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Saturday, October 15, 2011

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Monday, October 3, 2011

Two Leek Orchids. The Slender Leek Orchid and an unknown yellow Leek Orchid.  In a patch that was burnt last year.

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Saturday, September 10, 2011

Lost Ducklings


Yesterday I heard a commotion in the forest behind us. There was quacking and cheeping and crows. I saw a crow fly off with a ducking in its beak and managed to chase the other one away. The ducklings then walked past my feet, across the lawn and down the side of the house. As they got to the front of the house Mum and Dad duck came around and they all met up again with much ado.

The two crows were still trying to attack them so I had to chase them away as they walked along our firebreak, heading towards the creek, about 1km away. I had to leave them as they left our property. I hope they made it ok.  These are wood ducks that nest in hollows in the trees on the property behind us. The ducklings drop down and then have to make their way to the water.

6 well camouflaged ducklings coming out of the forest.

Heading in the right direction. They wait for each other as they go.

Mum and Dad Duck reunited with their children. Unfortunately at least one has already been taken by the crows. Bella was very good and did not chase them.

Margaret River walk to 10 Mile Dam



Went for a walk along the Margaret River towards the 10 Mile Dam. Very still section then there are waterfalls.


First Caledinia orchids for 2011


First cowslip orchid for the year. Quite a lot are now suddenly popping up.


First spider orchid seen this year. This was on the Leavesley's block that was burnt last summer.

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First Caledinia orchids for 2011

First cowslip orchid for the year. Quite a lot are now suddenly popping up.


First spider orchid seen this year. This was on the Leavesley's block that was burnt last summer.

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Margaret River walk to 10 Mile Dam


Went for a walk along the Margaret River towards the 10 Mile Dam. Very still section then there are waterfalls.


Lost Ducklings

Yesterday I heard a commotion in the forest behind us. There was quacking and cheeping and crows. I saw a crow fly off with a ducking in its beak and managed to chase the other one away. The ducklings then walked past my feet, across the lawn and down the side of the house. As they got to the front of the house Mum and Dad duck came around and they all met up again with much ado.

The two crows were still trying to attack them so I had to chase them away as they walked along our firebreak, heading towards the creek, about 1km away. I had to leave them as they left our property. I hope they made it ok.  These are wood ducks that nest in hollows in the trees on the property behind us. The ducklings drop down and then have to make their way to the water.

6 well camouflaged ducklings coming out of the forest.

Heading in the right direction. They wait for each other as they go.

Mum and Dad Duck reunited with their children. Unfortunately at least one has already been taken by the crows. Bella was very good and did not chase them.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Laurance Vineyard

Had lunch at Laurance Estate today (the one with the chick on a stick). Very pleasant lasagna and Pam had a
Turkish chicken sandwich.  Their wine tasting is a bit odd as they charge $9 for 6 tasting glasses, which are on a tray which you take to a table and sip while you read the tasting notes.  Overall a good experience as you can compare at your leisure. However, the tasting notes are not very detailed and you don't get that exchange with cellar staff about the various qualities in the wine.  It think it works for Laurance as their wines are expensive so they recoup some of the tasting costs from the many lookers but not buyers. I'm glad none of the other wineries use this method as I prefer the personal touch. Still a very lovely setting. It was raining so poor Bella was not allowed out.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Best Home during our WA Trip


“Best Home during our WA Trip”
5 of 5 starsReviewed June 20, 2011 - NEW
My wife booked Loaring 13-14/06 and I initially did not think it's the best choice because it's c. 5-6km from town centre, but as soon as I arrived there I loved it: spotless room with spa in a very quiet garden, cosy lounge/dinning room like at home, fresh breakfast and free internet. A cute dog called Bella gave us lots fun. Dirk gave us great help for local information. We even changed our tour for rest of WA. Highly recommended! Alan
  • Stayed June 2011, traveled as a couple

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Lovely


“Lovely”
4 of 5 starsReviewed June 19, 2011 - NEW
This place has been purpose built to operate as a B&B, and it works really well, with a huge common area, lovely breakfast each morning, and the muffins on arrival went down so well! The owners were very hospitable and helped us each morning on what to do, giving us tips on routes or activities we otherwise wouldn't have known about or considered. The rooms were lovely - the beds were so comfy it was difficult to get up each morning! The spa was the drawcard for us and we put it to good use, it was divine and a great way to finish the day along with a glass of local wine.

