Wilderness Reserve, Suffolk, UK
13 January, 2017
Sprawled out across the East Anglian countryside, luxury estate Wilderness Reserve spans 5000 acres of preserved meadows, woodland and lakes, positioning itself as the go-to for a quintessential English stay. Choose between rustic cottages, farmhouses or a converted barn, with Georgian manor house Sibton Park offering a Downton Abbey-esque experience thanks to traditional decor, a formal dining room and private courtyard. The Walled Garden is the estate's most recent addition - an updated Victorian bothy which feels more modern than the other accommodations. While Sibton Park's grand interior makes for a hideaway worth exploring, the Walled Garden's impressive glass expansion makes you want to throw open the windows and doors and revel in the glory of the rolling English countryside. It's exterior comprises three glass houses which drench the open-plan kitchen and living area in sunlight, accentuating the property's oak furnishings and central baronial hall. Looking out of the windows you'll see the beautiful restored Victorian garden, a green oasis within the high walls which conceal this secret garden escape.
Wilderness Reserve, Suffolk
The house includes eight en-suite bedrooms placed around the sides of the central hall. Comfort is key - the king-sized beds are made by Hypnos, the same bed company that supply Buckingham Palace. Each room is uniquely decorated, though all channel contemporary farmhouse charm with touches of gingham. The real focal points are the baths; most rooms feature standalone, vintage-style tubs with mounted antique taps. If you book into the largest room, you'll enjoy the houses only sunken bath - ideal for wallowing in with a glass of wine.
What's for breakfast?
Breakfast is at your discretion. Make the most of the well-stocked kitchen by creating your own or enjoy a long, lazy brunch cooked by your very own chef. Think fresh bread, organic eggs, locally sourced ingredients and seasonal fruits and berries.
How about lunch and dinner?
Again, it's up to you - discuss menus with chefs to curate a food experience which is specifically suited to you. If you're there in summer, we recommend arranging a luxurious picnic hamper to be taken outdoors. Cured meats, local cheeses, pork pies and scotch eggs make for a brilliantly British feast, with scones, clotted cream and preserves provided (as well champagne, of course). Dinner can be arranged as you like, be it a casual supper, formal banquet in the dining hall or a BBQ under the stars.
Is there a bar?
No, but there's a wine fridge which can be stocked from the estate's cellar.
Enjoy table tennis or ping pong in the games room or head outside where you'll find tennis courts and bikes, as well as the option to row or paddle-board on the lakes. Hidden out of sight in a grassy hollow, you'll find the heated pool designed by landscape architect Kim Wilkie. If sports aren't your thing, retreat to the cinema room to kick back in front of the 110-inch flatscreen or get stuck into some board games.
Things you should know
It's a two-hour train journey from London and you can arrange to be picked up from the station, just ten minutes away. Extra housekeeping and spa treatments can be added on at your request - just drop them an email in advance.
Within a short walk you can find…
The small village of Yoxford has several gastropubs and restaurants; we recommend Main's. Just a short drive away you can also find Southwold, a small seaside town where you can round off your very English weekend with a visit to the pier for some fish and chips.