A few weeks ago, my family went to Abbey of the Roses in Warwick for morning tea and a tour.
The Abbey of the Roses was a former Sisters of Mercy nunnery, and was built in 1891. It was in the hands of the nuns until the late 1980s, when it was sold, and has gone through several iteration in that time. Its current owners bought the Abbey and restored it to its former glory as far as possible, although previous owners had irreversibly destroyed certain aspects of the interior.
The Abbey is huge, so its owners run it as accommodation, a wedding venue and conduct tours to help pay for its upkeep.
My mother booked us in to the morning tea, which comes with scones, jam and cream with tea or coffee. This is a glimpse of the tea room, which used to be a school and dining room for the girls taught by the nuns:
Here is our table's tea tray, laden with scones:
Mmm, a half scone with jam and cream:
The resident cat came to check out my Mum:
then jumped onto the lap of the lady sitting next to me - clearly, it's a shy cat:
After morning tea, the owner of the Abbey takes you on a tour of the downstairs areas (not the upstairs accommodation), with patter about the history of the Abbey and the renovations along the way:
This is the restored chapel, one of my favourite parts of the Abbey:
Look at the gorgeous stained glass windows, which were made in Germany and shipped to Australia in treacle for protection:
There are also extensive gardens surrounding the Abbey that you can walk through after the tour - this large pepper tree is one of the most striking features:
If you happen to be on the Darling Downs in your travels, it is worth making a visit to the Abbey of the Roses - but do remember to book (you can't walk in).
8 Locke Street
Warwick QLD Australia
Ph: (61) 7 4661 9777