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Top Ten Bolthole Escapes under two hours from London

Here’s one for all you London folk – for those of you who are a slave to your city jobs, but in desperate need of an escape from the Big Smoke every now and again.  Do not fear crossing to the other side of the M25 – there’s a lot of good stuff out there!  So here are our Top 10 Boltholes, all under two hours from London (though don’t blame us if it takes you longer at 5.30pm on a Friday evening….).

1. Waterfront Luxury in Suffolk

Secluded lakeside log cabins with luxury interiors, private hot tubs, wood burning stoves, and your very own dining decks.  An idyllic rural retreat in the very heart of the Suffolk countryside.  From £455 for a short break (3 night weekend / 4 night midweek).

Luxury Suffolk cabins

Luxury Suffolk cabins

To see our other Suffolk properties, click here.

2. Recycled huts in Sussex

Charming, unique and romantic huts on a farm in East Sussex.  Hand built using reclaimed, recycled and locally sources materials, the huts are finished to an exceptionally high standard and come with hot showers and hampers of local produce, should you so choose.  From £79 per hut per night.

Recycled huts in Sussex

Recycled huts in Sussex

To see our other Sussex properties, click here.

3. Windmill B&B in the Cotswolds

This quirky and historic windmill stands on a hill amongst the trees, just above the medieval Cotswold town of Bradford on Avon.  Ornate spiral staircase, gothic windows, and three exquisite rooms (one bed is circular, another is a queen sized water bed).  From £89 per night.

Windmill B&B in the Cotswolds

Windmill B&B in the Cotswolds

To see our other Wiltshire properties, click here.

4. Thatched ‘chocolate box’ cottage in Buckinghamshire

This thatched, stone, grade two listed cottage dates from 1650 and is a truly romantic hideaway for two which simply oozes character.  Inside a vaulted bedroom and open beams; outside a pretty conservation village which has been used many times for filming – the quintessential English village.  From £150 per night / £280 per week.

Chocolate box cottage in Buckinghamshire

Chocolate box cottage in Buckinghamshire

To see our other Buckinghamshire properties, click here.

5. Showman’s Wagon near the sea in Hampshire

This beautiful Showman’s Wagon has been stunningly restored by one of the last trained gypsy wagon painters in the country.  In the grounds of a working pottery just outside Milford on Sea, the wagon has an opulent gypsy chic interior, a sumptous breakfast is provided, and you are walking distance from the beach.  From £80 per night.

Gypsy Wagon in Hampshire

Gypsy Wagon in Hampshire

To see our other Hampshire properties, click here.

6. Interior design meets the environment in Oxfordshire

A chic Cotswold cottage dating back to the 1850′s, in the heart of one of England’s areas of outstanding natural beauty.  Flagstone floors and inglenook fireplace meets luxurious bathrooms and designer kitchen.  From £1350 per week.  Shorter stays also available.

Chic Oxfordshire cottage

Chic Oxfordshire cottage

To see our other Oxfordshire properties, click here.

7. Hidden gem near Shakespeare`s Stratford upon Avon

Luxurious cottage in the heart of a Warwickshire Village.  Stratford just four miles away, and the delights of the Cotswolds on your doorstep.  Charming, stylish and homely – the perfect escape from the urban whirlwind.   From £480 per week.

Luxurious cottage near Stratford

Luxurious cottage near Stratford

To see our other Warwickshire properties, click here.

8. Glamping in rural Wiltshire

Stylish glamping in bell tents in rural Wiltshire, just five miles from the city of Bath.  Comfy, cosy and well equipped, there are hot showers, and even an indoor pool a ten minute walk away at the farm.  A perfect place for relaxation, and escaping the rat race. From £79 per night.

Glamping in rural Wiltshire

Glamping in rural Wiltshire

To see our other Wiltshire properties, click here.

9. Boutique hotel by the sea in Sussex

The perfect romantic refuge!  Eight bedroom boutique hotel in St Leonards on Sea.  Spa style bathrooms and Egyptian cotton bed linen.  A funky restaurant on site and individually designed bedrooms, some with panoramic sea views from floor to ceiling windows.  From £99 per night.

Boutique hotel in Sussex

Boutique hotel in Sussex

To see our other Sussex properties, click here.

10. Medieval Hall House in Suffolk

14th century one bedroom medieval hall house in the pretty riverside village of Nayland.  Flagstone floor, exposed beams, inglenook fireplace and beautiful interior design.  The delights of Suffolk on your doorstep.  Short breaks from £270 / one week from £495.

Medieval house in Suffolk

Medieval house in Suffolk

To see our other Suffolk properties, click here.

 

 

 

One Off Places goes to Riverside Cottage in Hampshire

It’s always lovely when a member of the One Off Places team gets to holiday in a One Off Place. And it’s particularly special when that place not only meets but completely surpasses your expectations.

