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Dragonwood Boat House | Luxury Self-Catering | Oakham, Rutland

Dragonwood Boat House

Oakham, Rutland, UK

A traditional Victorian bolthole with contemporary flair, Dragonwood Boat House is the lovechild of talented local craftsmen and Harlequin interior designers, who gave a traditionally-fashioned boat house in Oakham a colourful Italian twist. A luxury self-catering retreat for solo explorers and couples, the lakeside position and country estate setting ensure every whim is catered for. Rutland is England's smallest county and, like this boathouse, certainly lives up to its motto, Multum in Parvo or 'much in little'.



Dragonwood Boat House is a hidden gem cosseted in the arms of a 60-acre private country estate in Rutland (often called the prettiest county in Britain). Wander through the extensive gardens and woodland pathways to find a radiant blanket of over 10,000 tulips and daffodils in springtime. On clement days, lay out a champagne picnic by the lake and enjoy a lazy lunch. Sufficiently fuelled, take advantage of the kayaks and while the day away on the water under the late afternoon's sun. The underfloor heating and giant log fire will ensure warmth on winter’s evenings, where you can bask in the lavish interiors while the outside world fades into insignificance.


With a rich Italian flavour, this luxury self-catering boathouse in Rutland flaunts interiors typical of Harlequin design, combining an eclectic fusion of classic and contemporary style to give a flamboyant finish. A vibrant triad of violet, orange and green jewel-like hues form an adventurous colour palette which oozes opulence. The master suite features a hand-crafted Italian suede super king-size bed adorned with fine French linens for ultimate nighttime luxury. The en suite wet room has a large rain shower and second WC. A romantic wake-up is guaranteed with floor-to-ceiling views over the sparkling lake out to the rolling pastures beyond.


Live and breathe the country dream and choose from many of the pursuits on offer at this country estate; if you want to ditch the car for a day or two, Dragonwood Boat House offers the perfect opportunity to embrace your own private world for a while. The lakeside jetty will appeal to keen fishermen as well as those who wish to simply recline and relax by the water. Further afield, the stylish county town of Oakham lies to the west of Rutland Water, one of the largest man-made lakes in Europe and a birdwatcher’s paradise. From wildlife tours to romantic cycle rides around the 25-mile-long track, nature lovers will be in their element at this Site of Special Scientific Interest.

The Facts

  • SleepsUp to 2 guests
    From £1,395 per week, £1,095 per short break
  • Bedrooms and bathroomsOne double bedroom with king-size bed, one separate WC and one en suite wet room with rain shower and WC.
  • FeaturesKayaks, well-stocked fishing lakes
  • PetsSorry, no pets
  • Arrivals and departuresArrival Time: 4pmDeparture Time: 11am
  • FamilySorry, no children or babies.
  • PracticalitiesThere is a private drive from the estate gates to the house and its designated parking area. The modern kitchen has an electric cooker, hob, microwave, Nespresso coffee machine, dishwasher and a fridge-freezer. Guests can request washing and drying from the main house. Underfloor heating will keep you cosy. During your stay, you may see two full-time gardeners maintaining the extensive parkland, formal gardens and lawns. The lakeside jetty is perfect for fishing, however, please take due care around the water. If arriving by air, helicopters are welcome to land on the grounds.
  • Homestay includesLuxury welcome hamper with homemade items, lakeside jetty, fire pit, TV with Freeview, DVD player and DVDs, charcoal barbecue, linen, towels, logs and kindling to get you started...House book - your property and destination guideDiscover more
  • 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.
  • Other informationProperty terms and conditionsFrequently asked questions

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The well-equipped kitchen at Dragonwood Boat House
Underfloor heating and the giant log burner create a cosy, romantic abode
There is underfloor heating and an Italian log fire to enjoy in colder months

Prices & Availability


Rutland is England’s smallest mainland county and comprises just two towns; the county town of Oakham and the market town of Uppingham, with Rutland Water at its centre.

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Getting there

  • On the Map Dragonwood is three miles from Oakham to the west of Rutland Water.
  • By Car The property is 100 miles from London, approximately a two hour drive.
  • By Train Oakham is the nearest train station. There are direct trains from London to Peterborough (40 minutes away) and Leicester (25 minutes away) with a journey time under one and a half hours.
  • By Air A chauffeur can pick guests up from East Midlands airport on prior request and at an additional cost. Helicopters are welcome to land on the grounds of Dragonwood Boat House or there are private airstrips nearby.

From the owner

“Our unique boathouse is a true jewel set within the crown of our much-loved estate. With 60 acres of private grounds for you to explore, Dragonwood makes an idyllic haven for romantic breaks and solo self-catering escapes.”

From the owner

For over 100 years Dragonwood Estate has been recognised for hosting grand parties and has been connected with the Cottesmore Hunt for centuries. It is part of country life history and has a world-wide reputation as being “the hunting lodge” that royals and dignitaries have visited for generations.

Jan and I discovered Dragonwood after more than two years of house hunting in the early 1990s. We wanted a countryside location with views and land to keep horses, and close to a spirited village with good pubs. Dragonwood met all of our criteria and we fell in love with it; although, when we bought the house it was small, in poor condition and had no garden.

We started with a 10-year plan to upgrade the house; move the stabling, lay out formal gardens (inspired by the Chelsea Flower Show) and create a parkland setting. Once we finished work on the main house, we then set to work building our beautiful boathouse in 2013 and we are very proud of the results.

Away from the main house nestling between lakes and woodland, Dragonwood Boat House is the perfect, private luxury love nest and we hope you agree.

