About This Listing
A compact studio in the back garden. A heavily renovated old 1930s garden shed actually, about 4x2m in size with a deck of similar size in front facing the north (sun).
Contains a sofa bed not a bed bed, albeit the most comfy sofa bed I could find.
NOTE: While it's a lovely little studio, the occasional guest does not read very well and so right at the top here very clearly:
1) The studio is small, 2m x 4m. Comfortable but small.
2) It has a sofa bed in it, not a bed. It is the most comfortable sofa bed I could find after literally lying down on every one for sale in a furniture store in Hobart on a long day's shopping. But, it is a sofa bed and flat measures 110cm x 180cm while a standard double measures 135cm x 188cm. The space is multipurpose and (see 1 and the title, compact, so we don't have a double bed in there).
If either of these realities don't suit you, read no further, find somewhere else. We'd love to help you, but this is all we have to offer in this cosy little studio.
Down to business:
I have for years hosted helpers in a lovely little studio in my garden that is quite popular and appreciated. I do this via the help exchange (another website) mostly but I get WWOOFers too and word of mouth drop ins.
I don't ask them for money. I ask for help around the house, I'm landscaping, gardening building, have a house to maintain and can always use skilled visitors.
After many requests however and understanding that lots of folk really like the space but some prefer to pay, not help, I have accepted money to contribute to my costs instead.
And so they have encouraged an airbnb listing and I'd like to try this out.
I can host you in a small studio in the back garden (which sleeps 2 comfortably, sharing one double sofa bed), which has a deck over a nice lawn, reasonable views over the valley (albeit with our house and it's less than beautiful roof as the centrepiece of the view) and a fairly large kid's playground containing all sorts of equipment.
Take note, this is a sofa bed, and after two years of people sleeping on such, I can honestly say that most report that they are fine, but for some they are not so comfortable. For which reason I'm now on the third and best brand spanking new sofa bed I could find that fits the space in the hope that no-one is left uncomfortable, but truth is, it is ... a sofa bed, and that will never be a bed bed.
I am also very open to feedback and will try to alter the sleeping arrangements if possible, perhaps placing a double mattress on the floor in place of a sofa bed for the duration of a stay or offering another room in the house.
There's a cubby house (which could sleep one or two kids as well) which I'd rent for a little extra paying most of the money into my (10 year old) daughter's account, teaching her a little about money in the process. The cubby has a deck on top also which is a lovely vantage point for kids games and offers better views than the deck on the studio, the best we have from the property even, over the Derwent Valley.
Now the whole place is a little rustic and compact, it's nice, and many rave about it, but it's not large and it's not a 4 star hotel either, and above all the playground and cubby are not what I'd describe as paranoid 21st century kidsafe and and I'll expect you take care of your own children, if any, and ask you to sign off on that. It's not dangerous, it's just a playground like I grew up on, and hence it's built partly out of play equipment from that generation, monkey bars, trampoline (the old kind without safety netting), climbing frame, swings, sandpit, slide, water slide and such and is on the terraced side of hill and hence has moderate drops here and there between levels.
There are also a pile of lawn games and activities supported, from Boules, to Croquet, Totem Tennis, Soccer, Quoits, Badminton and the list goes on, all on a lawn terrace only 15m x 5m in size (the playground is beside it).
A small orchard surrounds the studio with an apple tree, a pear tree, a plum tree, raspberries, and more ... We also keep chickens ( usually 3) that lay eggs for us.
The whole site is north facing and receives all day sun, the studio and cubby house are well renovated and insulated.
We have only on-street parking, but are close to bus lines, only 3.5km form the CBD, about 45 mins walk or 10 mins on a bicycle. I can provide bicycles, again rustic, but functional. There's a cheap airport shuttle, the ten buck bus that should get your to and from the airport cost effectively if you have no car of your own. We're uphill form town, so getting in on foot or bike is easy and getting home is a little effort.
We'll be sharing the kitchen and bathroom of our house, and eating together as we choose, or not. Half the time I'd say I'm a family man and have routine 6:30 dinners on the table, the other half I'm in and out and running about getting stuff done.
I live with Dani, a mathematician/physicist and security guard who speaks English and Serbian. I have a 10 year old daughter, Gypsy Anna who lives with me half the time (for whom the cubby is built and who likes with her friends to stage plays on the deck of the studio to an audience seated on the lawn). And finally Dani and I have a son Leon, born in July of 2013 who lives with us full time.
