Veteran businessman Josef Chromy is something of a legend in Tasmania.
Chromy fled his Czech homeland in 1950 as a penniless 20-year-old but became one of the most influential men in the Tasmanian wine industry.The migrant first made millions through smallgoods and later started several of the state’s leading wineries, including Tamar Ridge and Josef Chromy Wines. He is now also in the hotel business.
Just a few kilometres from his spectacular cellar door facility and on-site restaurant at Relbia, just down the road from Launceston Airport, you'll find the Hotel Charles in Launceston, on the fringe of the CBD.
With many of its rooms offering views of the Tamar River this is a reliably good address that won't break the bank. And it is the perfect gateway to the Tamar Valley and northern Tasmania.
Part of a new complex on the site of what was an old hospital, the building has an Art Deco exterior with modern, well-equipped rooms and apartments at sensible prices.
On-site facilities include a restaurant, guest lounge, function/conference room (for up to 100 delegates), private dining room and boardroom - all with wi-fi/internet connections. The rooms are comfortable and the service extremely helpful. There is also free parking.The on-site Restaurant Esca specialises in using local produce when possible –think dishes like charred venison with sweet potato, garlic and eggplant, or maybe Togarashi-spiced crispy skin salmon with spanner crab, sweet corn and nishiki rice.
Alternatively, the Charles Street café strip with several dining options is just a short stroll away.
Luxurious leather couches and chairs around the fireplace in the hotel lobby provide the ideal spot for a casual meeting, afternoon coffee or evening wine from the predominantly Tasmanian wine list - and there are meeting and conference rooms available for those seeking privacy.
The Charles is one of a number of good Tasmanian addresses owned by Chromy's companies. Also check out the Hotel Collins in Hobart and Franklin Manor in Strahan.Hotel Charles, 287 Charles Street, Launceston. (03) 6337 4100. www.hotelcharles.com.au