Luxurious mountain retreat

A desire to leave their busy corporate lives behind brought French couple Christelle and Gilbert to Mount View, one of the lesser-known pockets of the Hunter Valley.

We had always dreamed of having a luxurious, boutique accommodation business, but what really pushed us over the line was the arrival of our daughter,” shares Christelle.“My background is in five-star hotels, but after Charlotte was born, I just didn’t want to go back to my full-time job in Sydney.”

So began the journey of their new life. The couple looked at various options and fell for the secluded serenity of Cedars at Mount View. They weren’t concerned that each of the resort’s self-sustained villas needed work, rather, it was an additional drawcard.

“It was important for us to put our own stamp on things,” Christelle says.
“Our timing wasn’t great. We bought the property in January 2020, just after the bushfires and the drought, and immediately before COVID hit. But at least the lockdowns gave us the opportunity to learn the ropes of this business. We learnt how to manage the lantana, and to drive trucks and tractors.”

Each one of their renovations had to be organised meticulously. They needed to be completed within a seven to eight week timeframe to manage the impact on their business.

A 2.5 seater King Boulevard sofa by King Living in Preston Velvet Emerald with sensuous curves takes pride of place in the living area along with a Crescent coffee table in Smoked Oak and Nomad Natural rug also by King.

“We wanted to create a luxurious and serene, but also sustainable retreat,” Christelle explains. “Temperatures here range from below zero in winter to close to 40 degrees in the summer. We applied passive house principles throughout, and optimal insulation and double-glazed windows were key for year-round comfort of our guests.

”Let there be white!

The most recently rejuvenated villa is the Treehouse, set on a gentle slope, overlooking the abundant wildlife around the dams and in the bushland below.

Clad in Colorbond, the smart and sophisticated exterior has a wide, L-shaped verandah with timber-look aluminium floorboards and the aesthetic of a modern, alpine ski chalet.
“The inside was dark and dominated by lots of timber, but I wanted it to be fresh, light and bright.”

More beautiful homes in the Spring Edition of Hunter & Coastal Lifestyle Magazine or subscribe here.

Story by Cornelia Schulze, photography courtesy of Cedars Mount View