The house has an open plan living space (kitchen, dining, and living areas all one large open sunny space).
We have an abundant collection of games, and I founded the Hobart Games Society ((website hidden)) in 2004 and hosted all it's events here until 2011. It now meets in public halls having outgrown the space, which can comfortably host events for up to 30 or so people (every winter we have a Midwinter feast with about that many).
The studio itself is about 4m x 2m internally with a deck of similar size in front, and the cubby is very compact, but can sleep one or two small children in a rather adventurous way (fairly tight).
Finally, we keep chickens in a run behind the Studio, and they are let range free from time to time as well,. Four at present, that supply us with eggs, and the children with some exposure to animal husbandry having raised from chicks on occasion.
Note: If I'm not at home when you check in, don't worry, just go around to the back of the house, find the the Studio (you can't miss it!) and it'll be set up for you with a welcome booklet, fresh bedding and towel, refreshments and a key which will provide you with access to the bathroom and kitchen until such time as I get home.
The studio has power, lights, heating, wired and wireless internet.
Water is available on the deck in front of it.
A small selection of teas and instant coffee, kettle and mugs are all in the Studio itself as is all bedding (sheets, doonas, pillows etc.)
Bathroom and toilet, kitchen and laundry in the house are all yours to use whenever you need within the ordinary constraints of sharing with the family.
I keep bicycles for guests to use.
Under circumstances I have a car I can loan to you, but cannot promise up front.
Interaction with Guests
We are mostly sociable and gregarious often share meals with guests and invite them to join our family play (two children of our own and neighborhood friends).
1) We don't oblige you to be social, if you want privacy, solitude and quiet it is available in the Studio.
2) There are times when we may be scarce, due to work and social commitments and/or tired and worn out between those and not feeling so interactive. Apologies in advance, but I don't think this is too common and never unfriendly.
An inner city suburb. 3.5km from the centre of the city (walking it is Hobart, North Hobart, Mount Stuart). Fairly typical of Australian suburbs with roughly quarter acre blocks and houses on them.
Mount Stuart is a hill of course and we're perfectly situated on it for our our tastes, on the north side (facing the sun, a commodity in Tasmania most of the year), high enough that we look over the houses across the street and at the Derwent Valley but not so high that cycling or walking home is a real bother. That said it is uphill and for some (fitness depending) that will still be a slog to walk or ride up, but there is a steep approach directly from town and a more gentle approach around the hill too.
The only downside of our location, and we love it in most every other way, is that we are on a through road and hence a trafficked street. The traffic however is mild, and suburban (50kph) and focused on the peak hours with most of the day and night very quiet. it is not an arterial road, just a suburban through road as opposed to a cul de sac.
It's easy to walk into town (30-45 mins) or the North Hobart cafe shopping strip (15 mins) or the Lenah Valley shops (7 mins) or a bus stop (1 or 2 mins).
I offer bicycles and it's a 10min ride into town and 20-30mins back (up the hill ;-).
Buses are OK, not great, but functional. I find them a tad expensive and irregular for the short journey to town, but they do run and we are close to a major arterial commuting stretch (maybe 2 mins walk).
A taxi to/from town costs maybe $8 and to/from the airport perhaps $50. An airport bus costs about $15 and can drop off close to our place, the better the mood of the driver the closer they'll drop ;-).
Hobart has plenty of cheap car rental places, just check a phone book.
Other Things to Note
We keep chickens. Four of them. They are pretty quiet but live behind the studio.
We're pretty easy going.
I ask the following of guests who share our living space however.
1) Shoes off when entering the house or studio please.
2) One bathroom between us all. A child and working man with places to get to in the morning and a bedtime to deal with of an evening and hence respectful use of bath facilities around rush hour is requested. Keep lengthy and leisurely bath routines outside of rush hours.
3) The kitchen is fairly open and am happy to share it. It is useful for guests to know that I cherish my knives. They are sharp and well balanced and I'd like to keep them that way so I have a separate knife block for guests. Mine are silver (steel) or white (ceramic), yours are black (handled).
