TUCKED away at the end of a country lane is the beautiful, quirky Thelma Retreat. Kevin and Beryl Miller have lived on the Raminea property, 6km south of seaside Dover, for decades, bringing up a family of seven children. It is named after Kevin’s mother Thelma. “She was a sweet, lovely lady,” Beryl said. “After her husband passed we came to live on the property with her and I think she would love the way we have developed it, fi rst with the accommodation and then the tea house.
“We like to share what we have here. It is a joy to have people come visit when on holiday from all over the world.”
The Millers converted part of the large home into a self- contained apartment for those who wish to experience a little slice of country living.
“The retreat is a place of peace and quiet and those who stay there always feel refreshed,” Beryl said.
Beryl hasn’t always had a green thumb, but she said over the past few years she has loved spending time in their expansive gardens. She has a large, ever- expanding garden of fragrant roses, a fl ower garden, shrubs and trees, lavender and lilies.
The family’s wholefood teahouse serves homemade, healthy food such as organic teas and coffee, fresh fruit and vegetable juices and breads, pies and bakery items made from organic grain they grind in a stone grinder.
“Kevin bought the grinder in the late ’ 70s when we were hoping to start a big family,” Beryl said.
“We have reared our children on homemade bread and it is lovely people are looking for healthy food these days.
“There is some meat on our menu but it’s mostly vegetarian.
“Thelma would be excited to see we serve date scones made with her recipe. People always joke that they need to get a copy of the recipe before they leave.”
In December, Thelma Retreat will host its fi rst open day, featuring music by noted harpist Christina Breen, who lives in the Huon Valley. Bookings for the event quickly sold out. “This is our fi rst musical performance and luncheon and we will defi nitely be doing more in the future,” Beryl said.