In 1999 Bryan Mackenzie decided he wanted to find a house which he could share with family and friends. He received encouragement from his children, who were now in their 20’s, to look for a family retreat, that they could all share.

The property criteria Bryan came up with was:

-the retreat should be a few hours from Melbourne,

-a place they (family and friends) could all spend time together

-in a district where there were many places to eat and visit,

-somewhere, that in order to finance this dream, could be shared with paying guests.

Bloomfield, the property  he found had a four bedroom house, large garden and situated in the little village of Stanley, formed the perfect combination to meet all of his requirements. However in order to fulfil the vision of sharing this property with paying guests and financing his dream, Bryan knew it was necessary to provide modern conveniences.

Inside the house there is a beautiful lounge room and dining room, 4 bedrooms and bathroom and a verandah which went all the way around. In order to provide the type of accommodation that would attract people from the city the house needed ensuite bathrooms to each of the 4 bedrooms.   The only way that this could be done without severely corrupting the original architecture of the house was to install the bathrooms in the roof with individual stairs accessing them from the bedrooms.

Doorways to the bedrooms from the central hallway were 600mm from the corner of the room (as they often are in this type of architecture) leaving just enough room to put a concealed entry to the stairs behind the open door. Spiral stairs gave us enough access to the roof space allowing 4 ensuite bathrooms. The bathrooms are small however they provide a shower, toilet, basin and a Velux window. The Velux windows are ideal as they provide light, ventilation and even a view without changing or affecting the original architectural integrity.

Bloomfield has now been operating as self-contained accommodation for  18 years and has been occupied most weekends during this time. Many of the guests have commented on how much they enjoy the ensuite bathrooms up the spiral stairs in the roof overviewing the garden.