Occasionally I like to fantasise about the perfect proposal in hope that before I wither away, Si will one day pop the question. When I suggested to my mate Hannah, that I would be happy with a cheeky Nando’s takeaway with a side of the big-fat diamond ring, she was quick to call my bluff and call BS. Honestly, I’m a homely girl at heart! But in the interest of getting carried away and imagining the ultimate proposal, how about somewhere glamorous like on-board the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express from London to Venice? How spesh would that be?! With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, don’t let your imagination get the better of you; surprise your loved one with a weekend away at one of these romantic British properties.
Whitsand Bay, Cornwall, UK
Perched on top of a cliff with breath-taking views overlooking Whitsand Bay, The Edge is a luxurious self-catering beach cabin that will provide the ultimate romantic coastal escape for you and your loved one.
The modern eco-friendly Cornish beach cabin features floor-to-ceiling windows, ensuring there is always an incredible view for you to feast your eyes on. Outside, there is a sun deck with a Jacuzzi, and for summer months, a BBQ to help get the most of the uninterrupted panoramic sea views. When you’re not snuggling by the wood burning stove, venture out on one of the many nature walks for some fresh air. Even your furry-four-legged companions are welcome to stay!
Rates from £1,995 for 3 nights over Valentine’s Day period, via Unique Home Stays,
+44 (0) 1637 881183.
Daylesford Organic Farm
Daylesford is best known for their organic, seasonal and delicious food. Just 90 minutes from London, their pretty property in the Cotswold’s is also home to several beautifully converted farmhouses that have been restored to retain their original features. The cottages provide the ultimate retreat and include a relaxing one-hour treatment in their Bamford Haybarn Spa for every adult guest staying. They also offer cooking classes (now on sale offering 20% off full-day courses until 31 March), or floristry workshops if that tickles your fancy.
Foodies will be in heaven; you are spoilt for choice when it comes to dining. Choose from one of their farm shop restaurants or dine at their sister pub, The Wild Rabbit in the nearby village of Kingham.
Rates from £2,160 for 4 nights over Valentine’s Day period, via Daylesford Organic Farm.
Gilpin Hotel & Lake House
If the beachside and farm stay breaks don’t float your boat, how about an idyllic lake house? Gilpin Hotel & Lake House is one of the most exquisite hotels in the Lake District. In actual fact, the family-run properties offer guests one of two hotels based on their requirements and ensure guests have a memorable experience with warm friendly service.
For Michelin starred dining at HRiSHi (and the more casual Gilpin Spice), a Champagne Bar, lounge, terraces and a croquet lawn, book Gilpin Hotel. Spoil yourself with a glass of bubbles whilst soaking away your cares in a cedar-wood hot tub, taking in the stunning Lakeland and garden views.
Just a mile away from Gilpin Hotel you will find the Gilpin Lake House; a hideaway for just 12 guests. The exclusive property offers 100 secluded acres of private grounds to enjoy, with its own lake, boat house, hot tubs, saunas, and a swimming pool.
Rates from £925 for 3 nights over Valentine’s Day period, via Gilpin.
Malvern Hills, Worcestershire, UK
Tucked away in the tranquil rolling hills of Malvern, you will find this stunning barn conversion, amongst 16 acres of lush acreage. The rustic 16th Century and Grade-II listed property will be sure to inspire romance and is nestled between an orchard and private fishing lake. It has been restored with care to retain original features and charm, whilst complimented by luxurious finishes. Enjoy hikes through the unspoilt countryside, gently canoe downstream on the river Wye; or as the sun sets, take a more leisurely approach and relax by the firepit on your cobbled patio with a lantern in one hand and a flask of cocoa in the other watching the moon dance over the water’s surface. This secret hideaway is the perfect couples’ retreat.
Rates from £745 for 3 nights over Valentine’s Day period, via Unique Home Stays,+44 (0) 1637 881183.
Belmond British Pullman
Departures from London Victoria, UK
Well, I could hardly suggest an escapade on a romantic train as the ultimate proposal and then not include it in my post 😉 Belmond offers the most incredible experience to travel in the style of the golden age of travel and have a variety of destinations to choose from.
The Belmond British Pullman has been lovingly revived to a throwback to the heyday of travel. The 1920s carriages capture the vintage style and the sophistication of the art-deco era. Onboard you will be offered award-winning dining made from locally sourced, seasonal ingredients served to the highest of standards. The glorious steam train provides the perfect setting for enchanting adventure as you rattle through the British countryside on one of their many enticing day trips.
This Valentine’s Day, join the British Pullman with your loved one for an exclusive Valentine’s Day lunch. You will be welcomed onboard with a glass of chilled champagne as the train makes its way through the picturesque Kent countryside, followed by a delicious five-course meal with wine. This glamorous gastronomic journey is sure to be a hit.
Rates £415 pp, for a day trip via Belmond.
Great Tew, Chipping Norton, UK
Soho Farmhouse is a recent addition to the ever-expanding portfolio of Soho House. This exclusive members’ club-style ‘resort’ perfectly combines rustic cabins with all of the creature comforts of boho London, set in 100 acres of pristine Oxfordshire countryside. It’s easy to see why it has become a favourite amongst celebrities including Jemima Khan and Mark Ronson.
There is a fabulous selection of restaurants and bars to dine in and wet your whistle. And the boathouse, featuring an indoor and outdoor pool on a lake, is nothing short of impressive. Electric Cinema brings you an opulent viewing experience in the style of a grand theatre, dripping in oodles of crushed red velvet.
There is loads to do on the farm. Members and guests can trot about on a pony, burn off calories at a state of the art gym, smash out a grand slam on the perfectly manicured grassed tennis courts, take a leisurely row around the lake, unwind in the exclusive Cowshed spa, or even hit the pitch in a friendly five-a-side football match. There is also a gorgeous shop on site shop selling everything from freshly cut flowers, fine wine, homewares, fashion and a selection of locally sourced cheeses and farm produce. This is the perfect option for any city-slicker couple looking for a few days retreat from the hustle and bustle of the big smoke.
Rates from £885 for 3 nights over Valentine’s Day period, via Soho Farmhouse.
I hope Cupid is kind to you this Valentine’s Day. Mwah! Until next time, safe travels.
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