Eungella Chalet owner Tony Murray is happy to be back in business six months after Cyclone Ului struck.
Eungella Chalet owner Tony Murray is happy to be back in business six months after Cyclone Ului struck. Lee Constable

Chalet back in business

ONE of the Pioneer Valley’s greatest tourist attractions, the Eungella Chalet, is well and truly back in business after a six-month closure caused by Cyclone Ului.

The historic chalet was one of the worst casualties during the March 21 cyclone, with parts of its roof torn off and significant structural and water damage.

But the disaster provided the opportunity for chalet owner Tony Murray to renovate the iconic building, which re-opened on September 21.

He extended the eating area and dining room, added a new kitchen, new bars and big glass windows, revamped the toilets, repainted, changed the entrance and crafted the chalet’s tables and chairs from Eungella timber.

Mr Murray’s colleague Tess Ford said the closure had been difficult but worthwhile.

“It’s a very long time for a business to be closed, though we were still running the cabins during that time,” Ms Ford said.

“It’s been a very big challenge to get it reopened... lots and lots and lots of work.

“Out of bad things good things come.

“There’s been some really great people that have stuck by us and held us up by the collar a few times.

“It’s had a really big facelift and it’s a much more structurally sound building now.

“A lot of the locals have been coming through (since we reopened) and everyone’s suitably impressed.”

Ms Ford said the chalet was popular with tourists and locals who wanted to kick back and enjoy its spectacular views with a cuppa or stiff drink.

“There’s not too many places you can go to and sit and have lunch in the clouds.

“It can be quite a romantic experience.”

The chalet, which is licensed from 10am to midnight, serves lunch between 10am and 2pm and dinner from 6pm to 8pm. It also serves all-day snacks.

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