Summer Escapes in the UK's Finest Country Stays
fter the Summer Solstice on the 21st June, it’s officially time for the summer holiday. With many of the European hotspots still on the UK’s Amber List, it’s the perfect time to explore what the United Kingdom has on offer, and reducing your carbon footprint in the process. Thanks to the country's diverse landscape - all rural idylls carved by history, wild mountainscapes, and a coastline where the tide ebbs and flows between drama and nostalgia. Staying local doesn’t have to feel like missing out.
We’ve pulled together a few spots where you can escape the city and see the versatility the UK has to offer -
The Old School House Eilean Shona - West Coast - Scotland
The call of the untamed Highland mountains cape has never felt so strong, venturing away from the North Coast 500 to the west coast. Spend time island hopping from the Firth of Clyde to the Outer Hebrides, skimming past Skye in favour of lesser-visited isles such as Eigg, Lismore and Rona. On the car free island of Eilean Shona you can embrace days of wild swims, hikes and nature watching.
To finish the day in a The Old Schoolhouse, recently converted into a charming gas-lit luxury paradise with double-ended Victorian roll top bath with views on to the sea. situated in its own dramatic bay, over a mile along the North Channel coastal path. A remote, beautiful contrast to the city.
The Old Downton Lodge - Shropshire – England
Often overlooked by travellers for the Brecon Beacons or Stratford-upon-Avon, Shropshire's "blue remembered hills" are prime territory for eeking out social distancing. A pocket of arcadian bliss between the Midlands and Wales, the county is among England's most sparsely populated. Crowned by a castle, Ludlow's historic streets are peppered with buzzy restaurants, while market town Shrewsbury is lined with the country's longest row of uninterrupted independent shops. Elsewhere, hike the Wrekin, paddleboard on the Severn or tour the Wroxeter Roman Vineyard.
Stay at the Old Downton Lodge, Escapist, romantic, and tranquil: this is a place of quiet sophistication, where you can luxuriate in the calm of the Shropshire countryside. The unique collection of renovated barns and stables, medieval, half-timbered and Georgian, presents as a fine dining retreat of ten exclusive, individually-styled room.
The Pig - South Downs – Sussex – England
The Sussexes practically sparkle with staycation-worthy gems. Think sandy shores in West Wittering, almost saccharine Rye and historic-meets-hip Hastings. Take a walk on the wilder side, the rolling South Downs, to admire night time views of the Milky Way and the world's first geocached art trail. A project by England's Creative Coast, its waterfront installations will stretch from the Thames Estuary to East Sussex. Farther west near Arundel, The Pig's seventh hotel is set to open this summer, complete with its own vineyard.
The beautiful, ancient market town of Arundel with its medieval Castle and meandering streets, and a stone's throw away from historic Petworth, the yachting playground of Chichester, with no shortage of independent shops, antique galleries, and delicious watering holes and the vibrant and buzzy scene of Brighton.
In classic Pig style the latest hotel is abundant with rich, cosy and indulgent fabrics, reclaimed textures and wood, roll-top baths, locally-stocked larders and each one totally unique.
Just a short stroll from the main house the bespoke romantic Garden Wagons and Field Wagons have been designed using traditional craft methods but are kitted out with all the mod-cons and tucked away either in the walled garden or in the long grass of the fields, they are secluded, private and completely perfect for an escape for 2.
Ty Forest Farmhouse - Cardigan - Wales
In the 16th century, Cardigan was an important port and herring fishery. But today it's alternative arts, disruptive fashion labels and outdoorsy sleeping options that are breathing life into this sleepy town at the mouth of the River Teifi. By day, immerse yourself in Welsh culture at Cardigan Castle and the National Wool Museum; get back to nature with sea kayaking or bushcraft classes; or pick up the Wales Coast Path for windswept walks and seal sightings.
The ideal spot for gathering of friends and family Ty Fforest farmhouse is a Georgian farmhouse, rebuilt in late 2015. From the outside, this is a farmhouse a child would draw: stout as a cottage loaf with a flour-white face and proud chimneys. Inside, though, it has all the swish of a Scandi ski lodge, with its pine cladding and blankets. A Peter Doig painting hangs in one bedroom; some chairs are made with planks painted by Hirst, Emin and others.
Doughty Presbyterian pews can be arranged into a cinema in the sitting room and the big-hearted kitchen/dining space is set around an inglenook you could herd sheep into. The children's bunk room is long and narrow like a ship's cabin, made for holing up in for 'no adults allowed' gatherings; the four bedrooms feel just as tucked away, each with its own bathroom - the front ones have Miss Marple views of the village church.
Studio 104 creates the finest bespoke uniforms for some of the UK best known staycation spots. Complementing our vast global client portfolio, we are proud to have worked extensively with The Fife Arms and Gleneagles in Scotland in the past, and we are equally thrilled about our forthcoming collaboration with The Macallan Estate. Including the idyllic Newt in Somerset, for a city escape only a short train ride away from London.
Written by Bethan - Product Development Assistant
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