End of an era

PHIL and Loretta McDonald have retired to Tathra after nearly 30 years of dedicated service and fond memories operating the Bega Village Motor Inn. 

The couple celebrated their retirement with family and friends on Monday, before officially handing in the keys on Tuesday.

The McDonalds moved to Bega from Finley in the Riverina region with their three young children in May, 1983.  

New to the motel business and new to the area, they worked hard to become active members of the local community at the same time as providing a high standard of service to all their guests.  

Originally a 15-unit motel, Phil and Loretta extended the motel to 27 units and, in 1991, they added an indoor heated swimming pool. 

The brown and yellow colour scheme of the late 1970s gave way to the peach tones of the ‘80s and ‘90s.  

Recently, an extensive renovation program has been completed, with modern décor and characteristics found in expensive city accommodation now a feature of the motel. 

Phil said his goal to have the best motel in Bega when he retired has been accomplished.

The indoor, heated pool has proven to be a great asset to the community with a variety of groups such as Tulgeen, hydro-exercise classes and children’s Swim and Learn using the pool on a regular basis. 

Doctors, physiotherapists and chiropractors have also referred many patients who have benefitted from the facilities over the years.

Loretta’s welcoming smile has greeted guests and her generosity and grace has been evident to all. 

Her ability to raise a family and attend to the demands of running a business, often behind the scenes is to be admired.  

Loretta was heavily involved in a number of St Patrick’s Primary School and Bega High School voluntary roles, a time of her life that gave her great satisfaction.

Phil and Loretta thank their family and all their staff, many of whom have worked for them for over 20 years.  

The high standard of hospitality provided to guests would not have been possible without the support of such wonderful and loyal staff.  

Phil and Loretta’s motto has always been “friendliness and cleanliness”. 

 “We have enjoyed the hospitality industry immensely and we have met some wonderful people,” Phil said.  

“Many of our customers have become great personal friends.  

“I would also like to take the opportunity to thank all the local businesses who have supported us.”  

As Phil and Loretta begin a retirement of gardening, grandkids and travel, their children Rodney, Antoinette and Christine wish them all the very best for an exciting new future. 

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