Riverside Cottage in Hampshire

This is what happened when one of our number took a group of girlfriends to Riverside Cottage in Hampshire for a weekend getaway. I don’t know about you, but when I picture the ‘perfect’ winter weekend in the country, I imagine a characterful thatched cottage, a roaring fire, long walks in mud-spattered wellies, glasses of red wine, lots of laughter round a big table, home cooked food and comfortable beds to sink into. But I also imagine contemporary luxuries. And that, in a nutshell, is what Riverside Cottage provides. Think beamed ceilings, a warming Aga, social conservatory dining and plenty of space for everyone to stretch out in. Somehow this is a place that manages to be cosy, quaint, light and spacious all at the same time!

Charming and characterful interiors

Charming and characterful interiors

And the great beauty of this cottage? That it is just as idyllic in the summertime. The only bad thing thing about our icy weekend was that we couldn’t make the most of the swimming pool, the well-appointed pool house and the extensive garden.

Large grounds

Large grounds

If you’re looking for somewhere to spend a peaceful countryside break with friends and family, somewhere that is an easy drive from London and yet feels rural and remote, then look no further. You won’t regret it!

Riverside

Riverside!

Key Features

  • Sleeps 8 in 4 bedrooms
  • Dining table to seat 10
  • Garden
  • Swimming pool
  • Village pub just a 1 mile walk away

For all our Hampshire properties, click here.

To view the various types of properties we’ve got on offer, from tipis and Treehouses to chalets and chateaux, click here.

To search all our properties, click here.

To view the Riverside Cottage website, click here.

Our Top Six Greek Villas – Super Stylish, to Super Budget

Best for Style

Built and designed in 2005 by a renowned Athenian architect, the Olive House is an absolute gem on the ancient Greek island of Paros. This stunning house is set into a hillside and oozes style, both inside and out.  Sit on the terrace and enjoy the spectacular views across the Aegean sea.

Sleeps up to seven people in three bedrooms.

From £1005 – £2015 per week.

Best for Decadence

Nestled within the olive groves under Mount Pantokrator, with panoramic views of the mountains and sea from the terraces and infinity pool, Villa Petalutha offers peace, seclusion and privacy in a truly memorable setting. Beautifully designed interiors, a pristine swimming pool, and beaches just 6km away.  Welcome to paradise.

Sleeps up to eight people in four bedrooms.

From £1500 – £3600 per week.

Best for Rural Idyll

This is the rural idyll: a villa in Kephalonia surrounded by olive groves and orchards, set in a horseshoe of green hills with a view of the Bay of Sami and the island of Ithaca beyond.  Private pool in an acre of landscaped grounds.  5km from the beach.

Sleeps up to 12 people in five bedrooms.

From £1900 – £3250 per week.

Best for Eco Credentials

A seven acre eco-chic farm on the shores of the Ionian island of Ithaca. Perched on a hillside and with spectacular sea views, this organic olive oil producing estate includes four houses, each set into its own fragrant gardened terraces, a swimming pool and outdoor facilities. Massage treatments, yoga sessions, coffee shop and bike hire all on site.

Each house sleeps up to four people in two bedrooms.

£2050 – £3245 per week.

Best for Glamour

A luxurious house on a private estate, an infinity pool with breathtaking panoramic views over a sparkling blue bay, a tranquil village setting. Accommodation for 14 and luxurious interiors. Welcome to your own little piece of paradise.

Sleeps up to 14 in seven bedrooms.

From £3500 – £5900 per week.

Best for Budget

This simply furnished and characterful Venetian house is set at the back of Hydra town just a few minutes’ walk from the beautiful coastline of Hydra. Hydra is one of the most unspoilt and interesting of the Greek islands and is a vehicle-free zone; step back in time and enjoy the slow pace of life.

Sleeps up to six people in two bedrooms.

From £250 – £400 per week.

Six Stylish Places to Stay in Brittany

Here at One Off Places we’re feeling that Brittany is being a bit underrated, so today’s blog is going to showcase our top six places to stay in Brittany, and remind you why it’s a fabulous destination choice.

If you’re coming from the UK, it’s just a hop across the channel.  It means you can take your own car (or rely on one of the many budget airlines for a good value flight) and you won’t end up spending most of your holiday travelling to and from your villa / holiday house.

Brittany is one of France’s most rugged regions and is a fascinating mixture of amazing coastline, charming towns, ancient woodland and magical islands.  What is more, it can provide you with a wide array of holiday rental opportunities, from cottages to castles and all points in between.

Here are our faves:

Lostmarc`h, near Morgat

This pretty stone cottage in a protected area of outstanding natural beauty is just minutes walk from one of the best beaches in Brittany. Lostmarc’h is a tiny hamlet of original stone cottages. Utterly unspoilt, (the whole village is listed) this area takes in all the wild beauty of the Atlantic and the Crozon peninsula.

3 beds / sleeps 6.  From €1100 – €1950 per week.  .

