Accommodations You Can Afford

The Amaroo Park YHA, 97 Church St., Cowes (& 03/5952 2548; fax 03/5952 3620; has campsites and dorms beds for A$12 (US$7.80), doubles for $45 (US$29), family rooms with shared bathroom for A$61 (US$40), family rooms with bathroom for A$79 (US$51), and cabins, also for A$79 (US$51). Ask about packages.

Penguin Hill Country House B&B This private home with views over sheep paddocks to Bass Strait is within walking distance of the Penguin Parade. Each room has good views and is stocked with antiques (as is much of the house) and queen-size beds. Two have an attached bathroom with shower, and the third has a private bathroom across the hall. There's a TV and a phone in the cozy lounge. The hosts can pick you up from Cowes.

At Backbeach and Ventnor roads. (RMB 1093, Cowes, Phillip Island, VIC 3922). &/fax 03/5956 8777. 3 units. A$130 (US$85) double. Rates include cooked breakfast.AE, MC,V. Not suitable for children. Amenities: TV lounge; tour desk; business center; room service (7am—11pm); coin-op laundry; nonsmoking rooms. In room: TV, fax, hair dryer, iron.

Worth a Splurge

Rothsaye on Lovers Walk The penguins are just down the road, and the beach is right on the doorstep—who could ask for anything more? The two suites here are adjacent to the owner's home, and the one-bedroom cottage is set slightly apart. All rooms come with antiques and king-size beds. You also get a fruit basket, free fishing gear, beach chairs and umbrellas, magazines, and fresh flowers. Lovers Walk, a romantic floodlit path, leads from the doorstep to the center of Cowes. The owners also have a new beachside property nearby called Abaleigh on Lovers Walk. The two gorgeous apartments here come with a kitchen, barbecue, and good water views. They cost A$215 (US$140) a night. 2 Roy Ct., Cowes 3922. &/fax 03/5952 2691. 4 suites, 1 cottage. A$140—A$190 (US$91—US$124) suite; A$130—A$170 (US$85—US$111) cottage. Breakfast is included. MC, V. Children not allowed. Amenities: Golf course nearby; tour desk; laundry; nonsmoking rooms. In room: A/C (portable), TV/VCR, kitchen, coffeemaker, hair dryer, iron.

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Antique Collecting

Antique Collecting

ABOUT fifty years ago, when the subject of English furniture first began to be studied and to be written about, it was divided conveniently into four distinct types. One writer called his books on the subject The Age of Oak, The Age of Walnut, The Age of Mahogany and The Age of Satinwood. It is not really quite as simple as that, for each of the so-called Ages overlaps the others and it is quite impossible to lagt down strict dates as to when any one timber was introduced or when it finally, if ever, went out of favour.

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