadium, stroll the hallowed halls of the picture gallery (which includes the picture of Sachin Tendulkar and Sir Donald Bradman). While there, step into cricketing history at the National Sports Museum, and walk through Australia’s finest collection of sporting heritage.

Queen Victoria Market
For fresh food, unique gifts and endless deals, the renowned Queen Victoria Market has everything. Eat, shop, check out and discover your way through the food halls and heritage sheds where the small talk is as fresh as the fruit and vegetables. Or simply absorb the atmosphere of potentially the largest al fresco market in the southern hemisphere.

Premiums and gastronomy
Melbourne prides itself on its fresh prepared meals, and the city’s range of dining options is statement to its culinary track record. You could start with MasterChef host George Calombaris’ Press Space, which produces a creative Greek menu. Or book ahead for award-winning fine-dining dining establishments – think about Attica, among the world’s 50 best dining establishments, and delve into Ben Shewry’s special menu. Dine at Flower Drum, Vue de Monde or taste knock-out tapas at the original MoVida in Hosier Lane.

Walk through the history
Spend a long time in the city centre and you’ll discover it’s nicely divided into little pockets for you to explore. Navigate Melbourne on foot with an expert strolling guide. Take in a heritage path, see well known street art in the narrow alleys and laneways of the CBD, or take your camera on a night-time photography tour. Melbourne slopes extremely carefully down to the bay, so you can bike your method to shops and cafes or through the Yarra River’s parks and gardens without developing excessive of a sweat.

Coffee culture
Melbourne is the coffee capital of Australia. In the CBD, the cobblestoned laneways are filled with the aroma of espresso originating from a myriad of breakfast restaurant spots. At the city’s best cafes, professional baristas will talk beans and machines while tending to your brew. Specialty roasters are emerging quicker than ever and the majority of the very best coffee shops offer their provider’s coffee, so it’s easy to bag in your area roasted beans to take home. Watch out for local favourites Padre, Seven Seeds, St Ali, Five Senses and Di Bella.

Colonial Tramcar Restaurant
What’s glossy, burgundy and dispense terrific meals (apart from the Hogwarts Express)? Melbourne’s Colonial Tramcar Dining establishment, of course! Cruise through the city streets in the lap of heritage while drinking Australian wine and tucking into a delicious seasonal menu aboard the world’s first travelling tramcar restaurants. The atmosphere is cosy, the service friendly and the design as inviting as the colonial duration these cable cars show.

Yarra Valley
An hour from Melbourne’s CBD lays a range of wineries in the yarra valley. The change of the landscape – from slick streets to vines and mountain ash forests, is poetic. Domaine Chandon, the Australian winery of French Champagne’s huge Moet & Chandon, is a popular stop. Even if you’re not an addict of sparkling wine, the homage is worth it, for the Green Point Brasserie does fresh, seasonal fare to opt for the wines and views.

Support nature on Phillip Island
A 90-minute drive from Melbourne, every verb you utilize to describe your experience on this Island, with its diverse wildlife and outdoorsy way of life falls under variations of the verb “to interest.” Have a close encounter with penguins, get week-kneed over nests of fur-seals, or observe animals romping in their natural environment without being caged or included.

Sovereign Hill, the museum with a distinction
If museums were classified, Sovereign Hill would fall under the category of “vibrant.” Set in what used to be a gold-picking location, this al fresco neighbourhood museum is deeply entrenched in gold-rush history. Be it interacting with the dressed-up actors, panning for gold in the Red Hill Gully Creek – peppered with great alluvial gold – or taking a horse-drawn carriage around town, the Sovereign Hill experience sweeps you in.

Own down the Great Ocean Roadway
Running along the Southern Ocean, the Great Ocean Road is a tantalising strip of tar that takes the wonderstruck chauffeur along substantial cliffs, raving browse, relaxing bays, stunning beaches and rich forests. It has wonderful straights with stunning ocean views, as well as curved areas. After forests and pastures the eyes are treated to that many well known traveller destination of the Great Ocean Roadway – the renowned Twelve Apostles, the remains of an extended cliff line that has actually been crafted into stacks of rock by the continuous pounding of the sea and the abrasive caress of salt packed winds. The best way to see them all is to book a helicopter trip, and drink in the sight of the Apostles as well the surrounding rock formations.

