A MANSION built off the back of a gold discovery in the 1850s is up for sale for the first time in two decades.
Koendidda, which is south of Barnawartha just off the Indigo Creek Road, has been put on the market for $3.5 million.
Since the 1980s it has been a bed and breakfast with a focus on upmarket travellers in recent times.
Wodonga lawyer John Potter said he had decided after 20 years of ownership the time was right for somebody else to become the custodian of the estate which includes surrounding farmland.
"Three and half a months ago I got to 80 and I considered the continued development of Koendidda would be best left to a young couple," Mr Potter said.
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"I've owned it for longer than anyone else, other than the Pooley family who built Koendidda in 1863 and then sold in 1977."
The double-storey residence was built after Cornish immigrant Humphrey Pooley, who arrived in Australia dirt poor, had his dream of finding gold become a reality.
He had a vision in his sleep that he would discover gold under a tree at Allans Flat and then dug in that area and unearthed a nugget that allowed him to build Koendidda.
Over 330,000 bricks were made on site with nearby clay and Mr Potter said the quality of the process used had ensured the longevity of the mansion.
"The amazing thing about Koendidda is in the old days there weren't any building regulations and one of the great saviours is that it was put together with lime mortar as opposed to concrete mortar which is so rigid and can crack," Mr Potter said.
"The lime mortar gives and there's not cracks in the building and it will go for another 100 years."
Like all accommodation businesses, Koendidda has endured some fallout from COVID-19.
However, Mr Potter believes it has a bright future with cashed-up city tourists unable to travel overseas likely to be drawn to it.
"Koendidda is a high-class, boutique hotel and it represents one of the places people will go to," Mr Potter said.
"We call Koendidda, the place it is in, the Tuscany area of North East Victoria because you've got the wineries and the mountains."
COVID forced Mr Potter to close down Wodonga Travel and Cruise agency, the oldest enterprise of its type in the city.
"It just wiped out the travel business, even in mid-March, with the advent of coronavirus being overseas, there were no bookings for overseas travel by ship or plane," Mr Potter said.
"We had a very good business but people can't get out of the country, they're not allowed out of the country."