Stay in the Padstow Townhouse, a grade II-listed 18th century bolthole just down the road from Paul Ainsworth’s eponymous Michelin-starred restaurant. There’s an electric BMW chauffeur service if you’re coming via train, and Paul’s sister Michelle runs the B&B, so expect plenty of homely Cornish charm here (it’s just around the corner from Rick Stein’s Café too – book into both if you can).
Fancy a trip north? Hit the Lake District when the weather’s right and you’ll be treated to some of the most stunning landscapes in the UK. And if the fog rolls in? It’s hot tub time. At Gilpin Hotel & Lake House, rooms in the main hotel each have private gardens and a cedarwood hot tub, or gather up some friends and book out the six suites of the lake house (a mile away from the hotel) for your own private lake, indoor pool and jetty spa.
Want to stay nearer the city? The Cotswolds are just a short drive away so more practical if you only have a weekend. Try the Artist Residence in Oxfordshire, a 16th century thatched cottage inn that mixes modern interior touches with the best of the British countryside. If you’re really in need of some downtime, there’s no need to travel any further – The Mason Arms downstairs features foraged produce, local ales and a roaring fire.
A luxurious gourmet B&B in the Inner Hebrides? If you’re willing to make the journey, you’ll be rewarded with the labour of love from Mint Croft, with just three old crofters’ cottages perched above the sea on the Isle of Skye. Coastal walks, sea air, long baths and maybe (finally) making a start on this year’s reading list are all the name of the game here.
The Pig know how to do winter getaways – from the New Forest to Studland (we love twilight with a G&T looking out on the coast here), they have cosy, right-side-of-traditional stays down to a T. They’ve just opened the Pig at Combe, set in an Elizabethan country house (we say castle!) in the Otter Valley. Inside, it’s not so traditional after all, with the Great Hall turned into the main bar, stable bedrooms and kitchen gardens. And look out for their Cornwall opening next year.
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