A secluded 1860’s stone retreat in Swansea, overlooking Great Oyster Bay is waiting to welcome you. Meet The Burrows.
↑ Bek and Paul Burrows found ‘The Burrows’ after more than ten years of searching for just the right place. They still pinch themselves every time they arrive, open the gate and take in the incredible expanse of Great Oyster Bay as it comes into view on the drive in.
↑ The Burrows is a coming together of both Paul and Bek’s lives (and loves) both before they met and what they have built together as a couple and family. It’s also home to treasures from both their families.
↑ Comforting rituals are always top of mind for visitors to The Burrows.
↑ The sublte smokey notes and woody warmth of Southern Wild Co’s Southern Sky is the perfect fit for The Burrows.
Swansea, Great Oyster Bay
Lutruwita / Tasmania
What is the story behind The Burrows? If the walls could talk, what would they say?
There would definitely be some incredible stories if these walls could talk, given how thick they are. I've no doubt they would hold an abundance of fascinating tales to tell.
We found The Burrows after more than ten years of searching for just the right place and, after two attempts to purchase it, we were finally successful! We still pinch ourselves every time we arrive, open the gate and the incredible expanse of Great Oyster Bay comes into view as we drive in ... That this little piece of paradise is ours.
A home is made of interesting layers and thoughtful touches. How did you go about decorating The Burrows and making a home away from home for others?
The Burrows is a coming together of both Paul and I (Bek). Our lives (and loves) both before we met and what we have built together as a couple and family are very much entwined here.
It’s also home to treasures from both our families, Paul's much loved print Young Hare by Albrecht Dürer that now sit’s above the armchair originally hung in Paul’s Nanna’s shack at Point Lookout on Stradbroke Island before being passed to him. My grandparents' fireside chairs now reside next to our fireplace, and on the mantelpiece is a jar of cat’s eyes shells, collected by our family from the many beaches we've explored together over the years.
Many guests share that they feel a familiarity when they arrive here and experience comforting memories of their own childhoods, which as a host is always special to hear. It may sound selfish to say but we didn’t actively consider our guests’ experience when we set out reimagining The Burrows, concentrating more on creating a place that felt like home to us. We have combined elements we've both loved from places we've stayed both in Australia and overseas with an easy, uncontrived, slightly “undone” aesthetic, and although we have sentimental pieces here, we didn’t want The Burrows to feel too precious.
Where do you recommend your guests visit for local experiences that appeal to the heart, mind, eyes and belly?
We have three beaches very close to us that we love and each offer a different experience. I think Spiky would be my favourite, always lots of interesting shells to be found in the rockpools. Venturing further afield to do the day walk to Wineglass Bay at Freycinet if you are feeling energetic, is spectacular.
Cake & Honey has excellent coffee and home baked cake, tarts, biscuits and Michaela’s egg, halloumi and bacon rolls are delicious. Going on to a tasting at Gala Estate is definitely a must; not only are their wines incredible, the Cellar Door is an experience within itself - especially in Winter. Pick up a bottle of Gala's Vintage sparkling Rosé on your way out, followed by a visit to Melshell Oysters for a dozen (or two!) freshly shucked oysters. Dinner at The Homestead Restaurant at Piermont is always amazing, pre-dinner local Tassie sparkling on the terrace followed by their tasting menu that celebrates the seasons with a focus on locally sourced and raised produce.
What is your favourite time of day, your favourite season, and your favourite spot at The Burrows?
Sunrise and sunset, equally... from the bath! The sun rises behind The Hazards within the Freycinet National Park, perfectly framing our bathhouse doors that open out to the surrounding unruly coastal landscape. The usual accompaniment of early morning birdsong provides a beautiful soundtrack. In the afternoon, the sun reflects off The Hazards, bathing them in a deep pink glow and as the sun sets, late afternoon baths with a local Tassie G+T in hand are hard to beat.
What rituals make you feel at home, wherever you may be in the world?
Definitely a cup of tea first thing in the morning for me. It's coffee for Paul, and when we're lucky enough to be at The Burrows ourselves, it's made in our vintage stovetop Atomic. I'm also pretty comfort focused so I spend a significant amount of time in my pj's (I often work from home which helps!) so always have several options. Lighting the fire always feels like home, especially living in Tasmania!
What Southern Wild Co scent is the perfect fit for The Burrows and why?
We love sharing Southern Wild Co's Southern Sky with our guests and always have one on the window sill next to the bath in our bath house. The scent’s woody warmth feels to us like it fits here, with the subtle hints of woodsmoke. It’s a gentle scent that isn’t overpowering in this intimate space.
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