It speaks volumes for the ambitious Berkelouw family, whose venerable book trading business spans six generations, that they were never going to allow themselves to be left on the shelf.
True to form, there's a new addition (edition?) to the clan's picturesque and ever-expanding Bendooley Estate property, featuring the famous Book Barn book store, outside the Southern Highlands NSW colonial-era heritage town of Berrima, less than an hour-and-a-half's drive south of Sydney.
It's collection of new light-filled one, two and three-bedroom cottages is each clad in sustainable Australian hardwood and with private verandahs. They complement Bendooley's Estate existing boutique vineyard, restaurant and separate cellar door-cum-tasting room, framed by a spectacular and original John Olsen painting.
Each of the quintet of cottages - Henry Lawson, Banjo Patterson, Patrick White, Norman Lindsay and May Gibbs - are named in honour of a famous Australian author with books and biographies of each included in each accommodation for the enjoyment of guests (the existing Book Barn Cottage is to be fully renovated and reopened this year).
Paul Berkelouw, owner of Bendooley Estate and a member of the eponymous book trading family, sought inspiration for the new cottages, a long-held ambition for the property, from his European travels.
"I was taken by the rustic beauty and unique vibe of the Soho Farmhouse in Oxfordshire," he says, "and I really admire the eclectic flair of Kit Kemp's Firmdale Hotels."
No two cottages at Bendooley Estate, a popular wedding venue, are alike with each decorated in bespoke wallpaper, upholstered bedheads, eclectic furnishings and bathrooms featuring hand-made tiles, marble vanities and deep free-standing baths, perfect from which to dip into a tome or two from the Book Barn, a mere stroll away.
Rates for the new Bendooley Estate cottages, which are due to open this month, start from $295 per night for a one-bedroom cottage for stays Monday to Wednesday. See bendooleyestate.com.au