Ty Anna, near Le Faou

A super stylish hideaway. This recycled wooden chalet is exceptionally situated in one of the most scenic spots in Finistere. Nestled in idyllic natural surroundings with wide open river views, high quality furnishings mix with simple luxuries to provide the ultimate cosy escape. A small aluminium fishing boat is also available by separate agreement for those who want to fish, or explore the river.

3 beds /sleeps 5.  From €1200- €2000 per week.

Maison de Beauport, near Paimpol

Maison de Beauport is a magical house perched on the edge of a freshwater lake, just a minute’s walk from the sea and the 13th century Abbaye de Beauport. Inside is an eclectic mix of antiques, contemporary furniture and unusual features, whilst outside offers natural beauty and wildlife literally on the doorstep.

5 beds / sleeps 12.  From £950 – £1750 per week.  

Bot Conan Lodge, near Quimper

Set in the ‘Baie de la Foret’ which fuses deep unspoiled countryside with a crystal clear water secluded beach just metres away, Bot Conan Lodge offers glamping at its very best. These amazing safari tents offer an idyllic setting in which to relax and enjoy life.

Each tent sleeps up to five people in two bedrooms.  From €73 – €132 per night.  .

Ty Traez, Cap Sizun

Located just 300m from the sea in an area of outstanding coastal scenery, this large ‘maison de maitre’ is full of charm and character. Homely, stylish and just a short stroll from stunning cliff paths and deserted beaches, Ty Traez is the ultimate base for an authentic Breton holiday.  There is a smaller three bedroom version next door, also available to let via One Off Places.

5 beds / sleeps 8.  From €1350 – €2500 per week.  (smaller one costs from €1200 – €2000 per week). Cap Sizun.

Kistinic Gatehouse, near Quimper

Situated just inside the entrance on the grounds of a French chateau, the gatehouse is a charming stone cottage which has been renovated to the highest of standards. And with stylish furnishings, a large private garden and access to both a swimming pool and a beautiful 15 hectare park, you couldn’t want for more.

3 beds / sleeps 6.  From £1200 – £2000 per week. 

To view all our Brittany properties, click here.

To expand your search to include the whole of France, click here.

To see all our properties, click here.

If you’re after a particular type of property, perhaps a yurt, chateau or cabin, click here.

Unusual Holiday Houses in the UK

If you want a holiday to remember you don’t have to go as far as you would think – in fact there are some incredibly unusual holiday houses in the UK. So much so that it’s nigh on impossible to narrow it down! Will you choose England, Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland? Will you head for the coast, the mountains or the countryside? Are you planning a group getaway with friends and family or a romantic retreat? Whatever you’re looking for and whenever you want to go, there’s definitely somewhere to fit the bill, it’s just a question of decision-making!

Unusual holiday houses in the UK come in all shapes and sizes, but here are a few of our favourites to tickle your fancy…

The treehouse hideaway

This house is actually called The Treehouse Hideaway, and it does exactly what it says on the tin! Who didn’t daydream about living in a treehouse when they were a child? But this is not exactly a draughty, uncomfortable hut. This place, 6 metres off the ground in the Kentish countryside, comes complete with under floor heating, Sky TV, luxurious furnishings, a log burner and even a private hot tub. Both inside and out, this is about an unusual as it gets, and it’s made just for two.

The treehouse hideaway with private hot tub

The treehouse hideaway with private hot tub

The Cotswolds work of art

Contemporary, chic and eco-friendly to boot, this stunningly designed property with its flagstone floors and inglenook fireplace is magnificent and unique in equal measure. The Chestnuts leaves nothing to be desired in terms of cutting edge interiors, but it also satisfies on every other level, from the luxury bathrooms and culinary delights, to the secluded garden and beautiful views.

The Chestnuts interior

The Chestnuts interior

The historic tower house

Just 2 miles from the centre of Edinburgh, with spectacular views of the city, is Liberton Tower, a 15th century tower house with enormous atmosphere and character. Old features like slit windows, vaulted ceilings, stone staircases and tapestries are still very much in evidence, and modern comforts like under floor heating and up-to-date technology have been added. If you want to experience a little piece of authentic history, this is the place.

15th century Scottish tower house

15th century Scottish tower house

The luxury windmill

This converted mill on the Isle of Anglesey dates back to 1741 but has been thoroughly modernised to create a truly fabulous and luxurious space. The immaculate furnishings and private spa hot tub are tempting enough, but the selling point here is really the top floor, from where there are breathtaking views out over the sea towards Puffin Island. A holiday here is unforgettable.

The beach house

Sometimes only the coast will do, and if you’re a seaside lover then you’d be hard pressed to find anywhere as remarkable as The Beach House in Cornwall. The hot tub on the terrace, which looks directly out over the water, is an undoubtedly tempting feature, but you will also be reeled in by the suspended wood burner, oak tree dining table, hydrotherapy bath, eccentric games room and sumptuous bedrooms and bathrooms.

Cornish beach house with private hot tub

Cornish beach house with private hot tub