French Wine Giant Advini Buys Seven Bordeaux Wineries

Antoine Moueix Propriétés, a subsidiary of French wine powerhouse Advini, has actually acquired 7 Bordeaux estates from the Lapalu and Blasco households in the Médoc and Haut-Médoc, including Châteaus Liversan, Patache d’Aux and D’Hanteillan, for an overall of 618 acres under vine. The business now manages 988 acres, or 7 percent of Bordeaux’s Cru Bourgeois annual volume, for a production of 150,000 cases. “When thinking about the Left Bank, we believe that consumers will probably discover the best quality-to-price ratio among the Cru Bourgeois,” stated Thibaut de la Haye, director of Antoine Moueix Propriétés.

The wines will continue to be dispersed by Advini, an openly traded business with $250 million in turnover, in which the JeanJean family owns 46 percent. Advini manages approximately 6,000 acres of vineyards in several French areas. “Because we manage distribution, we can likewise guarantee that our suppliers and Yarra Valley wine importers won’t face cost disposing, which often happens on the Place de Bordeaux during hard vintages,” included de la Haye.

In addition to an unique circulation contract, Antoine Moueix had actually likewise acquired a little equity stake in the Lapalu household estates some time earlier. Without a younger generation to continue the family’s ownership, the sale to Antoine Moueix supplied an “easy way for them to turn the page,” said de la Haye. In a different transaction, Catherine Blasco sold the company Château D’Hanteillan, which employs Stéphane Derenoncourt as speaking with wine maker. D’Hanteillan is an increasing star in the Cru Bourgeois line up, and retails for $16.

De la Haye, a longtime Advini executive, discussed that the Cru Bourgeois estates supplied an opportunity to broaden in quality Bordeaux locations, keeping in mind that the acquisition of a Bordeaux “classified-growth is extremely made complex. We face insurance companies and magnates.” With the Cru Bourgeois’ track record for better quality and a strong presence in the United States market and the Yarra Valley wineries, de la Haye stated it made good sense to invest in a classification that permits the consumer to differentiate from the huge selection of petits châteaus on the marketplace.

The acquisitions include: Châteaus Patache d’Aux (AOC Médoc) and Plagnac (AOC Médoc) in Begadan; Châteaus Liversan (AOC Haut-Médoc), Lieujean (AOC Haut-Médoc) and Fonpiqueyre (AOC Haut-Médoc) in St.-Sauveur; Château D’Hanteillan (AOC Haut Médoc) in Cissac; Château Lacombe Noaillac (AOC Médoc) in Jau Dignac et Loirac; and Château Leboscq (AOC Médoc) in St.-Christoly.

The buyers plan to begin buying 2017 at one of the flagship estates, Château Patache d’Aux. “The wine is already excellent, however we can enhance it,” said de la Haye. “The soil is incredible. We have to enhance the vinification centers. For instance, we can’t do pigéage [punch-downs] in the existing vats, and for some vintages, we wish to have the ability to do pigéage.”


Three Best Light House Accommodation In Australia

apollo bay accommodation

Cape Otway, Victoria
Set against the geological drama of the Great Ocean Road and the rain forest of Great Otway National Park is the earliest lighthouses on the mainland. Built in 1848, Cape Otway Lighthouse is the spot for magnificent clifftop vistas and a huge dosage of history, if you are looking for something different to Lorne Accommodation. Not only has it long been a beacon of security on the treacherous Victorian coast, however it was central to the advancement of telegraph interactions in Australia and did time as a conveyor of radar tricks throughout World War II. The site features a museum in the previous telegraph station, a coffee shop, the old radar bunker, a native cultural centre and 3 heritage homes that can accommodate groups of approximately 16.

Troubridge Island, South Australia
3 hours’ drive from Adelaide, on a sandy shoal in St Vincent Gulf, stands a lighthouse that resembles something from a fairy tale. The 160-year old Troubridge Island lighthouse was the very first in Australia made of cast iron, shipped out in pieces from Britain and put together by cranes in South Australia. Troubridge is a leading spot for twitchers– it’s a breeding place for black-faced cormorants and crested terns and is the home of a large colony of little penguins. Visitors have actually become fans of resident seal Sammy, who prefers to sun himself on the close-by beach. The heritage-listed lighthouse keepers’ cottage can accommodate up to 12.