The B&B is surrounded by bushland, we were lucky to see a kangaroo one day. The only downside to this is that a) the parking area is very very dark at night, to the point where maybe it would be a good idea to put in a solar-powered light outside to help is find our way. And b) our sleep was interrupted on two of our three nights by a local frog, which has very unique moaning call which went on all night.

I'd definitely return, but would be sure to take some very effective ear plugs next time!
Stayed May 2011, traveled as a couple




Fortunately for guests the Moaning Frogs have stopped their calling and lights are being installed.




Monday, June 20, 2011

Ticks all the boxes about a bed and breakfast place


“Ticks all the boxes about a bed and breakfast place”


Loaring Place was my husband and my first experience staying in a bed and breakfast ("B&B") and we felt extremely pampered by the hospitality shown by the hosts, Dirk and Pam and the warmth of the country-style home decor. We actually look forward to returning to Loaring Place after a tiring day of exploring the various sights around the Margaret River region, as we can help ourselves to little comforts like home made muffins and exquisite tea / coffee in the common area as well as free wi-fi and a rejuvenating jacuzzi bath in the room. Drik and Pam's dog, Bella, was also a real bundle of joy. Although this was our first stay in a B&B, I feel that it would be a tall order for other B&Bs to top our experience at Loaring Place.
Stayed June 2011, traveled as a couple



Sunday, June 19, 2011

Photos of Bella, our Labradoodle

Bella certainly attracts a lot of attention.

Stephanie and family had a great time keeping her amused.


Mum tried to hold her but Bella thought that enough was enough.


Darren and Christine had to work hard to catch her in this pose, as she is immediately distracted by a stick or honkey nut.



Jeff and Eileen also took a shine to her.



Life is settling into quite a routine for Bella now.

In the morning, she sees jumps onto our bed and gives Pam a good morning kiss, then she hangs around in the bathroom while I have a shower.  She then sees it as her duty to disrupt me while I am setting up the lounge for breakfast by constantly bringing me balls and tugs. Then she waits by the hallway and greets the guests as they come down for breakfast.  We prefer that she leaves the guests alone during breakfast but she sneaks in to show off every now and then.

She then hangs around during cleaning up time as there are always some scraps and milk for her. She then follows either Pam or me if we are doing anything interesting, otherwise she flops near us and goes to sleep.  From 3.00pm she is at the front entrance waiting for new guests to arrive so that she can greet them. Then from 4.30pm she pesters me until I give in and we go for a walk about 5pm.  She loves to race along the sandy fire breaks and sniff where kangaroos have passed. We often see a kangaroo and she loves to chase them so it takes a bit of yelling to get her to stop and return to me.  She is getting better so there is some hope there.

We then have to have a game of ball or chasey when we get home.  She begrudgingly lets us get on and have our dinner, but will let us know that it is her turn for dinner as soon as we have finished.  After her dinner, she pesters me with balls and tugs until I sit on the ground in the lounge and have another game of pulling and throwing the tug.  Finally she relents and allows me to watch a bit of TV, but will still bring me her tug every now and then, just in case I give in and throw it.  I usually then go to my office, where Bella will wait and greet each guest as they return from dinner.

