Sleeping in a Stable: Rustic Romance

Charm was around ever corner our entire Enn Zed trip. Pastoral scenery, enchanting people with captivating accents and darling spring lambs were everywhere you looked. One of the most charm-filled places was St. Leonards Vineyard Cottages in Marlborough.

St. Leonards is an 1880's homestead with accommodations housed in converted buildings from the old farm complex. The Woolshed, the Shearer's Quarters, the Old Dairy and the Stables are lovingly updated and very modern while retaining their original charm. We were housed in the Stables, a romantic hideaway with an efficiency kitchen.

Innkeepers Paul and Daphne Radmall provided fresh breakfast provisions every morning. I love this concept, one that appeared several times during our New Zealand stay. If you've been reading Sticks Forks Fingers for long, you know how much I love my breakfast. With nice ingredients provided and a means to turn them into breakfast, we were able to wake on our own schedule and didn't even have to dress for breakfast. This leisurely approach to beginning the vacation day works for me!

At St. Leonards, Paul told us during our room orientation that the basket of Araucana eggs came from their own hens. Daphne had provided her own preserves, shimmery quince jelly and tart grapefruit/lemon marmalade. It's those personal and homey touches that thrill me and make me feel like a valued guest.

These rich orange yolks...

... beat up so thickly for our scrambled eggs.

It is important to be fueled up before beginning a day of wine tasting!

Credit goes to the girls of St. Leonards for our delicious breakfast.

St. Leonards is set among a sunny lemon orchard,

the same orchard from which Daphne's marmalade was made.

Beyond the orchard is hectare after hectare of Marlborough region Chardonnay grapes and the stately mountains beyond.

The Radmill's keep deer in the orchard. We asked Daphne about them, and before she answered, she asked, "You're not vegetarian are you?" When we said no, she told us that they make their way into their freezer.

St. Leonard's made a terrific, restful launch pad from which to conduct our Marlborough wine tasting. An upcoming post will be on one of the most fabulous wine experiences I've ever had at Marlborough's Te Whare Ra.


  1. What a wonderful way to start your vacation with breakfast ingredients just appearing, so you could have a leisurely breakfast. Beautiful pictures as always!

  2. Wow this sounds really romantic and fresh :)
    I love your pictures...they are so beautiful!

  3. Absolutely beautiful. I go for the quiet romantic retreats any day over the beach or something of the like.

  4. I am absolutely green with envy!!! I am enjoying every moment of your trip and loved this post. Those eggs look just beautiful, especially that deep, rich yolk. How wonderful! I'm so glad that you had such a wonderful time, days that will live forever in your memories. Congratulations again to you!

  5. Incredible accomodations. Your trip reports keep getting better!


  6. Wow, such a fantastic setting - I'm turning slightly green with envy.

    And those eggs look ... well ... perfectly fresh!

  7. This place looks amazing! Your photos are beautiful as well. Thanks for sharing :-)

  8. Wow! fantastic! I have to say, I loved every picture, but it's the eggs that impressed me the most...stunning! I bet they tasted sooo good. Love it, Pam. Your pictures are awesome.


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