Talk about the town

Meet the new managers of Berry Boutique Motel and Pavilion Restaurant

28 Feb 2014

The Berry Boutique Motel in the centre of the historic town of Berry offers a unique combination of luxurious accommodation with in-house dining at its Pavilion Restaurant that provides gourmet home-style cooking.

The Berry Village Boutique Motel has very recently undergone a management change and is now run by a talented couple with years of experience in hospitality and fine food. Samantha Gothard and Shannon White have come to Berry from Rydal in the Blue Mountains, a Trip Advisor top-rated ‘seclusion’ where Samantha also won the Blue Mountains Customer Service Award. Shannon’s 25 years of experience in some of Australia’s top kitchens, including the Sydney Opera House, have given him a keen insight into what works on a menu.

The Motel’s boutique accommodation is extremely popular with corporate customers during the week and is almost always completely booked out on weekends serving the ‘wedding market’ that is thriving in the Berry area. “On average, every week we bring about 250 people into Berry,” Samantha says.

The motel’s stylish rooms are shielded from the street front and provide garden or pool views; there is a large car-parking area, giving a feeling of being removed from the hurly-burly of the highway. The central location of the motel, only a few steps from Berry’s growing array of good restaurants, a unique bottle shop (Justin Lil’s Wines), as well as a wide variety of Berry’s other shops and galleries, makes available to their clients all the diversion anyone could want.

The elegant in-house Pavilion Restaurant, with its smart, white table cloths and black chairs, serves dinner to both house guests and the public from Tuesday through Saturday nights starting at 6.00 pm. Continental breakfast daily, and cooked breakfast on weekends, is also available to all. The Pavilion menu is changed fortnightly, its philosophy being home-style, healthy food from natural produce, largely gluten-free, nothing deep-fried. “After four months in the job we’ve nutted out what works for our customers,” Shannon explains. “Fancy food is not the objective; we aim to serve satisfying, basic good food in generous portions and we are not into flash adjectives or nouvelle cuisine.” An example from the list of entrées is prosciutto-wrapped chipolini sausages with house-made fig jam and pickled onion strips. A signature main course is American Style baby back pork ribs, slowly braised for eight hours, with house-made hickory barbecue sauce. The dessert menu includes a very popular Affogato – a shot of espresso poured over ice cream and served with the liqueur of your choice – Tia Maria, Kahlua, Bailey’s, Drambuie – you choose. The restaurant allows BYO (wine only); otherwise it is fully licensed.

Berry has two pubs but no cocktail bar, and Samantha and Shannon have filled this niche with a cocktail bar at the motel, open all day to the public, offering, among others, such fare as Tequila Margaritas; an Illusion (Midori, Malibu, Cointreau, Blue Curacao, pineapple and orange juice); a Chocolate Eclipse (Frangelico, Baileys, Kahlua, Crème de Cacao, ice cream and milk); and others.

Samantha and Shannon are both very personable and have a Shoalhaven Award for Excellence firmly in their sights.

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