If the thought of an ever-growing wedding list of relatives you haven’t seen in years is more than you can manage, opt for a more intimate wedding bash at one of Unique Home Stays luxury properties, inviting your nearest and dearest to celebrate your big day in style. Take exclusive hire of one of our stunning properties in breathtaking locations, whether your dream wedding is a laid-back beach gathering, complete with BBQ, or you’re looking for a more formal affair, where champagne and canapés precede fireworks and flame throwers. We’ve got a selection of coastal, quirky and charming properties to which you’ll be saying ‘I do’ as soon as you’ve visited.
Du Maurier Riverside Hideaway, Cornwall
The epitome of luxury, if you’re looking for a stunning property in a breathtaking location, then send out the invites to your very own riverside hideaway.
In the lead up: You can truly put your feet up and relax at this property, which comes complete with staff and in-house chef. Immersed in the literary landscape of Daphne du Maurier and Kenneth Grahame (Wind in the Willows) think long riverside walks and reclining on your skippered cruiser to ready yourself for your big day.
On the day: Say your vows barefoot if you choose on the grass roof of this stylish hideaway. Ensconced in nature, this luxury riverside retreat is a unique and spectacular location to hold a civil ceremony for up to 50 guests.
Tuck into: From smoked Cornish feta to griddled mackerel and freshly caught lobster, with a wealth of local produce from which to choose, your wedding day feast can be as elaborate or simple as you choose. You and your guests can choose to enjoy your bespoke menu in the waterside lounge, or if the sylvan setting inspires an al fresco picnic, then head outdoors to make the most of the stunning location.
And so to bed: If you’re lucky enough to be one of the main wedding party, then you won’t have to travel far. The property sleeps 14 guests (ideally 8 adults and 6 children) Those guests staying over the water in Fowey have a moonlight sail to get them back to their beds to look forward to.
Wedding Planner: There is a minimum of a 3-nt stay for wedding parties at £2500 per night (2008) and £3000 per night (2009) This price is fully inclusive of catering for resident guests; with wedding guests food and wine at an additional cost.
Find out more: www.dumaurierhideaway.uniquehomestays.com
Artists Beach House, Whitstable
Think quirky and eclectic beachside pad, where guests can wander barefoot down the beach as the sun sets over the water.
In the lead up: Not just for the bohemian bride who wants to chill out on the veranda pre-wedding, there’s lots to amuse pre- and post- wedding in Whitstable. For foodies, there are eateries galore, and Ealham Valley vineyards is just a short distance from the property. If you want to top up your tan to ensure you’re glowing on your big day, then you can head to the beaches of Broadstairs, Joss and Viking Bay for a change of scene.
On the day: Up to 40 guests can join you as you tie the knot in style in this cool New England-style seaside home. If you’re simply looking for a stunning location for your ceremony, then civil partnerships, marriages, vow renewals, commemorations and blessings can be booked as stand alone events (outside of holiday periods).
Tuck into: As perfect a location for a BBQ on the deck, blankets on the beach and dancing on the sand as a picnic-style buffet with cucumber sandwiches and Pimms. Up to 25 guests can be catered for in-house for a sit down meal, 40 for a buffet.
And so to bed: Bedecked in coastal hues, the house sleeps up to 10 guests
Wedding Planner: Self-catered stays based on 10 guests for a week-stay during peak season from £2,750. Outside of these times, three-night stays are available from £1,500. In addition to the accommodation cost, a venue hire fee is applicable; this varies depending on numbers and requirements. The property is also available for mid-week ceremony-only gatherings for up to 40 guests; from £300 to £600.
Find out more: www.artistsbeachhouse.uniquehomestays.com
The Ranch, Norfolk
A kitsch party pad perfect for an alternative, fun and inspiring wedding.
In the lead up: For adrenalin-junkies, there’s riding, go karting, shooting, golf and jet-skiing on tap nearby. Evening entertainment that can be arranged includes Scaletrix, casinos and laser shooting, or just head to the hot tub or indulge in in-house beauty treatments. For a romantic pre-wedding adventure, take to the skies in a hot air balloon.
On the day: For something a little different, book your very own Wild West-themed ceremony. The property has a civil ceremony licence in place.
Tuck into: Whether you’re looking for the ultimate in banquet or buffet style dining; from romantic wedding breakfasts to elaborate champagne and canapé receptions, fish and chip suppers to hog roasts – the choice is yours!
And so to bed: The property can sleep 18 guests; an additional tepee is available for the wedding couple at an additional cost (also weather dependant)
Wedding Planner: Buck the weekend wedding trend and go for a mid-weeker at this property if you’re looking to secure a last minute wedding date for 2008. For up to 50 guests for the wedding day this year, as well as accommodation for 18, a 2-nt stay from Tues to Thurs goes from £4,040, while a 5-nt stay goes from £4,295.
Find out more: www.theranch.uniquehomestays.com
The Beach Hut, Cornwall
Don’t save this romantic retreat for your honeymoon; instead break with tradition and elope with your other half to this coastal hideaway for your own private declaration of love. Who needs guests when you’ve got each other and a stunning coastal vista?
In the lead up: Bracing sea air and leg stretching walks make this as perfect a base for an outdoor-pursuits loving couple, as a twosome who want nothing more than to sit back and watch the world go by. Escape the modern day trappings of the traditional wedding and simply be together.
On the day: This property does not have a civil licence, but the stunning backdrop is perfect for a blessing, with the accompaniment of the roaring waves to add atmosphere.