The Saunders Family 

Owner recommendations

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

Country Club Relaxation 

To Do

Country Club Relaxation 

Spend a day at nearby Stapleford Park, where you can indulge in some deluxe pampering at their award-winning spa. With its landscaped gardens, tearoom and championship golf course, there is plenty for everyone at this luxury country house.

Hambleton Hall, Oakham

To Eat

Hambleton Hall, Oakham

Hambleton Hall is renowned for its sophisticated dining with a Michelin-starred chef and an award-winning restaurant. They even have their own Sommelier to ensure your wine choice is as perfect as the food; perfect!

Local Lakes

To See

Local Lakes

With your very own lake on the doorstep, enjoy a gentle paddle in the kayaks provided whenever you please and take in the surrounds. Head to Rutland Water, one of the largest artificial lakes in Europe, and look out for water-birds.

Horse Riding

To Do

Horse Riding

The pretty village of Somerby has a friendly equestrian centre which is a must for horse lovers wanting to go riding during their stay. With the luxury of an indoor and outdoor school, there are opportunities for lessons whatever the weather.

Guest Testimonials

A lovely property in a great location. We will definitely return. This was also the first time we have used Unique Homestays and will certainly look at other properties to visit!

On arrival at Dragonwood Boat House, we immediately thought the house is great! We had everything we possibly needed for our Christmas break and there was an unexpected surprise with the beautiful Christmas tree and decorations! Thank you to everyone!

Many thanks for a wonderful stay in the beautiful Dragonwood Boat House. We loved every minute! We will definitely recommend it to family and friends. Thanks again, to everybody!

Wow! Fabulous! Stunning! Thank you for creating a true gem and sharing this fabulous home stay. Your hosting is exceptional and we will certainly be back. Two very happy people left the beautiful Dragonwood Boat House because they knew they will return!

Simply wow! The most magical three days of escape and tranquility, and the perfect way to celebrate our 15 years of marriage. We don´t want to go back to reality and leave this amazing place. Just what the doctor ordered, every single moment has been special. We would love to come back again, thank you! P.S. the kayaks are great fun.

Everything at Dragonwood Boat House was just as we were hoping it to be, from the welcome hamper, to the beautiful views and complete peace and quiet. Very well equipped home and spotless housekeeping, comfortable bed and magnificent shower.

We recently returned from our honeymoon at Dragonwood Boat House, our stay was fantastic, the facilities were great and the location was a perfect spot to the end of our wedding and reception. We really enjoyed our stay there and would highly recommend to our friends and families who can enjoy a lovely getaway!

What a beautiful place, it was lovely and relaxing. We enjoyed the hamper, what a treat! We loved watching the wildlife and had a wonderful meal at Wildwood in Oakham. Beautiful log burner too.

Really enjoyed our home here, great place for our mini- moon. Recommend Fox and House as they have great food and friendly staff. Rutland Water is also a must and so is Burghley House. Will miss the geese and their goslings, also the resident hare!

Wow, this is a truly special place. We were not here for long enough to make the best use of all of it, but luckily the sun was out and the time that we have spent was wonderful. Everything is so well thought out and the welcome hamper was a delight. Thank you for an unforgettable stay!

It has been an absolutely pleasure to be able to have our wedding celebrations at Dragonwood. We have enjoyed every minute of it and the fabulous boat house. I hope that we will return one weekend for a retreat, so goodbye for now and all the best!

An amazing experience! Around here is a food lovers dream. Very sad to be going. It has made my birthday memorable and will look back at this with fond memories!

Dragonwood Boat House is a fantastic house - really beautiful, a real treat. It is very relaxing with the lake view and log fire. The golf buggy was great fun! It´s a lovely area with Oakham, Stamford and Rutland Water being particular highlights. We also visited Sir Isaac Newton´s house and saw the apple tree. We enjoyed tasty delicious meals at Fox and Hounds pub in Knossington, King Arms Inn at Wing and Wildwood Kitchen in Oakham - definitely try Fox and Hounds, but remember to book!

5 stars! What a great location, house and area! Very romantic and nice to be away and not to see a soul unless you want to. Perfectly private with great weather. We picked up some meat from the markets and enjoyed a barbecue. A short walk away to the Fox and Hounds which is worth visiting, the food is perfect. Rutland water cycle hire is also well worth a visit for great views with plenty of pubs to choose from. We will remember our time here forever.

Sad day today as we leave Dragonwood Boat House. I knew it would be amazing but it far exceeded my expectations. The attention to detail and the thought you have put into the property is second to none. It is now my number one place on the list of Unique Homestays properties. Lovely to lie outside relaxing in the summer sun watching the weeping willow sway around and the only sound is the birds or the champagne popping! What a relaxing week...congratulations on getting it so perfect.

It was a pleasure to stay at Dragonwood Boat House, it is such a well thought out and beautifully styled property. All the properties listed seem to be of this standard, which is why I will continue to use Unique Homestays. Effortless online booking system and great communication throughout.

Dragonwood Boat House was such a perfect place for our little honeymoon. We have been quite happy sitting, relaxing and taking in the view, which is gorgeous. We loved everything and would love to come back soon.

What a fantastic stay we have had! Dragonwood Boat House is beautiful with idyllic surroundings - we would never tire of that beautiful view! We would love to come back. Thank you.

Our stay was to celebrate my 30th Birthday and I must say that it is a Birthday that I will never forget. The Boat House and the grounds of Dragonwood provide a unique and romantic experience. The house is stunning and we are sad to be leaving, can´t wait to visit again (so I can go in the lake!)

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 Dragonwood Boat House and 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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