If you are looking for a totally unique countryside escape in the UK without the weather necessarily affecting your plans, the Sherwood Hideaway is the place to go. Set in an idyllic clearing within the heart of the Thoresby Estate, the Hideaway makes for a fantastic experience with a range of14 Contemporary and Traditional lodges all designed to reflect the colours and materials of the ancient and enchanting Sherwood Forest surrounds.
The hideaway is 20 miles north of Nottingham and 10 miles north east of Mansfield, only a short distance off of the M1 motorway. Our one piece of advice is not to rely on Sat Nav. The postcode took us 10 miles away, so follow the website directions from Ollerton. Frustration aside as soon as we walked into our lodge, all was forgotten…. Wow! Our rustic VIP lodge was absolutely stunning! Open plan living area with AGA wood burning stove, separate dining area, and kitchen area fully fitted to a high standard. The bedrooms were beautiful, a twin room for the kids, and an en suite double bedroom with walk-in shower. Our belongings packed neatly away, we finally settled in and enjoyed the complimentary bottle of white wine in the lodge`s own hot tub.
The hideaway offers three types of lodge: traditional, rustic and contemporary with two or three bedroom options and therefore sleeping a maximum of 6. Our Rustic VIP lodge was faultless. As an architect with a focus on ancient buildings, I was genuinely impressed with the attention to detail. Benches by the door for shoes, electrical sockets by mirrors for hair drying, ample storage and excellent mood lighting. The lodges are fully equipped with everything you need from ironing boards to dishwasher tablets, and the luxuries that make the experience such as the hot tub, wood burning stove and iPod dock. Privacy has been dealt with too, the lodges are a good distance apart and screens and blinds provided so that you don’t feel overlooked.
The site is immaculate and manned and maintained by a friendly team of staff. The lodges are cleaned to an exceptional standard, and have the feeling that they have never been used before.
Our children are young, aged 4 and 8, and I have to confess that I was initially concerned that there would be very little to occupy them. Cycle hire provides entertainment for older children and teenagers, but our youngest is too small to keep up. I need not have worried as the hot tub provided entertainment all weekend long, despite snow and rain, this really made the difference for a break away at this time of the year. There are plenty of stunning walks throughout the forest and the Thoresby Hall is only a two-mile walk, or a 5-minute drive, which is advisable at night as there`s no lighting along the way. The house is designed by leading Victorian architect, Sir Anthony Salvin, and the grounds by Sir Capability Brown and Humphry Repton. Now under the ownership of Warner Hotels, it has a gym, fitness studio and a pool. Day passes are available, to those over eighteen, at a discounted rate for Hideaway guests.
If you can bear to tear yourself away from your lodge there are plenty of places to eat out nearby. The reception lodge provides a good list of pubs and restaurants, all within a short distance of the site. If you prefer to eat in there is a Tesco and various takeaways nearby. We drove out to a local pub in Laxton before returning to spent the evening relaxing in front of the wood-burning stove.
The Sherwood Hideaway really gave us an opportunity to relax in style and the chance to spend quality time together. With plans for expansion, we look forward to returning to see how the Hideaway grows, and the opportunity to stay in one of the brand new lodges (hint, hint)!
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