4) After bed time (Gypsy Anna at 8) noise ought to be kept to a fairly ordinary suburban level. Loud music played from the studio could be disruptive.
Aside from that almost anything within reason goes. There's a welcome book in the Studio with all the advice I can think you'd need on how to settle in, and make yourself at home and what to respect in the process.
We stayed for one week in bernds studio and had a good time. The sofa-bed was comfy and the studio is big enough for two people. Bernd and his family were really nice and it was no problem to use the kitchen, bathroom and washingmashine. It is a good location to explore Hobart and surroundings. Thank you!
The room was quaint and cozy (there's a heater inside if it gets too cold) and the sofa bed was comfortable for a good night's sleep. It was a rather lengthy walk to and from the house for me but the view along the way (from the hill top) was always breath-taking. Detailed instructions left by Bernd (where the sheets were kept, bathroom etiquette, how to get around) were simple to understand. Truly an experience that made my Hobart visit more enjoyable than it already was.
We really enjoyed our stay. The room was clean and quiet and a short stroll to North hobart restaurants. Bernd and his family are very friendly and accommodating we felt right at home.
Bernd was very accommodating. He accepted my request last minute after I had a very late change of plans. The studio room was nice and the bed was comfortable. His family is very sweet as well.
Bernd is a great host! He has a beautiful family, and is very friendly. Staying in the studio was a cool experience, it was great. The only negative would be the uncomfortable bed, it's quite short and stiff. I would definitely come back and stay again, it's a lovely area and Bernd can answer any question you throw his way! Also, the use of bikes was a huge benefit!
Yes, the bed is a compromise, I agree. Alas it's such a small space while we have mused over a real bed, we want to keep it more multifunctional and a double bed would almost fill the studio! It is compact ;-).
And so as sofa beds go, this one is a little smaller than a double, but they all were when I went shopping and we three other style sin the house to base our experience on and they tend never to be, a bed.
Shopping for the best one we could find I was reminded of those we already have as I tried them out one by one with Dani smiling as I lay down and rolled around, and I was reminded of Goldilocks and this one was too hard, and this one too soft, and this one too lumpy and this one too ... and I admit if you can find one that's just right you hit the sofa bed jackpot, but I worry that "just right" is going to be one of those, can't please all of the people things.
Notably because I personally favour stiffer rather than softer beds and Meaghan's experience reminds me that this bias may have affected our shopping choice mildly. But to its credit this sofa bed is uniformly flat and a little firm, and has no lumpy structural bit down the middle or across it.
Still the very last thing we ever want is a surprise, and hence I value honest reviews like this immensely and we went to some lengths to make sure we are clear in the description that it's a sofa bed and listed the dimensions and the dimensions of a double, but I am reminded that the photos need updating as they are of the previous sofa bed, which most agreed was less comfortable! But which is still available in our home ;-). It had a lumpy wooden edge a third away the length, alas.
So on my todo list is to update photos.
Bernd and his family were very welcoming and the description of the accomodation was accurate. Read it carefully though to make sure these facilities suit your needs as they did mine. The room is small as is the fold-down bed. The facilities appear very spartan until you remember that you have the use of the bathroom and fridge in the house as well. All this is described by the host on the website. The walk into town is pleasant but the return would be an effort. I used the very handy bus service in concert with the Metro Tas app.
This host has 2 reviews for other properties.View Other Reviews
About the Host, Bernd
I admit I'm a little tired of filling out "about me" boxes when I'm already plastered all over the web (Bernd Wechner).
For what it's worth here, if a stream of words can do any justice, I have a daughter (since 2003), a son (since 2013), ride a bike, manage sales for a software company, founded a games club, am a moderately famous hitch-hiker by some measures (am apparently a star - on IMDB), speak Esperanto (which airbnb doesn't have in its rather short list of languages you can speak), keep chickens (which airbnb doesn't list as animals you can keep), have traveled extensively (about a decade on and off the road around the planet), believe in and work toward building and maintaining community, am divorced and remarried (de facto), generally healthy and reasonably fit, hold two degrees in engineering (mechanical and IT&T), am passionately interested in society and justice (and hence politics) ... and probably a whole lot more than that.
The most obvious building in the area, we look out on the hospital from our living space and are a short walk form its bus stop. Good for orienting yourself.
The nearest local mini supermarket, where we get most of fresh produce.