Pam then calls Bella, and she hops onto our bed and enjoys the comfort of our doona.  Finally, when I go to bed, I have to pick her up, take her outside for a bit, then pop her into her bed in the laundry.  I have to make sure her bowl of kibbles is full, as she likes to have a midnight snack as well.  What a dogs life.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Cosy and Friendly



Reviewed June 16, 2011 - NEW
Loaring Place is a lovely quiet bed and breakfast, situtated about 5 minutes drive from Margaret River town centre. The hosts, Dirk and Pam Hos, were amazingly friendly and helpful. Dirk was a superb tour advisor for our Sunday plans. He pointed out a ton of things we never would have thought about doing, which really added to our enjoyment of the trip.

The rooms were lovely and the bathrooms superb. We got treated to some noisy frogs who fortunately shut up and sleep time!

Breakfast was great: try the home made baked beans.

The only downside was that we would have preferred something walking distance to the town centre so that we could both have had a few wines instead of needing a designated driver.

Overall great, I would recommend to anyone, especially couples and I would stay there again.
  • Stayed June 2011, traveled with friends

Monday, June 13, 2011

Singapore and Malaysia

It is great to see increasing visitors from Singapore and Malaysia.

Both Singapore and Malaysia are becoming a major source of visitors for us as the cheap short flights and 3hr drive from Perth make it easy for them to slip down and have a great holiday and a total contrast from the heat, humidity and traffic jams of their home towns.  I think word of mouth is driving this rather than advertising because many of our guests from this region mention having heard how good it is here.  Google, however, is the main tool they use to find Loaring Place B&B

Like the comfort of home yet with a 5-star treatment


“Like the comfort of home yet with a 5-star treatment”
5 of 5 starsReviewed June 12, 2011 - NEW
The host, Dirk, was especially affable and knowledgeable about the places to see and do in Margaret River. His lovable dog, Bella, made us smile with her playful antics and friendliness. I miss stroking her beautiful shaggy, white fur! The living room was just like staying in a luxurious home, with a large flat-screen tv and computer, sofas, and games and dvds included. All the 3 out of 4 guest bedrooms we stayed in were perfectly decorated in warm, earthly tones. I took the opportunity to try out the jacuzzi bath and really pampered myself! Even the beds had heaters with adjustable settings in them so my family and I were warmly tucked in despite the cool winter night. I enjoyed the free wi-fi too. The hospitality received was certainly superb - especially with the complimentary muffins, made-to-order gourmet breakfast , and the packed sandwiches for lunch. The location was also perfect as it was in a quiet little corner yet right smack in the centre of Margaret River, so most of the attractions were easily accessible. We were certainly sad to leave after our one-night stay. If I had a choice between a hotel and Loaring Place B&B, there would still be no contest. Thank you Dirk and Pam for the wonderful stay.
Room Tip: The rooms are lovely, but are all double beds. 
Stayed June 2011, traveled with family







Wednesday, June 8, 2011

A Gem in Margaret River

“A Gem in Margaret River”
5 of 5 starsReviewed in TripAdvisor June 2, 2011
If there's one place we would recommend for anyone to stay in Margaret River, this is THE place!! We knew we've made the right decision we stepped into Loaring Place. The place was so well kept and everything was so well thought of. This was our first trip to MR and certainly won't be our last. Dirk has been such gracious host and the stay was made complete with the presence of Bella whom we've all adored to death! We've not stopped talking about this B&B even when tho we're done with our trip to Perth yet. The cleanliness of the place, the super comfortable beds, the yummy breakfast(the nice muffins and homemade bread) , the nice smelling bathrooms, the deco etc etc all made the 10 of us yearn to go back there again. Thanks, Dirk, for giving us such wonderful memories!
  • Stayed June 2011
    • 5 of 5 starsValue
    • 5 of 5 starsRooms
    • 4 of 5 starsLocation
    • 5 of 5 starsCleanliness
    • 5 of 5 starsService

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Hayshed Hill

Went to Hayshed Hill for lunch yesterday. It is a lovely relaxed setting with a great view over the vineyard.  Their wines are very pleasant. Pam really liked their chardonnays, especially from Block 6. This surprised her very much as she for a long time hated chardonnays as they were too oaky. I enjoyed a Shiraz Tempranillo so much that I bought an extra couple of bottles.