Tuck into: This is dinner a deux, so simply cater for your own tastes here. Think a gourmet seafood picnic, chilled bottle of bubbly and decadent chocolate cake; far too good to share!
And so to bed: But not before setting off your very own celebratory fireworks of course.
Wedding Planner: During July and August there is a minimum of a week-stay at this property at £1,700 on a self-catered basis. Outside of these times, 3-nt stays are available from £850.
Find out more: www.thebeachhut.uniquehomestays.com
Scottish Hideaway, Argyll, Scotland
Truly get away from it all with a hilltop wedding in the most breathtaking of settings.
In the lead up: Rejuvenate yourself before the wedding day by donning your walking boots and taking to the hills; alternatively just sit back and take in the views in front of a roaring log fire. If you really want to arrive in style, leave the car behind - the aerial views if you arrive by helicopter are breathtaking.
On the day: The property is fully licenced for weddings and civil partnerships; you can choose to exchange vows in the house, or instead make the most of the stunning scenery and head outside; the undulating grounds that lead down to a sandy beach are truly idyllic.
Tuck into: Hire one of the greatest fiddlers in Scotland to set the scene for dining. Choose from mouth-watering canapés, and the best of local ingredients – think fillet of Angus beef or wilde thyme smoked ballotine of salmon. To accompany, you’ll be spoilt for choice with over 260 wines and 30 champagnes from which to choose! For a summer wedding, deckchairs and rugs provide the perfect al fresco picnic area; while during the winter a cosy scene can be created in the studio, where picture windows maximise the stunning views.
And so to bed: The property sleeps 11 guests in understated luxury.
Wedding Planner: Exclusive use for a minimum stay of three days and two nights is £1,550 per day. This includes accommodation for up to 11 guests in six en-suite bedrooms with continental breakfast; up to 60 additional guests attending a day or evening party; tables and chairs for a sit-down meal.
Find out more: www.scottishhideaway.uniquehomestays.com
Wincanton Farmhouse, Somerset
A farmhouse wedding with a difference, this is one for the eco bride; the local church is just a stone’s throw from the property.
In the lead up: Head for a day at the races for a fun precursor to the wedding day – Wincanton racecourse is a short distance from the property.
On the day: There’s no need for worrying about whether you’ll get to the church on time, as the beautiful local church is just a short walk from the stunning 17th century cottage where up to 40 guests can be catered for in a marquee wedding.
Tuck into: Think local when it comes to fodder for your big day. There’s a plethora of delicious produce on the doorstep, whether you prefer a hog roast or a three-course feast featuring the best of seasonal produce. The pretty manicured gardens and surrounding orchards provide the perfect backdrop for photographs and a leg stretch before tucking into the wedding cake!
And so to bed: The farmhouse sleeps 10 in plush country cottage bedrooms overlooking the lush Somerset valley.
Wedding Planner: 3-nt self-catered weekends from £2,200; an additional venue hire fee of £500 is applicable, with marquee hire approximately £1,000.
Find out more: www.wincantonfarmhouse.uniquehomestays.com
Slane Manor Estate, County Meath, Southern Ireland
Just 30-minutes from Dublin airport, it’s with ease that you can get your friends and family to this exclusive country estate for an unforgettable wedding day.
In the lead up: Ireland’s heritage capital, you’ll discover a fusion of breathtaking scenery and forest walks to enjoy as you look forward to your big day. From pedicures to full body massages, calm any last minute nerves with in-house beauty treatments guaranteed to sooth and relax you.
On the day: Choose from an intimate civil ceremony at the property or a church wedding in the village. Inside, antique furniture, open fires and luxurious furnishings make for a truly decadent backdrop, while outside there is over 70 acres of parkland to explore.
Tuck into: Sumptuous Irish and international cuisine, perfectly befitting the grand Georgian elegance of this manor house property. Up to 60 guests can dine on a banquet to die for in the drawing room.
And so to bed: The manor house sleeps 14 – additional accommodation is available for up to 36 guests in luxury estate cottages
Wedding Planner: A one-night stay in the manor inclusive of venue hire is 6,000 euros for a B&B stay based on 14 guests. The cottages cost from 100 euros per person per night on a B&B basis
Find out more: www.slaneestate.uniquehomestays.com
Panorama, Ilfracombe, Devon
In the lead up: From sunbathing beachside to visiting Damian Hurst’s restaurant, walking the coast path or just enjoying a round of golf; there’s plenty to enjoy without having to travel far.
On the day: The property doesn’t have a civil ceremony licence, but the vine room – a large Victorian conservatory with grape vines and a nectarine tree – is the perfect setting for a blessing during the summer months. Ilfracombe Parish church is just a short walk from the house.
Tuck into: From local lobster to homemade beef Wellington, delicious cakes and roulades, whether you’re looking for a sit-down formal dining experience or cream teas on the terrace, the choice is yours. The Vine Room can comfortably seat 20 guests with the sun streaming through the windows.
And so to bed: Sleeping 12 on a self-catered basis, the house is bright, stylish and comfortable - the perfect contemporary coastal pad. The additional eight wedding guests don’t have far to travel to get to their beds either – there’s a four-bed B&B next door to Panorama.
Wedding Planner: Summer weddings from May to September; week-stays from £2,500 to £3,300. Up to a maximum of 20 guests for the wedding day inclusive of resident guests.
Find out more: www.panorama.uniquehomestays.com
For more information contact Sarah Stanley or Jen Morgan
Tel: +44(0)1637 881183