Falling in Love

With New Plymouth….

This reviewer/blogger really touched me with their enthusiasm for the little part of the world that I’ve made my new home.

https://www.danflyingsolo.com/new-plymouth-taranaki-activities/

NewPlymouth-40-1030x580image courtesy of Dan Flying Solo

“New Plymouth is without a doubt my favourite city in Aotearoa.”

“slowly but surely New Plymouth got under my skin, and to my surprise, found it’s way to my heart.”

“If there were more work opportunities in a city that holds around 2% of New Zealand’s population, and only welcomes around 2% of the country’s international tourists, I would likely have settled down some roots for a while.”

https://www.danflyingsolo.com/taranaki-things-to-do-video/


I get quite emotional reading and hearing others views of this region that I now call home…

I love hearing about guest’s experiences, bumping into them in town during their stay (happens most often when our dog Weston is being naughty in the park or on the beach, or when Rod and I steal away for a wine at the Hour Glass.)  It always reminds me of how we fell in love with this place.  Rod, from being away for 10+ years, and seeing the town transform from his days in Stratford, and for me, seeing the balance of vibrancy and calmness.  I knew we could find beauty here, little did I know we could make our dream of owning the House our reality.  Goosebumps!

Our region

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“a scenic, gastronomic and artistic haven”

Ever since Taranaki was voted as the one of the top places in the world to visit in 2017 (number 2 to be exact) we have had many eyes on our beloved place.  It’s great to see the press experience just what we and our guests love about this amazing region.

http://www.stuff.co.nz/travel/destinations/nz/88343648/

Sharing

As I mainly work at home, for and by myself… I am always looking for ways that I can connect with fellow small business owners.

I’ve joined some groups of fellow B&B owners on Facebook and really enjoy being able to bounce ideas off of this very professional group, many of them in the Northern Hemisphere.

The topic of blogging came up recently, and I was able to view some of their blogs….I’ve fallen in love with this one:

http://oldesquareinn.com/blog/

 

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Photo courtesy of the Old Square Inn

I just need to meet Nancy, the Owner and Innkeeper of the Old Square Inn B&B in Lancaster Pennsylvania.  I want to visit her kitchen and have a wee dram of Cranberry, Orange Vodka and just share a bit of the goss about this great industry….

 

Well done Nancy!

Wooohooo!

booking-com2016

For the second year, we are so excited to be recipients of Booking.com’s Guest Review Awards!  Thank you to all of our fabulous guests for taking the time to share their thoughts on the House, their experience and this amazing place we live in!

Thank you!

Happy New Year

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We’ve had a fabulous start to the year with guests in from Israel, Germany, the UK and the Netherlands, a few brides and grooms – it’s been amazing.

We love recommending local places and restaurants and experiences that we’ve enjoyed in New Zealand.  After recommending a local winery in Martinborough our guests wrote to us…..

“We mentioned your names and they found us a table today- it was really fantastic thank you so much as I am sure it made the difference for us getting in!”

I just loved reading this, it gave me goosebumps.

Here is to a year filled with great adventures, good health, and to our fabulous guests!

-Rachel & Rod (and Ms. Weston….)

 

 

YUM!

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We had a fun day at the House yesterday…a local chef, Helen Filtcroft has expanded her business, Cook Learn Love to provide cooking classes in local hotels and B&Bs.

The Taranaki Daily News were here and covered one of the lessons and created a lovely video you can see here:  http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/84665018/chef-expands-cooking-classes-into-the-hotel-room-market

It’s fabulous to think of little local experiences that we can offer our guests.  We love food and wine, and to to be able to offer local talented chefs to come to the House is just a fabulous combination.

 

Restaurant Review – The Hour Glass

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I can’t believe that I have not written about the Hour Glass prior to this…I started this post months and months ago, and then just couldn’t finish it.  There is so much that I want to write about this awesome place – our ‘local’ and so much more.

The only thing to do this place justice, is to visit it.

It is an amazing tapas bar just blocks from the House…it is cosy and sophisticated, the food is truly fresh and flavorful, the menu changes often,  the wine is epic (one of the first in town to have Californian wines,) and there are over 80 craft beers by the bottle….

We often run into our guests when we go there and we more often run into friends, neighbors and meet interesting new people.

The owners, AJ and Mark are tremendously professional but even more friendly and warm.  The service is amazing…who doesn’t love a cold water next to your wine, or to have your favorite drink remembered?

Top of our list!

The Hour Glass

49 Liardet St, @ Devon, 06-758 2299
Closed Sundays and Mondays

 

 

Kindness of Strangers

It has been a very, very long time since I’ve written on this blog – all is very well, great really, at the House, business is growing and we’ve had some really amazing guests…but this year has been a very tough one personally for me and for Rod.

I will write about our losses and stresses, but for now, I’m focusing on the unbelievable community that we live in.  So many people here have reached out to us, stopped by, sent flowers, popped into the house for a cup of tea, baked us cakes, and just made sure that we knew they were thinking of us, and sharing in our time of sadness.  Just over 4 years of making this lovely seaside town our new home, and we’ve made a tremendous life here.  Our friends have become family and our relationships with our family and each other have grown because of it.

This blog by a fellow New Yorker captures the spirit of this amazing country.  “Marcel Proust said that, ‘The only true voyage of discovery is not to go to new places, but to have other eyes.’ It only took a week in New Zealand to see my need for new eyes.”  Welcome!

 

Taranaki Weddings – Industry Awards

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We are delighted to have been nominated in two categories in the upcoming Taranaki Weddings – Industry Awards.  These nominations mean so much to us, because they come directly from brides and grooms who have stayed at the House and given us the huge honor of hosting their wedding in our garden.

I get such joy out of hosting people during their wedding.  The House has a certain energy when we are hosting wedding parties.  I’ll never forget crying tears of joy when I saw our first bride getting ready at the House….we strive to help with every detail, making sure they are pampered, that the bridesmaids are taken care of, that the families have something to eat, that everyone is happy and ready for the gorgeous event that awaits them.

It is a huge feeling of emotion and accomplishment when the wedding cars leave…or the bride and groom check out.  I’ll never forget the weddings we’ve had here.  This House was built in the 1890’s and we are truly just caretakers of it for a brief time…but I am proud that for the time that we will own it, that we’ve been able to fill our garden with love and celebration.

I get to do this for a living…I am so very humbled by these nominations, and thank you if you could kindly vote for us.  We will break out the champagne to celebrate!

You can vote for us in the Accommodation category here:

http://www.taranakiweddings.com/awards/vote/?category=39

and in the Venue category here:

http://www.taranakiweddings.com/awards/vote/?category=11