Pen-y-bryn Lodge was built as a private residence in 1889 by the famed architectural firm of Forrester & Lemon for local businessman John Bulleid and his wife, Fanny. Pen-y-bryn is Welsh for “Top of the Hill” and indeed the house sits atop South Hill, one of Oamaru’s most sought-after districts. Reputed to be the largest single-storey timber dwelling in Australasia, the house has kept true to its Victorian heritage and today offers discerning guests the perfect combination of old world elegance and modern amenities.
James Glucksman and James Boussy (aka “the Jameses”) are your hosts, and have owned Pen-y-bryn since August 2010. Born in the United States, and New Zealand citizens as of September 2018, the Jameses have lived and traveled all over the world but have decided to make their home in Oamaru and are eager to show off their adopted home town to their guests.
James Glucksman had a career in international management consulting and healthcare for more than 20 years, living and working in more than forty countries all over the world. Fluent in Russian and Mandarin Chinese, and with a very good knowledge of French, Spanish and German (as well as some limited Japanese and Hungarian), James’ first love was always fine food and wine. He is a member of the Slow Food movement (the international organisation that promotes local and sustainable foods) and is Chancelier Honoraire of New Zealand branch of the Confrérie de la Chaîne des Rôtisseurs, the Paris-based gourmet society.
James Boussy was trained as a dentist, and practiced in the US state of Virginia for 15 years before moving his practice to Beijing. James is also a highly skilled baker, gardener and home renovator, and has made a name for himself among his friends for the exquisite gingerbread houses that he used to create as the centrepiece of the Jameses’ annual Christmas party.
The Jameses have a long history of hosting dinner parties for their friends, showcasing recipes and wines they picked up during their travels. Now those skills are put to work creating a dinner-party atmosphere for guests at the lodge, and their international food experiences now help inform some of the dishes they serve.
On a personal note, we are big dog lovers and have two dogs who are available for “counselling” services if you are missing your own dogs while you’re staying with us. The Labradoodle in the photo above is no longer with us, but we have a young Labradoodle puppy, George, who is more than happy to spend time with guests who are looking for some canine companionship. Ivan, the Shetland Sheepdog, is a bit older and while he appreciates a pat he’s a bit more standoffish, in typical Sheltie fashion.