Pam had a French Onion Soup and I had a pizza from a menu designed to be light. Both serves were excellent. The place was quite busy but still very relaxed. So relaxed in fact that we went back to the cellar door, bought our wines, and then left without paying our bill for the meal. Fortunately they had remembered we were from Loaring Place B&B and called me later and I was able to apologise and give them my card details over the phone.

Also went to the Margaret River Chocolate Factory as that was close by to Hayshed Hill.  Very decadent and seductive. They have tastings of their chocolates but they still made a handsome profit as Pam bought some macadamias coated in chocolate (of course) and she bought me some Buderim ginger coated in dark chocolate (also very nice).  A great day. Not so for Bella as she got car sick and had to sit on Pam's lap on the way back.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

guest book comment

Deb& Roger May 20th2011.
What a comfortable and lovely home base to explore Margaret River. we loved our room, the bed was superb and view into the natural forest surrounding so peaceful. We aren't usually bath people, preferring showers, but did take advantage of the bath and it was so relaxing. Access to tea, coffee and muffins was great. As were the breakfasts. Thanks for creating such a beautiful space, And for your warm hospitality. And for Bella, such a joy!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Serene and welcoming - wonderful B+B - Loaring place - great


Three recent reviews on Tripadvisor

“Serene and welcoming...”
5 of 5 stars
Date of review: May 11, 2011 - New
My husband and I stayed here for our honeymoon and just fell in love with the place.. The rooms are beautifully kept with a romantic spa bath, there is a plush communal area with foxtel and free Internet. The gardens have a BBQ area, outdoor furniture and even the odd kangaroo! The breakfast is what really sealed the deal for me... Not only a selection of continental assortments but a choice of fully cooked hot breakfasts with fresh ground coffee! The people who run the place own the place so you really feel looked after and welcomed like an extension of home. Highly recommend this hidden gem!
  • Reviewer ratings for this hotel:
    • 5 of 5 starsValue
    • 5 of 5 starsRooms
    • 5 of 5 starsLocation
    • 5 of 5 starsCleanliness
    • 5 of 5 starsService
  • Date of stay: April 2011

“ wonderf ul B+B”
5 of 5 stars
Date of review: Apr 30, 2011
This place was fantastic. Great home cooked breaky, close to all great wineries, huge bathroom with spa! Luxurious and amazing!!! Lovely homely place with a friendly owner!
  • Reviewer ratings for this hotel:
    • 4 of 5 starsValue
    • 5 of 5 starsRooms
    • 5 of 5 starsLocation
    • 5 of 5 starsCleanliness
    • 5 of 5 starsService
    • 4 of 5 starsSleep Quality
  • Date of stay: April 2011
  • Visit was for: Leisure
  • Traveled with: Spouse/Partner
  • Member since: September 05, 2007
  • Recommended by this reviewer? Yes

“Loaring place - great”
5 of 5 stars
Date of review: Apr 20, 2011
We're not regular b&b people, so it took a while to get used to the "rules", but it turns out there aren't any, so this was not difficult. Dirk adds a depth of local knowledge you certainly don't get at the Sheraton, while Bella is probably the friendliest puppy (probably 'dog' by the time you read this) on the planet. The plot is hacked out of the local forest, so expect animal noises and glimpses of beautiful birds in the garden. The breakfasts are to die for, everything is fresh and even the baked beans are home made. Don't expect to walk in to town, but stop the car half way to say hi to the kangaroos.
  • Reviewer ratings for this hotel:
    • 5 of 5 starsValue
    • 5 of 5 starsRooms
    • 4 of 5 starsLocation
    • 5 of 5 starsCleanliness
    • 5 of 5 starsService
    • 5 of 5 starsSleep Quality
  • Date of stay: April 2011
  • Visit was for: Leisure
  • Traveled with: Friends
  • Member since: May 13, 2006
  • Recommended by this reviewer? Yes