Escape the city and breathe the Buckinghamshire air in a modern marvel of a place packed with toys and trinkets and dressed to the nines. Bourne House invites well-behaved dogs and 14 even-better-behaved mature adults to jump into the pool, explore the one-acre garden, and pile into the cinema room and games room.
So there’s a pool? Yes, a 30-foot outdoor pool heated throughout the summer months. Dive in, cool off, then towel down and head to the gym to pound the treadmill and Peloton. When you’re done, the garden offers table tennis and the games room, table football. It’s Toys R Us in one gigantic fount of fun.
Hang out in the hot tub and stare at the stars, roam the one-acre garden, sit out in the sunshine on the courtyard terrace. Charge your electric car for free, run your empire from the boardroom, enjoy wet rooms, walk-in showers and movie-star bedrooms. Relax, recharge, and grab a fistful of fun and frolics.
Outside, things revolve around the fenced garden courtyard. Bung your bangers on the gas barbie and eat, drink and be merry out there around the table on the huge deck beneath the palm trees. Squint and you could be on the Spanish coast.
Play table tennis out in the sunshine, swim in the 30-foot pool that’s heated from April to September, and stay wet to hop into the eight-seater hot tub and bubble the night away.
Let’s begin with the fun stuff, and end with it, too, since every room here offers toys, trinkets and treats for cross-generational families and friends looking to unwind, rewind or just wind up in front of the telly after a hard day’s doing nothing. You’ll need a good excuse, though.
Some home gyms can seem a bit thin. Not here, though. Pound your way through routines on the Peloton bike, the treadmills, free weights, cross-trainer, bar weights and power plate. When you’re done, recharge in the bar over a pint or a Prosecco while you thump everyone at table footy and share some sounds on the jukebox.
With its soft sofas and subdued spotlighting, the bar doubles as a cinema room. Catch a match or find yourself a film on Freesat, Netflix or Amazon Prime Video. You’ve got TVs in the kitchen and living room, too, for alternative viewing. Stream and surf at 50Mbs, hook up to the Bluetooth, charge your electric car. The toys keep coming.
Musical? Tinkle away on the baby grand. Need to call a work pow-wow? Pile into the boardroom. Bag a book from the library. Lob another log on the fire. Bourne House is a big beautiful bolthole laced with tasteful bling. Just a short hop from London, it’s a restful oasis in an increasingly crazy world.
Facilities here are as fabulous as you’d expect. Cook on two ovens and three hobs and pile the three freezers high with meat from The Butcher’s Tap, fish from Phil Bowditch’s, and the fridges with veg from The Fruit Market in Bourne End. Keep the toaster and butter on late-night standby.
Eat around the 14-seat table in the dining room, or out on the deck in the sunshine, with steaks and sausages smoking away on the gas barbecue. Top up your drinks from the bar and the ice machine, and wrap things up with a latte from the Miele coffee machine. Or just take it easy and let our professional chefs do the heavy lifting.
Out and about, options abound. From the three-starred Michelin excellence of Heston Blumenthal’s Fat Duck, with its snail porridge and crab ice cream, to homely pubs such as The Chequers Inn at Wooburn Green with oak beams and flagstone floors, and a menu that ranges from the comfortable to the sophisticated.
Elsewhere, head out to Brasserie Blanc in Beaconsfield for pan-fried stone bass or duck-leg cassoulet. Or to The Hand and Flowers: the only pub in the UK with two Michelin stars. Try the tasting menu or afternoon tea at The Cliveden Dining Room. Or maybe classic Thai cuisine at the Crazy Bear, served with lashings of pure opulence.
Who gets the en-suite bedrooms? Everyone. Sleeping 14 in seven palatial bedrooms plus sofa beds, Bourne House is as swish and spectacular in the sleep department as it is everywhere else.
Bedroom one is a superking, while bedrooms two and four are king-size. Bedroom three offers twin beds and the remaining rooms are all doubles. All bedrooms will take a cot.