Relax in the knowledge that you are in the driving seat of reaching your chosen destination on time by holidaying closer to home this summer. From coastal to rural locations, beachcombing to countryside walks, forego far-flung destinations and kick-back in summer style at our luxury homestays. Whether you've only a few days to escape, or have a couple of weeks at your disposal and are looking for last-minute inspiration, we've luxurious B&B's as well as great self-catering pads to tempt.
Laurel Manor, Piddletrenthide, Dorset
Stay: If it's privacy you crave then this stunning manor house is the perfect country retreat. Spacious rooms chock-full of interesting interiors accessorised with fantastic artwork make this a truly unique homestay. From congregating as a family to enjoying peace, quiet and ‘me time’, this is a flexible property that offers a real flavour of the owners.
Play: From the indoor pool to spacious grounds and tennis court, this is the perfect summer garden party property whatever the weather.
Pay: June/September 3-nt stays at £3150, week-stays at £4500. August/September 3-nt stays at £3750, week-stays at £6400.
On your way: www.laurelmanor.uniquehomestays.com
Chydane, Helston, Cornwall
Stay: Luxury cliff-top accommodation boasting some of the finest views in Cornwall. Chydane’s decor reflects the cool blue hues of the sea, enjoy a good night’s sleep on the comfortable beds soothed by the sounds of the sea – Chydane is a real haven of peace and tranquillity.
Play: With views overlooking the Lizard Peninsula, this beautiful cottage offers a fantastic location for those who love the sea – enjoy long walks across the coastal paths and return home for drinks on the terrace.
Pay: Minimum of two night stay, from £55 per person per night
On your way: www.chydane.uniquehomestays.com
Stone Farmhouse, Modbury, Devon
Stay: A contemporary light-filled farmhouse restoration where open spaces and contemporary decor combine in this family-friendly abode.
Play: Just 15 minutes from the coast yet you’re ensconsed in your own rural wildnerness at the house. There’s no excuse not to be outdoors when there’s everything from sailing to surfing, golfing to fishing within a short distance of the house.
Pay: June/September: Sleeping 12, 3-nt stay at £1395, week-stay at £2050. Sleeping 4 option from £995 for a 3-nt stay and £1395 for a week. July/August week-stays only for 12 guests at £2950.
On your way: www.stonefarmhouse.uniquehomestays.com
Gilly Cottage, nr St Cleer, Cornwall
Stay: Rural charm and cosy comfort combine in this country pad which is the perfect bolthole for couples. Relax and recline in the garden as you take in the countryside views surrounded by fragrant blooms and birdsong; tranquillity reigns at this rural retreat.
Play: Head to the high cliffs of North Cornwall or the mythical landscape of Bodmin Moor where the famous Cheesewring and the Hurlers await.
Pay: June/September dates at £335 for a 3-nt stay and £480 weekly. July/August dates at £650 weekly.
On your way: www.gillycottage.uniquehomestays.com
Scudamore Court, Wiltshire
Stay: Traditional grandeur with a contemporary twist, this spacious manor house is the perfect base for a summer garden party with friends.
Play: Head to Bath for a day out, where you can soak your troubles away at Bath Spa before enjoying a spot of al fresco dining in the city. For action-seekers, there's sailing, shooting and golf a short distance from the house.
Pay: June/September 4-nt Monday to Friday stays at £2595.
On your way: www.scudamorecourt.uniquehomestays.com
The Sky Ranch, nr Llanidloes, Wales
Stay: Contemporary comfort. Floor to ceiling glass, chunky exposed lintels and gorgeous Welsh stone combine with colourful artwork.
Play: From the more leisurely fishing, horse riding and rowing to the adrenalin-fuelled downhill mountain biking, enduro, rally racing and motorbiking, there’s no excuse not to be mud-covered from the moment you arrive if you’re looking for an activity break! Alternatively, just sit back and enjoy the peace and quiet.
Pay: June/September sleeping 4: 3-nt stays at £640, week-stays at £840; sleeping 8: 3-nt stays at £840, week-stays at £1200. July/August week-stays only at £1900.
On your way: www.theskyranch.uniquehomestays.com
Oberon House, nr Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire
Stay: This Grade II listed coach house B&B combines period features with contemporary living. Beautifully decorated, with luxurious linens and bespoke furniture, it has all the comforts of a well-loved home.
Play: Rumour has it that William Shakespeare frequented Oberon House where the surrounding gardens and forests acted as a muse for Midsummer Night’s Dream. Under the willow trees by the pond you can relax and enjoy reading his plays, or may even feel a little inclined to write something of your own.
Pay: From £99.50 inc VAT double o/c
On your way: www.oberonhouse.uniquehomestays.com
Rosewastis Manor, nr Watergate Bay, Cornwall
Stay: Manor house with a modern flavour. Think green views, flagstone floors, spacious rooms, stacks of character and bags of charm.
Play: You’re just a stone’s throw from the playground of Watergate Bay, whether trying kite surfing, coasteering or powerboating. Then head, sand-in-hair a few steps away to Jamie Oliver's Fifteen, where you can watch the sun set as you tuck into delicious Cornish fodder.
Pay: June/September (from 10th) sleeping 8: 3-nt stays at £1200, week-stays at £1750; sleeping 17 3-nt stays at £1855, week-stays at £2650. July/August week-stays only at £3700.
On your way: www.rosewastismanor.uniquehomestays.com
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