When things get chilly in this country, lots of folk fly off to the sun. Don’t blame them. It is nice to be warm, after all. However, flying off is not the only way to get a change of temperature. You could always stay right here in the UK, grab yourself a bit of time in a hot tub, spend your days heating up in a warm place much closer to home.
In case you’re wondering what gives, I’m talking here about the wonderful world of luxury lodges.
Landal GreenParks UK
Must admit, before I went to one of their properties I had never even heard of Landal GreenParks UK. Which is odd because apparently they’re the UK’s fastest growing holiday resort company and help over 3 million guests a year make the most of their time together. Which sounds like something it would have been helpful to have known before now.
From what it says on their blurb, and I quote; “their holidays are all about finding the perfect balance between getting away from it all, getting back to nature and enjoying life’s luxuries. In places where families and friends can enjoy the great outdoors, whilst being at one with nature in stunning natural surroundings, from idyllic countryside to beautiful coastlines.”
Hardly surprising they’re all so excited by life. They were only launched in 2017 and now they have 19 locations across Cornwall, The Lake District, Yorkshire, Lincolnshire, Wales, and Scotland, each of which offers a combination of on-park facilities and luxury accommodation with a strong outdoor focus, helping guests get closer to nature.
Having read all that breathless copy there was only one thing for it: had to try it out for myself. So, after a suitable pause, a couple of friends and I packed our bags, jumped on our motorbikes and headed down to Landal Clowance Estate, Cornwall.
The estate is all the way down in the tippy toe of Cornwall, which basically means you get on the A30 and follow it until you find yourself somewhere between Camborne and Helston. A lovely part of the world in anyone’s book.
Makes a very pleasant journey too. When we were there it was full of wind and rain but somehow still managed to look ruggedly glorious and almost edibly cute. Upon arrival, you turn off from a country lane and find yourself passing through a tree lined, neatly maintained, good old fashioned, country estate. Makes you feel quite spoilt just being there.
The estate has a warm, welcoming feel, comfy as an old pair of shoes. Hardly a surprise as it has been around since the dark ages, owned by the St Aubyn family since the 14th century, who made a fortune from farming and mining many moons ago.
But that was then. This is now. These days, it is all mod cons with no corners cut.
The old house is still there in most of its glory, with a magnificent croquet lawn out front, along with a picturesque lake beyond. All around are the typical trinkets of a Georgian estate: stable block, orangery, coach house. The usual suspects from way back when.
All of which have been tastefully updated, either converted into holiday lets, or turned into places for fun and frolics. A large part of the park is ancient woodland and everywhere you look, sprinkled in and around it, like hundreds and thousands on a cupcake, are a collection of cutesy looking, clean edged, luxury lodges.
Our lodge slept 6 people in 3 bedrooms. With crisp white cotton sheets, dreamy soft mattresses and plenty of room to hang your clothes.
It had all the essentials you could possibly hope for, including Wifi throughout, naturally. For starters, there was a kitchen ready to rock’n’roll, with top drawer appliances and fab fittings in every corner. Even the cutlery was a treat. So sleek, solid and shiny it brought a smile to the face every time you picked it up.
The living area had enough space for stretching out, staying in and enjoying the mahoosive TV. And throughout, wherever you looked, there were discreet radiators, blasting out that all essential warmth; generating enough heat to shoe a flock of small horses, if that’s your thing.
Either way, it’s a reminder that there really is no need to get on a plane to enjoy limitless heat and happiness. It can be found much closer to home.
If all of that wasn’t enough, right outside the living room, behind a wall of floor to ceiling glass, was a patio facing the forest, with a super sized hot tub taking centre stage.
First thing we did after unpacking was grab a bottle of fizz from the fridge, pick up a bunch of plastic glasses, and hit the hot tub. Bubbles amongst the bubbles was the order of the day. We sat there long enough to watch the sun go down and the stars come out.
Really is the easiest way to get into that rockstar groove I have ever come across.
Upstairs from the onsite reception is a bar restaurant affair, apparently. Didn’t get round to trying it out ourselves, though the staff seemed very smiley and friendly. Maybe next time.
Gym , Pool & Spa
There are a host of other delights onsite too: tennis courts, golf course, gym, indoor pool and spa, but in truth, we just didn’t get round to giving any of them a whirl.
We were too busy having a blast in our very own private hot tub heaven. Sigh. Did I mention that every lodge has one?
A short stroll through the woods takes you to Praze en Beebles. A village that grew up to service the estate many centuries ago. These days it is a bustling little metropolis, with a row of granite cottages on the high street, along with a bunch of useful shops.
A local village stores, fish’n’chip shop, bakery and pub, the St Aubyn Arms. All of them filled with friendly folk who were more than happy to stop and chat.
One evening, we went to the pub for a meal and found it wasn’t serving food, so went to the chippy instead. After asking where we could go to eat our supper and get out of the wind, we found ourselves sitting in the pub, munching our chips happily. We sipped on pints of the good stuff with the complete blessing of the decidedly excellent landlady.
All in all, one of the loveliest and most welcoming evenings I have spent in Cornwall for quite some time.
Out and About
Normally, on a break like this, with a few days and nights in hand, we’d be good to go off and explore the places round and about; find what else the area has to offer.
However, the whole estate was so easy to spend time on, so pleasant to wander round, we didn’t get further than the local village. The rest of the time was spent going for strolls in the woods, or hanging out in the lodge. When we weren’t lazing around inside, we were outside enjoying long – and I do mean long – languid sessions in the hot tub.
We were out there in rain, shine, wind and moonlight. After every dip, we headed indoors to enjoy the super centrally heated lodge, chilling out in front of the flickering fire. Most marvellous.
If you are looking to get away from it all, get back to nature or just get on with enjoying life’s little luxuries, these luscious, luxurious and rather stylish lodges with hot tubs, indulgent extras and pet- friendly options, might just be what you are looking for.
They’re just the ticket for UK staycations, come rain or shine, whether you’re looking for weekends away or weeks to relax in. If you like glorious green forests, heavenly hot tubs or wandering through woodlands, then this park could be the perfect place for quality time with your friends, family and furry companions. LandalGreenparks. Happily recommended.