Local resident and talented architect Michael Baker exudes enthusiasm for all things creative. Architecture, landscapes, family, food, surfing and community. Michael spoke fervently about the incredibly diverse creative community that live and work in Mount Eliza and across the Mornington Peninsula.
A significant amount of foodie lust is generated when the words Pier Street Kitchen are mentioned - a perfect neighbourhood establishment, full of friendly people and good vibes.
If the love of adventure is in your blood then seek out Merricks Cottage for your next holiday on the Mornington Peninsula. This chic, contemporary two-bedroom cottage, will transform your vibe from the moment you enter its gate and gardens. Situated between Red Hill and Merricks Beach you’ll be within walking distance to some of the most iconic experiences in the region.
Come here and you’ll feel like you’ve won the trifecta every time as the vision of St Andrews Beach Brewery is simple - focus on making great beer, serve delicious food & provide visitors to the Pen with an experience to remember.
If you’re searching for the archetypal, relaxed, Australian beach suburb café then the re-emergence of South Beach Project, opposite Mount Martha South Beach is a stand out. With first-rate food, top-notch coffee and thoughtful service, it’s no wonder this café has made a big splash with many locals’ ecstatic that breakfast and lunch for this iconic spot is back on the radar. Going out for a brunch of avocado on toast and a perfectly brewed flat white is a weekend ritual for many down Mt Martha way but the eclectic menu also includes dishes such as Fried Noodle Omelette, Mexican Grain Salad, Cauliflower Cous Cous & Korean Fried Chicken Burgers. As a region, we are spoiled for choice when it comes to exceptional cafes and South Beach Project fits neatly into this bracket.
They say you shouldn’t take work home with you, but there’s something to savour in a place of business with an authentic sense of homeliness. And you guessed it; the business of Johnny Ripe is food – good quality food!
Peppers Moonah Links Resort is a stylish contemporary holiday base located in the heart of the southern Peninsula. From here you can enjoy some of the best experiences the region offers including Peninsula Hot Springs, wineries, miles of coastal escapades, quaint townships or if you’re more inclined to ‘bunk in’ beautifully appointed rooms, two outstanding golf courses, landscaped gardens, an in-house spa, gymnasium and outdoor pool.
Blane Paton and his family understand the land, and have been a part of the Mornington Peninsula landscape since his parents moved to Merricks over 60 years ago. Their farm was focused on dairy cattle, but horses have always been an important part of their lives. “In the early days we rode horses to herd the cattle,” says Blane. “We never used motorbikes. In the 1980s I bought a Clydesdale horse and then we started showing the breed.”
A long-term love affair with Santorini, and a passion for Greek food, has brought a new culinary vibe to the Mornington Peninsula. Across the road from the McCrae lighthouse (at what was The Pavilion), Alatonero is giving diners the opportunity to enjoy well known and much loved Greek delicacies. With an impressive resume in the food world, and with energy and drive to burn, Jacqui Poulier found the perfect location for her new venture, where she has brought to life her love of food, cooking, people and stories. The restaurant is light, bright, open and airy with a fresh sea breeze that drifts through the open plan dining area.
There’s a buzz in the air on Mornington Peninsula, and it comes in the form of a contemporary cutting edge designer hotel, formal restaurant, smart bar, casual dining experience and cellar door. The name is Jackalope – and it’s the new home of Willow Creek Vineyard Wines. The vision of Louis Li's, a 29 year old Chinese national who has been living in Melbourne for ten years, Willow Creek Vineyard is now the site for the world’s first Jackalope Hotel. Moving here as an 18 year old to study film making, Louis Li is well versed in luxury property development with his parents being involved in a number of luxury hotels and residential properties in Kunming in south western China. So in a sense his first solo project is following in the tradition of his family business. Being a film maker Lewis Lee is a great storyteller, and his first foray into hospitality shows his appetite for art and design and food culture, which shines through every element in this property. His debut Jackalope Hotel in Merricks will be followed by a 40 room hotel in Flinders Lane which is scheduled to open in 2019.
Walking into Bentons Rd Veterinary Clinic, you immediately feel at ease, and that is exactly the feeling that Dr Kelly Halls and her team have worked very hard to create. They want both the humans and the animals that visit their clinic to feel comfortable, and for it to be a stress free experience for all creatures, great and small.
Walking into KX Pilates in Main Street Mornington is a refreshing experience. Light, bright and stylishly decorated, the atmosphere is calm and relaxed although the pilates machinery is hard at work with a maximum of ten clients per session. And there a lot of sessions. 55 sessions per week in fact, keeping the pilates machinery, and owner Charmaine Alba, extremely busy. KX Pilates is a franchise with locations all over Melbourne. The concept is based on a fast paced, high intensity, body-toning 50 minute workout. Charmaine started out as a client of KX pilates in Melbourne’s CBD and loved it so much she decided to become an owner herself, utilising her health and fitness background.