Who says romance is reserved for Paris? For those crossing the pond and seeking an escape for two, the English countryside has much to offer. Tucked away on sprawling farmland, in corners of heritage estates and nature reserves, these bucolic cottages, cabins and hotels offer a secluded retreat in striking surroundings, with cozy interiors, state-of-the-art wellness facilities and good food to boot.
At Aller Dorset, former fashion PR Cat Earp and her husband Ant have put a stylish spin on two shepherd’s huts—wagons typically made of corrugated iron, which in recent years have been popularized as cozy glamping accommodation. Set in a magical location on Ant’s family farm overlooking a lake (cool dips encouraged), the huts come with seductive outdoor baths, cozy fire pits and breakfast hampers filled with locally sourced food, as well as thoughtful interiors, packed with details such as handmade glassware. For a dinner that’s a cut above the rest, book local catering company Flames and Feasts, who will cook up a storm on the fire pit for you.
Discover more about Aller Dorset here.
Set within 66 acres of meadow, woodland and oak-lined streams, Cornwall’s Coombeshead is both a working farm and a guesthouse. Its old Grain Store has recently been transformed into four guest bedrooms, which have been thoughtfully decorated with roll-top baths, velvet upholstery and sheepskin rugs. They are just the ticket for sauntering to, via the courtyard, after a sublime five-course dinner at the intimate resident restaurant, where dishes are made using produce from the farm.
Discover more about Grain Store at Coombeshead Farm here.
A 5,000-acre estate with a symphony of lakes, wetland and ancient woodland, Wilderness Reserve in Suffolk is less wild than its name suggests, thanks to its carefully landscaped grounds which were based upon an unexecuted plan by Capability Brown. The newest addition to its large portfolio of historic and traditional properties is Hayjack, a thatched lakeside hideaway for two with eclectic interiors and parkland views. Guests here are privy to their own spa—complete with sauna and steam rooms—as well as a hot tub, private jetty, row boat and paddleboard.
Discover more about Hayjack at Wilderness Reserve here.
A village pub with rooms, located on the Duke of Somerset’s Wiltshire estate, The Bradley Hare punches well above its weight—largely thanks to having ex-Soho House designer James Thurstan Waterworth at the interiors helm. Beautiful antiques and freestanding baths, plus excellent food, wine and local beers, make it a winner for comfortable stays—even more so with five-star country hotel The Newt, trendy art gallery Hauser and Wirth and the historic towns of Bruton, Bath and Frome all nearby.
Discover more about The Bradley Hare here.
A so-called “deconstructed hotel”, The Tawny in Staffordshire has taken the best bits of a country house escape and scattered them across Consall Hall Gardens’ 70-acre estate, which dates back to 1246. Among the historic gardens and five lakes, you’ll find 55 low-impact cabins, a heated outdoor pool, wellness center and sustainable-first restaurant focused on local produce. Check in at one of two Hillside Treehouses for views across the Laund Pool lake, jewel-toned interiors and a private outdoor bath.
Discover more about Hillside Treehouse at The Tawny here.
Words by Kate Lough and Ellen Millard.