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The Maker´s House | Luxury Self-Catering Home | Saffron Waldon, Essex

The Maker´s House

High Wood, Saffron Walden, Essex, UK

Mediterranean vibes and an unabashed celebration of life’s greatest pleasures meet at The Maker's House in the Saffron Walden countryside. Inside, a tactile journey of patinas satiates the senses, while the garden’s soaring flowers, turquoise pool and easy outdoor living are reminiscent of hedonistic mornings-come-nights on Tuscan hills. A luxury self-catering homestay in Essex that will transport groups far from the rhythms of everyday life.

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This luxury holiday destination replaces the do-it-yourself homestead that once stood in its place, and this patch of land surrounded by arable fields has seen its fair share of inhabitants over the years. Now, with no record of its ramshackle past, every material, planted tree or coloured wall has been selected with precision; the owners applying sage wisdom gained over a lifetime spent working in design. Whether the depths of winter or height of summer, relish in an escape from the city far from ordinary, where comfort and enjoyment reign, and mood lighting brings a soft atmosphere all around.


A house of two sides; on one, a straw bale cottage with rustic lime walls and slate tile roof, the other an eco-friendly abode constructed to the highest standard; pleasing on the eye, to the touch and for the planet. Exposed red brick, soft leather sofas, oiled copper and swaying greenery combine to give this rural home an intimate clubhouse feel, while intricate and unique design abound around every corner (the spiral staircase is a particular marvel!). For family nights spent inside, gather in the glass dining room for a soothing supper while the weather rushes overhead.


Marked as one of the highest points in England by a Triangulation Pillar, the gardens at The Maker's House are a destination in their own right. The creation of a landscape gardener, feed the swans in the lake, skip through the maze or quietly lap the swimming pool before breakfast. Made with entertaining in mind, an outdoor kitchen (complete with traditional charcoal barbecue) and an al fresco dining area that could've been lifted from the Mediterranean will coax all to watch the night come in while devouring a homecooked feast together, before sinking into the hot tub under an ethereal moon.

The Facts

  • SleepsUp to 14 guests
    From £5,995 per week, £4,550 per short break
  • Alternative group optionUp to 10 guests
  • Bedrooms and bathroomsSeven bedrooms span the ground and first floor. The ground floor consists of one bedroom with king-size bed with en suite bath and shower room, one with zip-and-link bed, one with double bed and one family wet room. On the first floor there are two bedrooms with zip-and-link beds (one with in-room circular bath and the other with en suite wet room), one bedroom with double bed and en suite wet room and the last with king-size bed and en suite wet room. There are two separate WCs; one on the ground floor and another next to the outdoor kitchen.
    View bedrooms
  • FeaturesHeated outdoor pool (available from late May to early September), hot tub, outdoor kitchen, cinema, football table, dart board
  • PetsSorry, no pets
  • Arrivals and departuresArrival Day: Friday or MondayArrival Time: 5pmDeparture Time: 10am
  • FamilyYes, children are very welcome. One cot, one highchair and two child gates are available.
  • PracticalitiesThere is parking for up to 12 cars next to the house. The kitchen includes three Gaggenau ovens, four ring induction hob, an American-style fridge-freezer with ice machine and a dishwasher. The outdoor kitchen includes a fridge freezer and traditional charcoal barbecue. The drive is shared with the owners who live in a separate house on the estate, but will at all times respect guest privacy. Maintenance of the pool, hot tub and garden will be required however this will be done discreetly to cause minimal disruption. Due to the moat, lake, swimming pool and ha-ha, parents are asked to supervise children at all times. The substantial insulation of the house affects normal phone signal, so WiFi calling is recommended.
  • Homestay includesWelcome hamper of local goodies, Gaggenau espresso coffee machine, superfast WiFi, two televisions with surround sound, SkyQ with cinema package, Netflix, Amazon TV, Apple TV, grand piano, fresh seasonal fruit from the garden, board games...House book - your property and destination guideDiscover more little luxuries
  • Private cateringSeeking a celebratory dinner or fully catered escape? Our recommended caterers will work with you to create personalised menus for your stay. Details are shared through our house book on confirming your booking.
  • RetreatsFrom foraging weekenders to crash courses in cold-water therapy, our bespoke retreats bridge the gap between luxury and back-to-nature philosophies. Create a hand-crafted stay that puts connectivity at the fore.
  • Eco-friendlyGround source heat pumps and straw bale construction
  • RestrictionsParties considered on prior permission from the owner
  • Other informationProperty terms and conditionsFrequently asked questionsEV charger locationsCheck mobile signalRecommend to a friend

