As the autumnal darkness gently creeps in and the air turns cooler, there’s only one comfort that keeps me from booking a six month plane journey to finer climates and that’s my tradition of creating a warm cosy nest - safely burrowed indoors. Every year I lovingly layer my coastal home with woollen blankets, textured pillows and furry throws, all set around the glowing wood burning stove which becomes the central gathering spot for the season ahead. This I team with fluffy socks pulled high, steaming bowls of comfort fodder, hands cupping a frothy mug of indulgent cocoa or a sneaky mulled wine – safe in the knowledge that it’s the season for luxurious rich foods and beach bikini days are over for another year!


For me, the trick to falling into a Keatsian love affair with the “season of mists and mellow fruitfulness” is to take a deep breath and make time to revel in the inevitable. Let the sunset’s glow - blooming with pinks, reds and oranges - sink into your soul, crunch through the fallen leaves with a skip in your step and fill your lungs with the crisp, fresh air of an October morning.

To mark the fall of Autumn, I have complied a list of luxury homestays that provide the perfect setting for a seasonal staycation.

Bartholomew, Tresham, Gloucestershire


Treasure long weekends and celebratory gatherings spent at Bartholomew, flaunting four-poster beds, slipper baths and beautifully restored original features beneath its honey-hued farmhouse façade. Nearby, blissfully set deep within the southern Cotswolds hills and home to 15,000 trees, you’ll find the arboretum near Tetbury is overflowing with profound copper hues associated with this remarkable season. A great location for autumn breaks, no stretch of England is more romanticized than the Cotswolds, especially this time of year.

Little Otterling, Gunnislake, Devon

For those willing to fly the nest and brave the brisk outdoors, why not embark on a couples orienteering retreat around Devon’s Tamar Valley trails before hunkering down on the banks of the River Tamar in your own countryside cottage retreat? Little Otterling fuses stylish interiors with an urban chicness, all surrounded by a seasonal spectacle of nature at its finest. Wrap up and recline in the sun loungers as you take front row seats to watch the landscape turning crimson, gold and bronze.

Caspian Ranch, Nr Dulverton, Somerset

Pack your wax jacket and wellingtons and head to Caspian Ranch, an ultra-luxe converted barn burrowed on the southern edge of Exmoor National Park. Set within acres of Somerset’s most spectacular scenery, Caspian Ranch retreat is as country chic as they come; featuring inspired rustic interiors, a huge centrepiece fireplace (perfect for creating your cosy nest!) and neigh(!)bouring stables for your own horses should you wish to cart them along too. What better way to embrace Autumn’s dramatic decent than with your noble stead?!


Aquila, Bampton, Cumbria


You’ll have the luxury of a wildlife haven right on your doorstep at Aquila. Set right on Haweswater's sparkling shoreline, this lodge’s breath-taking location on the eastern edge of the Lake District was also home to England’s onlygolden eagle. Keep your eyes peeled for other rare sightings; a seasonal highlight is the large flock of migrating birds travelling at dusk to form large roosts returning to their own cosy nooks! Following a climb to the summit of Kidsty Pike, there’ll be nothing more rewarding than a night at this modernist gem with it’s seductively clandestine appeal.


Florin, Llanarth, Wales

Set in five acres of magical gardens and within close proximity to the Heritage coast of West Wales, Florin has plenty of space for several generations to amble among the fallen leaves and become enchanted once again with the splendours of Autumn.


The tree-lined driveway on approach gives a suggestion of the grandeur to come. Further exploration into the secluded romantic gardens featuring ornate fountains, secret pathways and a hidden treehouse will delight children and instil fond memories of October adventures.


The jewel in the crown of the grounds is the stunning glass-fronted garden house, complete with woodburner, television, pizza oven, stone barbecue, fridge, wine cooler, hanging chair and rustic benches - providing a stylish space for entertainment under the shooting stars.

I hope these cosy homestays have left you ready to embrace an autumnal break. Swaddle in wool, recline in your nest to the snap, crackle and pop of the fire and watch the annual cascade of leaves ebb and flow in the whirling wind as you carefully pick your seasonal escape.