Mudgee’s new Visitor Information Centre isn’t just bricks and mortar: it shows an increasingly sophisticated regional destination coming of age.
Opened in the spring of 2021, Mudgee’s new Visitor Information Centre has set a new standard for the welcome experience: maintaining the authentic country hospitality the Mudgee Region is known for, while capturing the contemporary appeal of this regional NSW gem, recently recognised as Australia’s Top Tourism Town.
“Our new Visitor Information Centre is the heart of our region, a beautiful space within the new Mudgee Arts Precinct, for visitors and our community to immerse themselves and engage with local experts to elevate their exploration of the region,” says Leianne Murphy, acting CEO of Mudgee Region Tourism.
Located three and a half hours’ drive from Sydney, the Mudgee Region has cultivated a reputation as a sophisticated regional food and wine destination. The challenge in designing a new welcome space for visitors was showcasing the breadth and depth of the region’s offering, from the vibrant heritage villages of Gulgong, Rylstone and Kandos, to its ever-increasing accommodation offerings and wellness experiences, to the packed calendar of intimate local events. But it also had bigger ambitions: to make visitors feel the love from the region.
“Over time, new experiences started to grow across the region. We knew we had to create an environment for visitors and locals that truly reflected the region’s offering. It was time to think big and fill the space with love from every corner of the region,” says Murphy.
Adjoining the heritage-listed original council chambers, the new building is a juxtaposition of old and new, anchored to the colourful past of the region while at the same time embracing the vibrant future ahead. Every aspect of the Mudgee Visitor Centre is designed to create a sense of welcome and help share the love from the region, from its striking rust-red facade to its light-filled interiors to the giant picture window through which passers-by can glimpse the table and chairs that dominates the interior, inviting them to stop awhile.
“The centre is designed to be highly engaging and easily enjoyed. We want visitors to explore it as part of their ‘must do’ destination journey – a place to help optimise their time in the region,” explains Murphy.
A quintessential part of Mudgee’s success as a destination is its people, and they’re positioned at the forefront of the new centre. All guests are greeted by ‘experience experts’; passionate local advocates for the region who offer a concierge-style service, whether it’s recommending a bushwalk in the surrounding National Parks, pointing out a historic hamlet a short drive away or even helping you find a place to listen to music in a local venue.
“They’re not there to just share information, it’s about genuinely welcoming people and making them feel that love,” says Murphy.
The experience experts aim to offer a sense of authenticity; something the region is renowned for. From engaging encounters with local artisans to intimate conversations with makers and growers, Mudgee’s contemporary country hospitality often invokes a sense of connection and keeps visitors coming back.
“As local ambassadors for the region, our community has always embraced visitors, making them feel welcome or having a yarn about their favourite places to explore”, says Murphy. “The new Visitor Information Centre will encourage guests to uncover even more of the region – and feel the love from remarkable locals. It truly is the heart of Mudgee.”
Mudgee Hampers: Take a piece of Mudgee home or send it as a gift
Known for its heavenly food and wine scene, Mudgee Region Visitor Information Centre has established both an in-house and online retail hamper service showcasing an incredible collection of local produce.
Guests can take home a pre-made hamper or create their own from a bespoke selection of local wines, craft brews, distilled drinks, cheese platter enhancers, art, homeware and books to take home or gift to a loved one. These heavenly hampers come with a ‘love note’ from a local maker sharing their origin story and connecting the recipient to the region, all while supporting local businesses.
Newly renovated Mudgee accommodation
Set on 12 hectares of gorgeous gardens in the heart of Mudgee, Parklands Resort is designed for relaxation and comfort. Parklands offers the ideal base to explore Mudgee Region with recently renovated rooms, two-bedroom apartments, family suites and pet friendly accommodations.
With a swimming pool, tennis court, fitness centre and free wi-fi, ‘sipping’ into summer is a breeze with a 15 per cent saving when you stay three nights or more, and they’ll even throw in a full buffet breakfast at onsite fine dining venue Vine Restaurant & Bar and a bottle of local Mudgee wine. parklandsresort.com.au, 02 6372 4500.