In order to help our customers choose the perfect accommodation, we send our team out to scope out our properties and make sure we’ve got as much info on them as possible. We also get amazing photos so you can see exactly how beautiful they are. Our house photographer Laeti recently went to see our luxury holiday homes and cottages in the UK, travelling around the south of England. She’s written us a blog about her adventures, which you can read below!
Tell us where you’ve been…
What was the highlight of the trip?
The highlight of the trip was whilst walking on Dymchurch beach. I picked up a seashell and it took me back 10 years to when I was running on the beaches with my cousin and uncle, hunting for the most beautiful seashells! It used to be a race and a contest, and just finding this one made me the happiest person in the world. Dymchurch also has a mini fair with lots of games for children, who were running around everywhere. It was fascinating to observe families and parents running after their kids and children trying to escape their older siblings!
What and where was your best foodie moment?
There were two best foodie moments! The first one was in a cake shop next to Landscove House. I only had this one property to photograph that day and so decided to get some lunch. They had a selection of cakes, each looking tastier than the next. Just the thought of them now makes my mouth water again! I decided to go for a different version of the Victoria Sponge and try the Passion Fruit Sponge (and a little piece of chocolate cake, but no one needs to know about that…), accompanied by breakfast tea. This little coffee spot is in the middle of beautiful gardens, full of colourful flowers!
The second foodie moment was in between two properties – Wellington Manor and Blackdown Manor. The owner had to attend a meeting and so I decided to drive to Wellington village and have a hot chocolate whilst reading a terrible novel I had bought in a garden centre. Coffee #1 makes the most amazing hot chocolate. Add a little whipped cream and chocolate sprinkles, and it is simply heaven for the taste buds. They also had an exchange/donation book table where you could bring one of your books and exchange it for another or drop a few pounds in a plastic box and take any you fancied. I saw a little boy find a Princess Diana biography, and then show it to his mum who nearly ran and fell to take it before anyone else did!
Favourite property that you saw and why?
Quite a few properties stood out on this trip!
The Gothic Victorian Manor for its magnificent flower gardens and its grandeur. All the rooms are huge, the ceilings are high, and all the furniture respects the building’s architecture and feel. It is beautifully decorated.
C17th Castle stood out because of its original architecture, each tower having a different function, but the castle still has space in the kitchen and living room to enjoy friends and family. It is also close to Clevedon, a very pretty English town.
I also liked Landscove House because of the land surrounding it and the view from the top of the hill. Behind it there is a hill where you can see the whole of the property and a beautiful view on the hills of South West England. It is breathtaking!
For anyone travelling to the South of England, what can’t they miss?
Several things. Brighton is a must – there are arcades for the kids, pubs for the grown ups and a lot of shopping, especially on the Lanes! There is also a part of the city where all the streets intertwine, making it impossible to know which ones you have seen and which ones you haven’t. They have amazing cake, jewellery and souvenirs shops. The streets are also covered with colourful and challenging graffiti, some defending a cause, others just expressing their art. Brighton is definitely a city to explore!
Buchan Country Park is another hidden gem in the South. It is next to a very busy main road but as soon as you enter, no traffic, no cars, and no horrific city sounds can be heard. A lake stands in the middle with the forest surrounding it. Some parts of the forest have been selected to encourage special plants and animals – mushrooms, wild fruits, insects… After walking inside the forest, if you take the right path you will end up in a clearing full of purple flowers. They could be mistaken for lavender but they are not. Beauts! There is also a deer carved in a tree! It isn’t indicated, just need to look very closely!
Weston-super-Mare is another town to go to! Having an afternoon with no properties to see I decided to venture straight into it. Dismaland, an interesting exhibition of several artists including Bansky, was happening at the time. This town is full of things to do. There is the beach of course, an immense pier and not far from it an aquarium! There is also the high street, many restaurants and things to visit there. Definitely somewhere to stop by!
Check out other places the team has been to lately!