Low Head Pilot Station, Tasmania
A long distance away from Apollo Bay accommodation, North of Launceston and overlooking the Bass Strait is Low Head Pilot Station and historic precinct– and exactly what a pretty sight it is, with its candy-striped lighthouse and cluster of historic buildings. Low Head’s destinations include Australia’s 3rd earliest light station, a museum, nests of little blue and fairy penguins plus sandy beaches. Visitors are spoiled for option with accommodation: there are 9 brought back 19th-century cottages appropriate for groups of up to 9. Low Head’s fog horn, said to be the only one of its kind still operating on the planet, booms out each Sunday at noon, and the nearby 170km Tamar Valley Wine Route takes in 32 vineyards.

Have You Done These On The Great Ocean Road?

  1. Lorne

Lorne is a stunning town located right on the Great Ocean Road and was our favourite town to stay in, in some great Lorne accommodation along the journey. It has a certain beauty with terrific coffee shops, special stores, galleries and Otway National Park is on your doorstep. Lorne is only 140 kilometres south of Melbourne and this restaurant swells with people over the Christmas holidays. Take pleasure in a walk on the beach, a bike ride along the foreshore out to the pier, have a coffee at Lorne Beach Pavilion and get a hamburger from The Bottle of Milk– delicious! We stayed at the Mantra Apartments which were incredible and right on the beach.

romantic getaways

  1. Teddys Lookout

A brief drive up the hill behind Lorne is Teddys Lookout. Drive up to the picnic area at the end of George Street and stroll a short range to enjoy the magnificent views of the Great Ocean Road from the lookout. There’s a 45-minute walk you can do here.

  1. The Lorne – Apollo Bay Drive

Our preferred stretch of road was from Lorne to Apollo Bay. Be prepared to take a lot of photos. This stretch of road has a few of the most picturesque scenery in the region. The Great Ocean Road hugs the cliff-face as it winds through the Great Otway National Park and rolling farmland.

  1. Apollo Bay Eco Hostel

Apollo Bay is completely placed about half-way along the Great Ocean Road and surrounded by Otway National Park State Forest and acres of green farmland. Trying to find an inexpensive and family-friendly location to stay? The Apollo Bay YHA Eco Hostel was a charming location to base ourselves for a couple of days. Extremely relaxing ambiance with terrific kitchen facilities, lounge spaces and a roof deck to delight in a sunup. This is not a party hostel, no YHA homes are, and we met a great deal of good families and solo tourists here who were just after peaceful Apollo bay accommodation.

How to Meet People when Traveling Alone?

You know, I think the most important benefit about traveling is not the city or country that is discovered, but the friends with whom you share these moments. These are the people around us that make the experience better or sometimes worse. But what if you travel alone?


Of course, the obvious answer is to make friends

The problem is that for many people it is very difficult to make friends only once on the road, and out of their little comfort zone. The trips have taught me to become much more open and sociable in everyday life and to go towards other people. I got through it meet lots of great people and live totally unexpected. Some of these meetings were even transformed into lasting friendships. Today I would like to give you some tips on how to meet people and make friends when traveling alone. I will list you specifically a couple of lessons I’ve learned during my travels.

  • Forget all your preconceived ideas
    This is the best advice I can give you. Many people start with countless  false reasons by which they could not do certain things. They feel too old (or too young, too timid, etc.) to try and do this or that. I have often heard this phrase: “I’ll never go to a hostel because it’s filled with teenagers”. Many of the tips I am about to enumerate here appear also perhaps for the younger of you but I’m used to making friends from 18 to 70 years! So do not put a barrier of this type in your friendships. You can always learn something from everyone you meet, whatever their age is.

  • Stay in a hostel
    When traveling alone, hostels are undoubtedly the best place to meet people. I can assure you  they are filled with people of very different ages. You always fall naturally on the cliché of the young fighter in full world tour . But you will also come across families who choose to go traveling on a budget. The little secret to remember about hostels is that they often offer single rooms. This way you are staying as in the hotel while enjoying the benefits of living in the community clean hostels. Now, we must also learn a little upstream before booking. I remember during my trip to Dublin I was going through the Hostel Bookers website to see what people thought of a particular place. The one that had received the best critics was in a place I never knew and whose atmosphere was really great. Generally, you will find very detailed reviews and true to life.
  • Use your favorite hobby to meet peopletrekking
    A site like MeetUp can be a very good tool. You will find many groups formed around a single passion, a sport or other activity. So if you’re a fan of trekking  you can  easily find a local group for the practice. One of the fastest ways to meet new people is to share the same passion.