When Kim Seagram opened Stillwater, her destination restaurant in Launceston's colonial-era flour mill, she set out to "capture northern Tasmania on a plate". Nearly 20 years later, the Canadian-born Launceston entrepreneur has extended the same brief for travellers, carving out space in the mill for a boutique hotel full of northern Tasmanian character.
Like the restaurant downstairs, the seven rooms of Stillwater Seven are a showcase of local talent: design by Cumulus Studio, beds by Hobart-based AH Beard, woollen throws by Waverley Mills, bathroom products by Lentara Grove, and walls hung with works by local artists. The showpiece curved bar-pantry in each room is made by local artisan Simon Ancher from Tasmanian blackwood, and filled with produce from a rollcall of star regional producers: Coal River Farm cheeses, Tasmanian Butter Co butter, sourdough bread and pre-mixed cocktails by Stillwater, Hazelbrae hazelnuts, and small-batch Tamar Valley wines.
River views and massive old beams dominate rooms, with "pinot pink" or sage-green mosaic-tiled bathrooms and clever use of rough, blackened timber, a nod to the fire that destroyed the mill's roof in 1942.
The focus downstairs in the chic-rustic dining room of Stillwater remains resolutely seasonal and local, the likes of Moulting Bay oysters and Mount Gnomon pork for dinner, and a breakfast Reuben made with local wagyu and sauerkraut.
Stillwater Seven, 2 Bridge Rd, Launceston, Tas, (03) 6331 4153, stillwater.com.au