What’s R and R to you? Rest and recuperation? Or revved-up and raring to go? Crunch over the long gravel drive here and prepare for either, or both. Hens and stags will be close to the buzzing beat of bohemian Bristol, while families can be immersed in the sound of silence, broken only by the odd heron or the swoop of sailboats over the lake.
Behind the gated entry to Somerset’s Kingsley Estate, sleeping 26 across two properties, stress is impossible. In Lakeview’s snug, the 52” Sky TV competes with the lake panorama beyond the full-length windows. Chat as you chop in the open-plan layout. Bubble and boil in the hot tub. Shoot some pool in the sports bar.
Kingsley Estate is all things to everyone: a rural escape for family with celebration or recalibration in mind, or a palace with Prosecco on the menu and pre-nuptial partying in the air. Chink glasses in the clean air, pop to the pub, soak up the sun, wiggle your toes in front of the woodburners. Live it large in a luxurious haven.
The two acres of landscaped gardens and grounds shelve away down to Chew Valley Lake, where the great crested grebes, the gadwalls and the tufted ducks compete quietly for your attention with the serene sailboats that glide across the water.
Closer to hand, you’ve a barbie to light on the terrace. Wash down your steaks and sausages with fizz and beer from the marble bar and an outdoor dining experience that takes in views of the Mendip Hills. When you’re done, the hot tub’s ready and waiting with its thermal therapy.
Spaces here are gorgeous, grand and geared for fun. You’ll get your hopes up as your car crunches across the gravel on the long drive up to the door, and the grandeur doesn’t let up on the other side. Although with outside furniture on the terrace, the sun out and the view of the lake and the Mendips, we’ll forgive you if you camp outside.
Inside each property, there’s warmth aplenty thanks to underfloor heating and the logburner that lights up the Lakeview snug. This is the place for family, friends, hens and stags to get together over blockbuster movies and big matches, with full Sky package, Netflix and all the wifi you need. The Paddocks even offers a terrace TV.
The living area in the sociable open-plan space is your escape plan: the views of the lake and the Mendips come at you in surround-sound cinemascope through the full-height windows. Drink them in with a book and a bottle of fizz. Open the doors, spill out onto the terrace with a sundowner and let your music meander out there with you.
Or maybe you’ll spend your evening in Lakeview’s sports bar. Keep the beers coming from behind the wooden bar as you chalk up your cue, rack up the balls and showcase the skills you acquired in your mis-spent youth. Or just rattle the piano. Keep the doors open to the terrace, the landscape and the lake.
Spaces don’t get much more sociable than the Lakeview’s kitchen/dining/living area that opens up before you here. Chop, chatter and channel your inner Gordon Ramsay on the fan oven with induction hob. Revel in the worktop space, the island spaces, the informal-eating space, and the space for just sitting around and being you.
Make great meals happen with the American-style fridge/freezer, drinks fridge and microwave. The Paddocks also comes with a contemporary, fully equipped kitchen. Eat out on the terrace with views across to the lake and the Mendip hills. Or pile everyone into Lakeview’s dining room and keep up with the sporting action on the wall TV.
Pop out to the Bear and Swan, a rustic village local with squint beams and rough-stone walls serving locally sourced pub grub. You’ve more pub classics to pick from at The Queens. Or will it be Wiltshire ham hock or 28-day dry-aged steak from The Pelican? Wash them down with cocktails or beer from its own Butcombe Brewery.
Head to Bristol for cosmopolitan cuisine, including Italian at Purezza, Asian at the Coronation Curry House, Lebanese at Baba Ganoush and Jamaican at Caribbean Croft. Prefer a little medium rare on the menu? Get your tender steaks from Pasture. Stuck for a Sunday roast? Chris and Jo’s Kitchen comes with the best reviews in town.
You’ll sleep deliciously deeply here, with lake and landscape views and room for plenty – 26 across the two properties, with flexibility built in thanks to a handy mix of zip-and-link beds.
Lakeview offers four bedrooms that sleep up to 16. Bedroom one provides four three-foot zip-and-link beds that convert into two six-foot beds on request, with en-suite bathroom with bath and separate shower. It’s a similar set-up in bedroom two, plus
bunk beds and an en-suite shower room.
Bedroom 3 is a twin or double bedroom with two three-foot zip-and-link beds that convert to a kingsize on request. You’ll share the family bathroom with bedroom four, with its four three-foot zip-and-link beds that convert to kingsize.
The Paddocks sleeps ten across three bedrooms. En-suite bedroom one sleeps three in a zip-and-link bed and one single, while bedroom two offers a zip-and-link and one single. Bedroom three provides two zip-and-link superkings or four singles. These two bedrooms share the family shower room.