Beleura House & Garden
Beleura House & Garden
4.5
Tuesday
9:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM - 4:00 PM
About
Beleura House and Garden is a heritage listed Italianate Classic Villa and gardens and includes a recital centre with an annual program of performances and concerts by some of Australia's finest musicians. Beleura is one of the finest and oldest homes on the Mornington Peninsula. It was the home of composer John Tallis and houses a personal collection of art, artefacts, cars and household memorabilia. Twelve acres of gardens of Beleura offer visitors a variety of garden rooms and landscapes to explore and discover Beleura is open to full day tours and morning tours of the gardens and house booked through the Beleura website. Visitors must book to gain entry.
Duration: 2-3 hours
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4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles48 reviews
Excellent
37
Very good
10
Average
0
Poor
0
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1

Grace
3 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2022
My friend & I attended the first concert staged at the garden courtyard in
B eleura House 2022. They featured a tenor, a soprano, & a accompany pianist.
The three of them staged an enchanting concert of popular songs from well known stage musicals. What with sparkling wine on arrival & coffee/tea with a huge vairety of cakes afterwards, it was the normal high standard of Beleura one expects. We all had a magic afternoon, going away humming the tunes. I definitely recommend a visit , regardless of the program, if just to stroll thru the beautiful garden & the heritage listed house.
Written 25 February 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Peter S
Rome, Italy4,449 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2021
Review covers Beleura House & Gardens, Mornington, Victoria

We had started our visit to Beleura House & Gardens that Thursday following the instructions given to meet the courtesy bus in the car park at the Mornington Golf Club about five minutes away by road. There were nine of us in our U3A group sharing an exploratory day out. As the different people arrived and parked, they drifted over to the entrance/foyer of the restaurant where there was a blue 12-seater bus that looked promising. There was time to use the toilets inside and, importantly, to check out the restaurant/menu/vista through the windows – gorgeous images of Port Phillip Bay across the golf course – endless blue sky, scudding clouds and wind in the trees close into the building. The prospects of lunch following our visit seemed an excellent idea – extending the day and, importantly, taking time out to appreciate where we were and what we had seen and learned.
The bus dropped us off at Beleura House for just after 09.30 that morning and, three hours later, returned us to the golf club. We had originally planned our visit for the previous year – 2020: a year that will subsequently be known as the ‘First Year of Lockdown’ by all who experienced it. (Who would have figured the same for 2021 – we had no idea at the time.) Covid-19 had put the house and gardens out of reach for >8 months and we were amongst the first post-pandemic lockdown visitors – the house & garden sparkled in the bright morning sunlight – clean, polished and welcoming.
The property offered this tantalising opportunity of revisiting the past through the lives and times of the people who had once been associated with the house, gardens and adjacent land – the entrepreneurs, merchants, farmers, politicians and, perhaps the most interesting group – the entertainment moguls/literati/cognoscenti. Imagine, there’s this 160 year old Italianate villa halfway down the Mornington peninsula - a world away from the much larger Italian peninsula. Equally, the villa had been built just a couple of years after the unification of the Italian state (in 1861).
Start with that unusual name: ‘Beleura’ House was built by the Scotsman James Butchart following a highly successful period as a pastoralist/businessman in the Western District – in Central West Victoria – in the shadow of the extinct volcano Mt Leura wherein Butchart worked and lived during his first years in the colony from 1842-on. Fortune in-hand, Butchart followed/led the trend of other wealthy Melburnians by shifting to a villa on Mornington Peninsula; he named his villa after the view across Port Phillip Bay to the impressive You Yangs – the line of hills/mountains south of Werribee.*
Butchard enjoyed just six years there before his death, and the succession of other owners/occupants/guests moved in. Of these it is, perhaps, the Tallis Family with their subsequent links to local, national and then world-entertainment-industries that have come to dominate popular interest in subsequent years. The memories, people and their times featured within the stories of the house and gardens that remain from the visit.
The bus had dropped us off at an annex/reception building to one side of Beleura House. It was time for our introduction to the tour, to meet the three guides that were available and, one of the highlights of the morning, to share morning tea, to talk one-with-the-other and to follow the introduction to the ‘World of the Successful Colonialists of the 19th-20th Centuries’ - Beleura House represented a window on ‘Marvellous Melbourne’. The reception room was large, quiet, full of light and welcoming. We sat at small round tables and were served by a small army of waitresses. Emphasis ‘comfort’; the morning tea/scones/cakes were good.
Tea (or coffee) finished and the introduction over the 12 of us were separated into three groups - each with a guide. We left the reception building the way we had come, crossed a patch of garden and into Beleura House by way of the kitchen. A large sign outside said: ‘No photographs inside’. Only for the brave then.
The inside reflected the origins of the Victorian heritage of the late 19th Century – large proportions, drapes, covers, furnishings, images and colours – as if you were a time traveller back into the (wealthy) times of great-grandmother. Again, priority ‘comfort’ comes to mind, if not overwhelmed with the quantity of furnishing – all that space that had to be filled with something – real time capsule country.
Except … the last private owner of Beleura House - John Tallis - the youngest of the children of the original buyer George Tallis - kept abreast of the modern developments required of bathrooms/latrines, kitchens/cuisine preparation and radio; there seemed neither space nor any intention of maintaining the servant-based/utilities that would have featured 100 years earlier.
Beleura House became an end-in-itself for the older John Tallis and he maintained it with enthusiasm and, apparently, an open chequebook. There was a sense that the place has remained as it was at the time of John Tallis’ passing in the mid-1990s – with those period-piece utilities, light fittings, plumbing, kitchen equipment and more.
The house and garden shifted to public-ownership as a place of historic and educational interest for the people of Victoria; with a parallel foundation set up in support of creative young people. Follow the guide through the house and the inside tour ended with entry into the garden in front of the Italianate portico/terrazza – here were all those public images that tend to dominate the publicity material. The covered terrace extends across the front of the house and around the corners either side – it shades and darkens the front; once outside, looking back, it dominates the small proportions of the house. There is a rectangle of grass set in front of the house which, presumably, would have handled the horse&buggy of those original 19th Century travellers. It looked small for modern traffic. Cross the grass and the formal style of the Italian-garden (?) – hedges, shrubs, dedicated flower gardens dotted with formal masonry can be explored.
There was less information provided by the guide at this stage and people wandered in groups, couples or by themselves around the garden at the front of the house – layout, ornaments/furniture and into and out of the areas of plants/shrubs/vegetation without specific information of what we were exploring. We knew from the literature/brochures of the mix of gardens that had been established over the years – the creativity of the one linking into the next and, importantly, to the history of the house and the different people who had once lived there. The gardens that we saw were formal – perhaps representing the pleasure that comes from extending the interior of the house/furnishings into the natural world outside.
There are >5 ha of gardens, however, and we had neither the time nor guidance to see more; we had perhaps just 20 minutes in which to explore the statuettes dotted amongst the shrubs and lawns out front. Next time then. (But if you’re not prepared to wait … there’s a five minutes glimpse of the gardens courtesy of Paul Dalle Nogare on YouTube. Type in some key words.)

