It’s not just the romantic features and the luxury amenities that make St. Clairs Cottage a unique Bruny Island accommodation for weekend getaways and romantic holidays. The legacy of St. Clairs Cottage is woven into the history of Bruny Island itself, along with the contributions of its owner, long-term Bruny Island resident, Bob and Julie St Clair-Hewitt.
Designed and built by Bob and Julie in 1988, St. Clairs was originally a restaurant, the first on Bruny island and the Southernmost restaurant in Australia. Not only did St. Clairs provide a place for Bruny Island locals and holiday visitors to eat a meal that they didn’t have to prepare themselves, the original St. Clairs also offered live entertainment. Bob and Julie were professional cabaret entertainers who prepared the meals, hosted the diners, and then performed a cabaret-style floor show to the delight of St. Clairs cafe guests.
It was a position as musical director at Wrest Point Casino that brought Bob to Tasmania where he met Julie who had just won Tasmania’s New Faces It was the beauty and wildlife that brought Bob and Julie to Bruny Island. It was the peace and serenity that convinced them to stay.
In between musical tours throughout Europe, Bob shared his love of music and his performing experience with Bruny Island and Tasmania as well. Bob has been the Composer in Residence for Flinders Island and King Island and has served on the Tasmanian State Panel of the Music Examination Board. Currently Bob is the Performing Arts Coordinator for Bruny Island, and is actively involved with the production of both professional and amateur performances there.
St. Clairs Restaurant was named after the TV show, “St. Clairs and Friends” which aired in Tasmania in 1982. Bob reluctantly made the decision to close the cafe after he was offered the opportunity to perform with the well-known Austrian actor-comedian Justus Neumann during a five-month tour of the festivals in Austria, Germany and Switzerland. When his travelling and performing schedule allowed him to return full time to Bruny Island, he converted St. Clairs Restaurant into St. Clairs Cottage accommodation.
Since its opening, St. Clairs Cottage has been chosen as a Bruny Island romantic holiday accommodation by visitors from throughout Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, and the Pacific region, and has been the Bruny Island accommodation destination for guests from as far away as the USA, Canada, Slovenia, Germany, France, and Japan, to name just a few. One of the things that Bob loves best about being a hands-on, on-site owner of a Bruny Island holiday accommodation is all the interesting people from different cultures that he gets to meet. They’ve all got stories to tell, and Bob enjoys hearing them all.
Bob loves to share the natural beauty of his property with St. Clairs Cottage guests, and he’s also happy to help people experience the coastal waters that surround Bruny Island by providing them with a memorable boating or fishing experience.
“Come for the romance, appreciate the food, be dazzled by the scenery and wildlife. Most of all, relish the peace, quiet, and total relaxation that Bruny Island has to offer. It’s what brought me here. It’s what keeps me here. It’s what I am fortunate to be able to share with others.”