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Reviewed 15 March 2017

For a two week trip to visit my daughter and her two children in Warrnambool, we chose the High View Family Cottages through Booking.com mainly to keep the cost down. For a total of 12 days we paid under £550, which worked out at a about £45 per night – considerably cheaper than a hotel in town, with all the facilities for home cooking, laundry, etc. Ours was a “budget” cottage, Lodge No 1, which was one half of a low clapboard building and was fully equipped for a family of six for home living. The other half was Lodge No 2, which meant that sounds could travel through the thin walls rather easily. Fortunately our neighbours were quite quiet and friendly, so no problems for us.
The location of the cottages is just west of Warrnambool in a very rural location on a horse complex. This is the primary function of the site, a training and competition location for equestrian events, and the lodge is surrounded by paddocks and rather lovely horses. There is a lot of coming and going of big vehicles towing horse trailers, but this is not intrusive and adds a bit of a “wild west” feel to the place. The position is high up and the sea is visible in the distance, but it does feel quite remote. Finding the farm is not easy, especially as Google maps decided it was on the other side of the road. The entrance is angled back and set well back on the left heading west after a series of bends, with just a small weather-worn sign, and it’s easy to miss.
The owners are really delightful, and Sonja is friendly, welcoming, and is ready to help with any problems or requests. The lodge itself has two bedrooms, one with two sets of bunk-beds, one with an average double bed (note that the budget cottages include a duvet and cover, but do not include any bed linen or towels, you need to bring these yourself); a rather dark washroom complete with two sinks leading to a separate toilet on one side and a shower room on the other; and a very large kitchen/diner/living room. The kitchen area has everything you need for cooking including a good microwave, with a large fridge/freezer and a 4-ring electric cooker. Water for washing is supplied from a bore and drinking water is filtered rain water via a separate tap over the kitchen sink. There is plenty of hot water from the gas water heater, but I suspect this one supply is for both Lodges in the building, which can give rise to some interesting showers if being used at the same time! There are two huge sofas, a large kitchen table with six chairs, and a large flat screen TV with a DVD player. All crockery, cutlery, pots, pans, etc., are provided too. Unfortunately there is no WiFi on site, but we made do with a locally-purchased Optus SIM card that gave us 3Gb of data for connecting to the internet. Mobile signals are very good.
Sadly, when entering the property first impressions were not good. It seems very dated and austere, with rather a “portacabin” feel about it; the sort of thing back-packers would use. But the main problem was the rather unpleasant build-up of cobwebs and dirt around the windows, which gives the impression that the property is very dirty - but this is not so, the floors and carpets were perfectly clean (although best not to look on the top of cupboards). The thing is that there are a LOT of spiders in Australia which spin a lot of webs; this is good for keeping the fly population down though. And being quite windy there is quite a bit of detritus blown about in the air. All windows and doors have mesh screens and these get rapidly clogged up with cobwebs, dust and fluff. Even the wing mirrors on the car were coated with spider webs which seemed par for the course. It all depends on your expectations, but as we are used to a very clean house back in the U.K. We did do a bit of vacuuming around the large window to clear some of the dirt, and cleaned the filters on the vacuum cleaner and the heater/cooler unit. However, this is a budget rental so all the equipment is well past its best. Nevertheless everything worked OK, and apart from requesting a heater for the colder rooms, and some sink plugs which were missing, we really didn’t have any problems. The lighting at night in the living area is very harsh being 2 double neon strip lights, and until the fuse blew we used the light in the cooker hood for some more indirect, lower lighting. I would also mention that the only time we used the oven for cooking pizzas, clouds of smoke came out of it so obviously the cooker needed a good clean too. The mattress on the double bed is quite firm and not the highest quality, but we slept OK once we had got used to it.
All in all, this is a very reasonably priced self-catering option which represents great value especially for larger families. Expect old equipment, rusty fridges, antiquated washing machine, but in the final analysis this is a place that might suit the budget traveller, especially those with a large family.

Room Tip: If you can afford it, go for the luxury cottages. The budget ones are very rough and ready.
  • Stayed: February 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Thank John080347
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 January 2017

We just finished our family holiday around Victoria and staying in Steve and Sonja's cottages was a highlight for us and our kids. The view is spectacular, the rooms were comfortable and convenient and the kids had a great time playing on the farm. We would definitely go back.

  • Stayed: January 2017, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
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Thank matt l
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 August 2016 via mobile

Lovely little lodge, on a huge property with horses and friendly dogs. It's pet friendly though no fences around lodge so you need have pets on leads or know your pet won't run away. Heating was good and very spacious. It doesn't come any linen, towels etc or shampoos but that's in advert. Only 5-10 min from main part Warrnambool. Awesome and cheaper then your usual main prices. Way bigger and friendly people.

Stayed: August 2016, travelled with family
Thank Alisha M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 May 2016

The lady that runs the cottages is lovely. I accidentally booked for a month later than the day we turned up. She happily cleaned a cottage for us and transferred all the details. The cottages are clean, well heated and comfortable. My daughter and I have a keen interest in horses and the lady to our surprise came to get us when it was feeding time for them all and let us help. It was a quiet location and a great country feeling. The only issue I had was the bed. My husband slept well but I found it a bit springy. It was very well priced. I would stay there again without hesitation.

  • Stayed: April 2016, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Thank Katerina M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
High-ViewSonja, Owner at High View Family Cottages, responded to this reviewResponded 25 May 2016

Hi there, thank you so much for your lovely review. It was a pleasure to meet you and your family and we would love to see you again some day :)

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Reviewed 17 April 2016

Very warm welcome on arrival. We stayed in one of the lodges on the farm which was clean, adequate and good value. Great place to stay if you love animals, especially horses and great views of the local area. A short drive to Warrnambool and so close to local amenities and restaurants. A good starting point before embarking on the Great Ocean Road.

  • Stayed: March 2016, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank RKfamily
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
High-ViewSonja, Owner at High View Family Cottages, responded to this reviewResponded 25 May 2016

Thank you for your very kind review :) Hope to see you again someday.

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