I have a home nearby. The Yarra Valley is one of our favourite spots to unwind when we return to Australia. The Chateau has a casual dining area, the Sweetwater Cafe, which is great. The YV hot air balloon trips return here for a champagne breakfast.There is a delightful bar area off the cafe. The formal dining room is a grand space for special celebrations, as is the sitting area prior to the dining entry. Exclusive weddings would book this venue and the property has been seen ocassionally in commercials.
I have not stayed at the Chateau, only eaten there, but the gardens, building and area are wonderful and it is a restful place. Adjoining the property is a small wine tasting room with gallery and upstairs bar. There is also a large winery-dining cafe with glorious views across the valley. The latter facility can be noisy if there is a large crowd but is a modern, airy and agreeable space. Once a month there is a Farmers Market in a farm barn on the property. It draws a good following and you can purchase fresh produce, flowers, crafts, soaps and preserves there.
The Chateau is a good spot for further exploration to the many wineries, (another with a gallery), Healesville Sanctuary (recommended), a new golf course at Wonga Park area, and is only about an hour drive from the city of Melbourne. Visits to the Dandenong Ranges would take about 3/4 hour to drive. Go see William Rickett's Sanctuary at Mt Dandenong. Enjoy!
Dear Suzett7Architom -- I just want to thank you for your recommendations. 8 nights at Chateau Yering were more than advertised. Enjoyed 2 sets of 4 nights, broken with 2 nights at Phillip's Island to eat some fantastic fish and chips, and spend an evening on the beach, ecotouring, waiting in silence with night vision goggles for those wonderful little penguins to brave the shore ... thousands of them... what a glorious experience that was. when i returned to CY, it was like I was returning home --- some of the staff accused me of moving in!! Healesville Sanctuary was a great day among the aussie animals... i especially enjoyed the platypus exhibit, and the parrot and cockatoos. Driving thru the Dandenong Range was grand as well. Gum trees well over 200 metres or more high, real rain forest in the mountains, wild wombat, a few snakes, some really pretty and well signed waterfalls, and of course, grand wineries to recharge at after a lovely drive or hike. Skipped golf. Too much to do and see. CYering was more than just a country chateau -- really gracious and helpful staff, excellent food, perfectly appointed rooms (even a bodum coffee carafe and REAL coffee in the room for morning coffee.... not just that instant in a single use package..). Noisy, active, colourful andentertaining bird life everywhere. kangaroos, and koalas. Just a great trip. I can see why its one of your favourite spots. What a great place!! didnt get on 'puffing billy' the steam train --- next time. And in this case, its easy to say "next time".... and mean it.
My husband and I had the great pleasure of spending four nights at CY at the end of May 2007 (the beginning of winter) and wish we could have moved in. The staff was more than gracious and made our stay all that much more enjoyable. Prior to our stay we had been with about 70 university choral students traveling New Zealand and Australia for ten days performing five concerts. The beautiful and peaceful surroundings of CY gave us just the rest we needed. The hotel staff organized a full day wine tour for us during which we enjoyed wonderful Austrailian wines we could never find in rural Arizona where we live. The food and wait staff provide a number of very memorable meals. While we were there we had a couple of wet days, during which we took full advantage of the beautiful library with a large fireplace which the staff kept blazing. It was a wonderful place for us to enjoy a bit of reading time.
Needless to stay we would love to return to CY for another stay but there are also so many other places we are looking forward to visiting. But if the opportunity arises we will surely return.
Dear Benitab52 --- i suspect that everyone who has stayed at CY wants to 'move in' and your comments confirm that my own wonderful experience was the rule, not an exception.
One of the extra touches that was great was the "plush toy cat" that was the 'do not disturb' sign. The 'chateau-keeping' staff had such a sense of humour, one day when I returned they had that toy cat on the bed, with slippers on.... it was that sense of 'you are at home, and we are going to make you feel at home whether you like it or not....' that made thatstay so comfortable. I laughed alot at the episode with the 'cat'. The next day they had put a hat on the cat, with the slippers as well. It got to the point that I was looking forward to what next they had done...
Iknew that the manageress had a team that enjoyed working at such a fine establishment. These little extras are a reflection on the calibre of the hotel, and on the style of clear "experienced" luxury management. And it is such attention that brings back loyal clients.
Yes, I have to agree about the staff at Chateau Yering, our room cat was a gray and white striped cat curled up as if taking a nap. My husband named him Albert on arrival and after four days with Albert and the wonderful staff we had to ship Albert back to Arizona ( along with some books we had finished but didin't want to carry for the rest of our trip). Albert now resides on a stack of hat boxes in our bedroom as a fond reminder our our stay. Until we can return, we revive our memories with a bottle of wine or two that we can find here from Yering Station. We had a wonderful 2001 Syrah from Yering Station just last week at a little restraurant in town and all we could talk about during dinner was returning to Chateau Yering.
As everyone has pretty much told you, the Chateau Yering is GREAT. Stayed there for four nights in November 2007, and could not have been more pleased. Perhaps it was that they assigned us what we were told was the nicest suite in the place, but the fact is the wrap around terrace was amazing, the room an oasis, the food (they stole the chef from The Lake House) incredibly good. Staff could not have been more helpful. What we particularly appreciated is that we're wine buffs, and they arranged private tours for us at two of the best local wineries that do not have cellar doors. We ended up importing our own case of Yarra Yarra cabernet as a result, and got hold of a case of Yeringberg from the US importer. Just a delightful time. I've been to well over a hundred Relais & Chateaux in my life (having been born next door to one in Talloires, France), and I found this one of the best. It's not a Relais Gourmand, but it's really top notch in every way, and a vastly superior wine country experience to, say, the Napa