Woodlands Of Marburg
WOODLANDS OF MARBURG HAS PERMANENTLY CLOSED AS OF 2018.
Woodlands of Marburg, with its 360 degree views of the Marburg Valley is well worth the two minute detour off the Warrego Highway.
This historic and elegant mansion, surrounded by jacarandas and bunya pines, sits regally atop a ridge and is a stunning reminder of a bygone era. As visitors enter the estate, the property's Fig Tree Vineyard provides a taste of the visual feast that awaits them at the end of the driveway.
The land which Woodlands occupies was purchased in 1870 and was originally the site of a saw mill. In 1890 the mansion was built on the property and became home to the Smith family. Throughout the years the estate has had a diverse history, with many unique characteristics from days gone by still evident. In 1885, the Woodlands estate was the first of its kind to install electricity - even before Parliament House in Brisbane. Further endeavours saw a sugar mill and later, a rum distillery established on the property.
In 1905, amidst drought and depression, the estate faced bankruptcy and was put up for a three day fire sale. No buyers were found at the time and the property, sadly, languished. In 1944 a Dutch missionary order, the Order of the Divine Word, purchased Woodlands. The mansion was used for convalescing missionaries evacuated from New Guinea during the Second World War. In 1946, it became St Vincent's Missionary Seminary and during this time the buildings of Woodlands were renovated and a grotto, cemetery and a half size Olympic pool (dug by hand by the priests and brothers) were added to the estate. Ipswich Grammar School purchased the property in 1986, later selling it to the Cooper family (in 2002) who thankfully opened the estate to the public and began restoring it to its former glory.
There are many reasons to visit Woodlands of Marburg. Casual day visitors are welcome to drop in and discover this elegant estate. For those who would like to learn more about the history of Woodlands, mansion tours are available - with or without a Devonshire Tea. Weekend dining is a real treat, with original cedar walls, marble fireplaces and crystal chandeliers providing old world charm and setting the scene for a special occasion. Resident chefs use local produce to create seasonal menus for and evening diners and Sunday brunch. The Mansion also hosts high teas and for those looking for a little intrigue, Murder Mystery events are also offered. If that's not intriguing enough, there's also talk of a resident ghost or two .....
This beautifully restored property is now used for conferences, corporate events, fine dining, romantic escapes and weddings. In 2006 a heritage listed chapel was moved from the town of Marburg to Woodlands and now sits beside the lush grotto. The chapel was originally opened in 1882 as the Church of St Boniface in Tallegalla - Marburg.
Whilst accommodation is not available in the mansion, several accommodation choices are available on the property, ranging from budget to luxury options. A large swimming pool keeps guests cool on days when the sun scorches the countryside and keen tennis players will be happy to know that tennis courts are also included on this estate.
There's so much history associated with Woodlands of Marburg that a visit here really is a Must Do item. The surrounding countryside and views over the valley to the mountains are breathtaking, so don't forget the camera. Even if it's just to enjoy the ambience of this 250 acre estate, it's definitely worth the 45 minute drive from Brisbane to Woodlands of Marburg.
Need to know: Day visitors are welcome to call in for a look around the beautifully landscaped gardens and manicured grounds. However, for those planning to do a tour, stay or dine at Woodlands, please call first to avoid disappointment.
By Sandy Ludinski
174 Seminary Rd