Why Noojee for Di Johnston? I am often asked, Why Noojee? And there are 3 intertwined reasons – Family – House – Location!
So family…. Long story short I was adopted at birth by a fabulous couple & spent my early years growing up on a farming property in Northern NSW. In my early 30’s it was time to find out where I came from & who I looked like! This is where Victoria comes in. My birth mother (Annie) had met and married Bill (deputy Dad as he is now known and the maker of all the yummy jams on offer at Rosemont House) & was living in Melbourne. With my parents both passed away (the people who bought me up in Northern NSW), my children finished school & me in my early 50’s living in Armidale (NSW) I thought it might be time to move closer to the family that, while I had met & saw a couple of times a year, didn’t really know very well.
So now to the house and the location…. I worked out pretty quickly that I wanted to be on the eastern side of Melbourne as the family all lived in the peninsula area and I really wanted to be no more than an hour away from them. My sister had recently purchased a house in Drouin as well so somewhere in Gippsland was going to work.
I firstly looked around Loch and was very keen on that area but I really needed somewhere where I could fulfill this dream of owning & running a bed and breakfast business. The town had to be right & the house had to be right. I had been researching the house aspect of a B&B for a couple of years & I knew, for it to work for me, the property had to have a shed building I could convert into a B&B or a house where the rooms could easily be cut off from my part of the house with their own entracnces & bathrooms. I had a fair idea of what floor plans would work & those that wouldn’t and I knew the house would need to be pretty or at least be an ugly duckling that could be turned into a swan. Not so much right?
In the end the house found me! My mother (Annie) actually found Rosemont House (then called Langholm Cottage) in this place called Noojee! She had been helping with the house hunting & was sending me quite a few different options. “You’ll LOVE Noojee”, she said, and you know what I did! But probably not for the reasons Annie thought.
Everything about the house & Noojee ticked the right boxes for me personally & for the B&B business.
- The house was SO cute!
- The area is so naturally beautiful.
- The layout really was going to make turning the building into a B&B easy – just a few walls & a bathroom.
- The town was small (very small – population of 160!) but it was a tourist destination, so for me it was the best of both worlds – quiet during the week but touristy enough for an accommodation business to do well.
- The town had 2 places for people to eat out at night – guests would have a choice and I wouldn’t have to offer dinners.
- There was also a cafe so there were 3 choices during the day for guests to eat out.
- There are 3 wedding venues in town – people coming to weddings need accommodation.
- It is at the bottom of Mt Baw Baw so during winter there was a steady stream of people chasing the snow.
- Noojee is only 1.5hrs drive from Melbourne.
So on Christmas Eve 2019 I saw the house for the first time & made an offer on the drive back to Melbourne… And the rest, as they say is history!
The last 7 months have certainly held some blood, sweat, tears and a lot of swearing but also joy and excitement of seeing a long held dream become a reality.
Of course, it has taken a lot longer than the first anticipated 12 weeks from beginning to end – I mean really, how long does it take to move some doors, install new walls, change a foyer into a luxury bathroom, create a beautiful guestroom and build a couple of carports!!
I have been very blessed to have some fabulous people help create Rosemont House Luxury B&B starting with my right hand man, the ever patient, Kevin the old school builder, who loves working on old houses.
I’ve also been helped by Paul the cheerful electrician, Peter the clever cabinet maker, Scott the versatile handyman, Gary the air conditioner guru, Dick the man for anything to do with excavators, dingos, gravel, garden soil and rubbish removal, Anthony the knowledgeable plumber and John the attention to detail tiler and stone mason. As well as all the members of my Melbourne family who have been there to offer support, labour, advice and love along the way and of course not to mention my son, Rex, who has been through all the blood, sweat, tears and swearing!
Now with the doors finally open we look forward to welcoming couples who want a break away, in a country setting, in West Gippsland, Noojee!
Sit on the verandah, after a day exploring all this fabulous region has to offer, with a glass of wine and a cheese platter or kick back in your room with the fireplace on, relaxing, watching a movie! The choice is yours.
We can’t wait to welcome you to Rosemont House Luxury B&B very soon.
This beautiful Californian Bungalow was built in 1930 and started her life at 57 McCrae St, Dandenong but is now known as Rosemont House Luxury B&B in Noojee.
In June 2011, she was cut in half and moved to where she now sits at 368 Mt Baw Baw Tourist Rd.
She was restored and loved back to life by a devoted Melbourne couple who spent most weekends labouring over her.
They named the house Langholm Cottage, which was a combination of their names.
I fell in love with her on Christmas Eve 2019 and the sale went through in February 2020 with the intention of turning her into bed & breakfast accommodation.
I renamed my new home, Rosemont House, which comes from my grandparents’ property in the Upper Macleay NSW where I spent a lot of time when I was young. I’ve always loved the name and thought it was fitting for such a lovely old home.