Cornish Retreats

From the unusual to the super luxurious, Cornwall has a mind boggling selection of places to stay. To help you pick the perfect spot Abena Bailey gives you the inside story on her favourite coastal retreats.

It has the best seat in the house.

Chegwidden Farm in St Levan is a must for families and anyone who loves the theatre, animals and beach life.

The 17th century self-catering farmhouse, which sleeps six people, is a stone’s throw away from The Minack Theatre − an openair
stage carved out of the side of a cliff that overlooks Porthcurno Beach and the sea.

For more than 80 years people have travelled from all over the world to experience plays set against the theatre’s breathtaking backdrop.

The season runs from March until the end of September. Theatre-goers watch evening shows under the cover of the stars or take a
picnic for a matinee performance.

Chegwidden is also ideally located for surfing at Sennen Cove, St Ives and The Tate Gallery and visitors can even sail from Penzance to
the Isles of Scilly for under £40.

There is a wealth of places to explore but don’t forget to enjoy Chegwidden by lazing in the hot tub and the kids will love meeting the
farmyard animals.


I do like to be beside the seaside.

For those who want to stay as close to the sea as possible, bar living on a boat, The House in the Sea in Newquay does what it says on
the tin.

People may think private islands are a privilege of the aristocracy and the famous, but this elegant cottage perched on a granite rock is accessed by an exclusive footbridge above the beach.

It means guests have the best sightseeing experience in town with a 360 degree view of the Atlantic at high tide.

Formerly owned by Lord and Lady Long, The House in the Sea has been snapped up by new owners, who are currently renovating it
into a modern self-catering holiday home that will sleep eight people. It is planned to reopen this April.

Guests will be able to enjoy the solitude and all day sunshine of the location or easily pop into the hustle and bustle of Newquay.

Go kite surfing, bar hopping or take a short drive to taste the offerings at Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen restaurant at nearby Watergate Bay or
take in the wonders of The Eden project in St Austell. Unique Home Stays, which manages the property, also provides an adventure
butler service that can arrange anything from food foraging to horse riding.


A real wow factor.

Perched in the centre of Penzance The  Egyptian House is not a place that people can walk past without stopping in their tracks to
admire it or take a photograph.

An eccentric’s dream, this highly flamboyant three storey property set among a row of old sea captains’ houses in Chapel Street was
built in 1835 by John Foulston.

It has an ornate façade of lotus columns and stylized cornices that is so over-the-top it looks very much out of place alongside its twee neighbouring buildings but that is also why it is so charming.

The property is a rare survivor of a trend that spread across the country after Napoleon’s campaign in Egypt in 1798.

The Landmark Trust acquired it in 1968 and converted the interior inkeeping with the Edwardian style.

Inside there are three apartments on as many floors. Floor one sleeps three while the other two floors each have enough room for four people.

The rocky island of St Michael’s Mount and Mounts Bay can be spied from the top floor.

Right on the doorstep of the house guests can enjoy the vintage experience of Chapel Street with its independent book stores, antique shops, vintage fashion boutiques, restaurants and taverns selling ales and local ciders. Plus the beach is a five minute stroll and there
are an abundance of art galleries along the way.


Rest your weary head.

When peace and relaxation are top of the wish list, the Scarlet Hotel in Mawgan Porth is an obvious choice.

This eco-chic escape may have an interior that looks as if Laurence Llewelyn Bowen was let loose on it but what makes the cliff-top property special is its focus on chilling out.

The views of Mawgan Porth Beach from every room, an infinity pool that flows towards the Atlantic, a natural reed-bed swimming pool, log-fired hot tubs, rooftop baths that look over the sea and the Ayurvedic spa ensure the calming effects of water are with guests at all times.

The Scarlet is a adults-only getaway that has 37 individually designed rooms with highlights that include ocean views, private gardens and rooftop pods.

The spa has hanging canvas pods to slumber in, rooms to meditate in and escape packages tailored to help sleep or to sooth stress and combat those side effects of a fast-paced life.

From laughter yoga, singing and meditation to kayaking, horse riding and speed boating, guests can do as little or as much as they want during their stay.

It truly is a holistic experience topped with the piece of mind that the company’s dedication to sustainability means all these indulgences won’t cost the environment.


By Abena Bailey

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