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Cook up a storm in the outdoor kitchen, come rain or shine
The spiral staircase, designed by the owner

Prices & Availability

Please note, availability for this property is to be confirmed by Unique Homestays on receipt of your enquiry

Saffron Walden

Crooked and cobbled, this 12th century market town is awash with charm, history and many a half-timbered inn. Two weekly markets sing with delightful goodies of the homegrown and home-baked variety, while gardens and galleries will fill your boots to burst with culture.

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Saffron Walden
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Getting there

  • On the Map The Maker's House sits just under eight miles from the market town of Saffron Walden, 12 miles north of Bishop's Stortford.
  • By Car Just under 50 miles north of central London, follow the M11 towards Stansted Airport before coming off the motorway at Bishop's Stortford, following the directions provided to the house.
  • By Train The nearest train station is Bishop's Stortford, 12 miles from the property.
  • By Air Stansted Airport is around 15 miles away; London Heathrow is 64 miles away.

From the owner

“The big skies, setting sun, soaring red kites, rutting deer and boxing hares all come together at The Maker´s House to create such a special place.”

From the owner

We acquired the house in the mid-2000s, and at the time it was a derelict building with no planning consents in place. While we waited for planning permission to create The Maker's House, we landscaped the gardens, installed ground source heat pumps and created the straw bale part of the house (the side with all those lovely wonky walls and cottage feel!) 

Seven years later, we were permitted to build our retirement project, a place where the glamour of age and sprightliness of youth come together into a home which blends the inside and out. 

The house was designed to entertain our family and friends and we have had many memorable parties with musician friends on the piano and catering from the outside kitchen.

The riot of colour and perfumes of the early summer borders bursting in the warm sunshine are simply a joy to behold. We love to pick a spot on one of the many of the terraces to enjoy a quiet glass of something cool and sweet, taking in every buzzing bee that floats by.

Elaine & Robert

Owner recommendations

Live like a local, discovering the best hidden gem restaurants, walks and attractions during your holiday in Saffron Walden with an insider’s perspective.


To Do


A city brimming with culture, learning and discovery, Cambridge makes for a great day out for all ages and interests. Punting on the River Cam, museums, galleries, restaurants, gardens... the list goes on and on.

The Cricketers, Clavering

To Eat

The Cricketers, Clavering

The social hub of Clavering village priding itself on exceptional hospitality and fare to match, this 16th century country inn with Michelin Plate offers a seasonal menu across all of the day´s meals (the Lowestoft smoked kipper is worth getting out of bed for!).

Audley End House and Gardens

To See

Audley End House and Gardens

A Jacobean mansion housing a collection of paintings, sculptures and ceramics. The extensive grounds, designed by Capability Brown, include a walled kitchen garden, woodlands and an adventure playground for children.

Saffron Grange Vineyard, Little Walden

To Do

Saffron Grange Vineyard, Little Walden

Gentle south-facing slopes provide the perfect location for some of England´s finest sparkling wine to be created. Take a tour of the vines, sample its fruits (with cream teas on Friday afternoons) and take a few bottles back to your self-catering home for the evening´s celebrations.

Guest Testimonials

We had a great time and were well supported by the owners. We can´t fault the property or the experience! We are looking forward to booking through Unique Homestays again.

Unique extras

From private chefs to luxury at-home spa therapists and adrenalin-fuelled retreats, once you’ve booked your stay we’ll introduce you to our owner-recommended suppliers to create a truly bespoke, memorable escape.


Below are a selection of features in which Unique Homestays has appeared. If you would like to feature the property in an editorial capacity, please contact the marketing team on +44 (0)1637 882014.

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Disclaimer: These particulars, whilst believed to be accurate, are set as a guideline so should not be relied upon as a statement of fact. The photographs show aspects of the property at the time they were taken and it should not be assumed that the property remains precisely as displayed. If there are points of particular importance that need clarifying before you book, please contact us.

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