Peter Steele
12Jan22

*‘Beleura’. According to Pru Evans in her ‘The Genesis of Beleura’ (2016) the name was derived from ‘Bel’ as in ‘Bella Vista’ (i.e. ‘Beautiful View’ in English) and ‘Leura’ (after ‘Mt Leura’ that towers over Camperdown in Western Victoria. Butchard saw similarities in the profiles of Mt Leura and the You Yangs.
Written 15 January 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Lyn G
9 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2021 • Couples
We done the guided house, luncheon and guided garden tour. Everything stood out as perfect
The greeting, the info, the guides, the house and the gardens were all excellent. Highly recommend a visit
Written 4 March 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Judith M
262 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2019 • Couples
This estate now managed by the National Trust is maintained in excellent order and is an intrinsic part of Melbourne history as well
As the Mornington Peninsula. The first residence of Victoria’s Governor - while the official residence was under construction in Melbourne- and a residence that welcomed. such notables as Dame Nellie Melba and Charlie Chaplin- it is an historic Italian mansion with many stories to tell. In more recent years additional facilities have been added to capitalise on its links to the arts - music in particular and the impressive Pavilion presents a year round program of cultural events. But for most newcomers to Beleura it is the mansion and the garden tours that present the story. Prior bookings are required and offer many options including stylish refreshments in the sun drenched Melba Room.
Visitors are required to assemble at the nearby MorningtonGolf Club where the Beleura transit bus takes you to and from the estate.
Written 31 August 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

J A
Frankston, Australia23 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2019
A great day starting with a 5 min shuttle bus ride to the 100 acre estate.
The history of this home, garden, it's occupant's and visitors over the years since 1865 was wonderfully told by well researched guides. Time has stood still here since 1996 to be seen as a time capsule of daily life. It was a wintery day and the garden was getting a workout for spring. Worth returning each season to appreciate fully. Delicious sandwiches and cake lunch served by volunteers deserve a mention.
Written 8 August 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Julia C
Melbourne, Australia16 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
June 2019 • Couples
Beleura House offers fabulous musical events having two spectacular pianos It also hosts a good selection of activities which can include a talk then guided tour of the house and garden with tempting sandwiches, etc. & coffee/tea included. There is a lot of history and is really a blast from the past! The garden is quirky, unusual & has additional points of interest for children hidden away. They also hold special events for children in the garden with a tempting food pack at the end for them to eat and it is engaging & certainly holds the childrens interest. One theme is Hansel & Gretel and there is an actual witches cottage to make it all the more realistic for them. They love it. You drive to Mornington Golf Club & are picked up & taken to the House from there. All very easy.
Written 2 July 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Rozpunzle
2 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2019 • Friends
Fascinating house & garden in a 1940s time warp which is beautifully maintained and presented. Staff were excellent. Both the garden & the house tours were a tad rushed but well worth seeing - stunning paintings & furnishings..

Only disappointment was the morning tea - just a cup of stewed tea and a shortbread biscuit - we were expecting a tastier spread - like they would have served in the 1940s !!
Written 31 May 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

fayetrewin
Mornington, Australia13 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2019 • Friends
A recent visit revealed such interesting local history we had previously not been aware of! Beleura is run by dedicated volunteers to see to its garden, homestead and catering for visiting groups. Have to say, the ribbon sandwiches were the most freshest, delicious 'more-ish' ones we have ever eaten!!
Written 14 February 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Penelope K
26 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2018 • Couples
Beleura House and Garden is a must see, if you like your history and antiques. I am sure you can join as a member, where they have concerts of opera, concerto's, and poetry nights. These special events are advertised on their website. The home and gardens are wonderfully maintained.
Written 29 January 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Grace F
Melbourne, Australia31 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2018 • Couples
We attend regular music events throughout the year. The day events usually begin with a tour of the historic Italianate style stately mansion & a walk through the stunning beautiful formal garden This will follow with the concert, then a delicious light lunch. Volunteers & staff are unfailingly welcome & efficient. We do recommend you to log on their website to find out the programs for 2019, & booking is a must. We consider this one of the top mansion to visit. It does not disappoint.
Written 25 December 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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