Terrific Trev fancied some R&R over the Labour Day long week-end, so off we went to the fabulous Escarpment Retreat, which is next but one to St Bernard's Hotel on "Mount" Tamborine.
St Bernard's is a scene-stealer itself. This grand old hotel has been a local land-mark since 1898. In it's accommodation-based hay-day in the 20's it boasted a tennis court, a large swimming pool fed by a creek, walks to visit the five local waterfalls, and extensive gardens on the edge of the escarpment - all perched right on the cliffs with a view north-east to the Gold Coast and islands of Moreton Bay.
I remember family day trips up to Tamborine when I was a child, with St Bernard's the destination for lunch: a choice of roasts, with vanilla ice-cream and caramel sauce to follow... such were the heights of culinary sophistication in Queensland in the early 60's. But served up by maids in uniform on fine china, silver cutlery and starched white tablecloths.
The Gallery Walk on the Long Road is an eclectic mix of dress shops, galleries, craft and nick-nacks, with a variety of eateries, brewery, wine cellar, a cheese factory, and a couple of hum-dinger ethnicentric pit-stops including the (German) Cuckoo Clock Nest and the Dutch Bite Cafe and Clog Place. I love a genuine Black Forrest cuckoo clock and a bit deft china along with the best of them...Tamborine is a bit like that; all oblique if not downright obvious references to a vague Continental heritage. The Tamborine Mountain Teapot Shop features some pretty wild creations imported from England; the Polish Place serves up food, drink and objects d'art in the Polish tradition. When I was a student we used to drive up to savour coffee in a brass kettle and a potato and bacon hash at the long-gone Swedish Cafe, with it's blue and yellow flag painted roof, when IKEA was just a twinkle in someone's flat-packing eye.
We wined, dined and did some gentle trekking to make up for it all - the non-leech-infested Sky Walk for one (someone mentioned the 'L' word to TT), and the Curtis Falls track for another, the latter setting off from one of the prettiest picnic grounds in s-e Queensland.
All in all, a fabulous retreat...and just slightly la-la land enough to be great fun!
Have great weeks!