Are you craving a little time away in the countryside? We certainly are!
Europe, with its diverse landscapes and rich history, offers an abundance of vibrant cities and cultural hubs. Yet, hidden away from the bustling urban life, it also boasts some of the most idyllic countryside getaways, where serenity and natural beauty reign supreme. From a hilltop haven nestled in Portugal’s Alentejo countryside, to a Grade II listed villa in the Cotswolds, these rural hotel retreats offer an escape from the daily grind and a chance to immerse yourself in the charm of the European countryside.
Nestled in the captivating Cotswolds countryside, Cowley Manor Experimental is a contemporary country house hotel that blends modern luxury with classic charm. With its 55 acres of rolling parkland, manicured gardens, and serene lakes, this Grade II listed Italianate mansion offers a getaway that is both an escape to nature and an exploration of modernity. Built in 1855, Cowley Manor was once the home of Sir James Horlick, the malted-milk magnate. Now has been carefully restored, preserving its architectural heritage, while the interior spaces have been reimagined with modern and eclectic design elements. From the elegant accommodations featuring bespoke furnishings and original artworks, to exquisite dining in MALT, the award-winning C-Side Spa allows guests to relax with impeccable views of the surrounding countryside. Not to mention the range of treatments here are inspired by nature, using organic and sustainable products. Whether you're seeking a romantic escape, a wellness retreat, or a peaceful countryside getaway, Cowley Manor Experimental provides an idyllic setting and world-class amenities to make your stay a memorable one.
A tranquil retreat amidst Sicilian splendor, Susafa is a hidden oasis just waiting to be discovered. Gracefully perched within olive groves and wheat fields, this ancient stone farmhouse is a sanctuary for those seeking an authentic Sicilian experience – far from the bustling tourist destinations. Take your time and embrace the gentle rhythm of countryside life, as time really does move slowly here. Featuring a large fireplace in the intimate lounge, a breathtaking restaurant set within the old granary of the farm, and a new lagoon-like pool, this is a place like no other. Set in former farmworkers quarters, the seventeen ensuite rooms have been elegantly furnished, without losing the feel of the Sicilian country home; wooden beams, exposed stone walls and terracotta tiles are here tastefully mixed with contemporary furnishings, creating a perfect architectural balance. With all of this and more, Susafa also offer a range of activities and experiences to immerse yourself in Sicilian culture. From cooking classes and wine tastings, to aperitifs in the fields and romantic dinners under the carob tree, there’s something for every traveller’s taste here!
Living in harmony with nature is the driving force behind Paraiso Escondido, an utterly blissful hilltop retreat nestled in the Alentejo countryside. From its architecture perfectly blending in with the surrounding rolling hills, to being as sustainable and eco-conscious as possible, this enchanting part of Portugal is brimming with sun-drenched rolling landscapes, dotted with sleepy villages and olive groves. Formed of five beautiful rooms and two intimate wooden bungalows on stilts, Paraiso Escondido is more than just a place to stay, it’s an immersive experience that captures the very essence of Alentejo’s charm. Relax by the wood burning fireplace, rejuvenate your mind and soul in their yoga studio, dive into their 10-metre pool, and fall in love with the open landscapes and unpolluted starry skies – just like owner’s Berny and Glenn had. For those who are seeking a little more adventure, there are an abundance of magnificent walks through the eucalyptus and cork trees surrounding the retreat. Fancy some clifftop horse riding or maybe even some eco trails canoeing? There’s something for everyone here! Feeling hungry? Vegetarian and vegan cuisine with Ayurveda influences are served here, featuring a ‘farm to table’ concept using only locally sourced produce to reduce their carbon footprint.
If you’re dreaming of an escape to the heart of the French countryside, consider Le Manoir de L'Étang for an extraordinary journey that promises to be both enchanting and rejuvenating. A beautifully restored 19th-century manor house that perfectly embodies the refined elegance of French architecture, this is a sanctuary for those seeking respite from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Set on the hills of Mougins behind Cannes, where Picasso once frequented, the façade, adorned with ivy and creeping vines, hints at the enchanting world that awaits inside - a haven of comfort and sophistication. The guestrooms and suites are thoughtfully designed to provide both modern comfort and a sense of timeless luxury; each with a unique blend of classic French style and contemporary amenities, offering a peaceful retreat from the outside world. Here you have free access to roam the large landscaped gardens, and indulge in the serene beauty of the lake covered with lotus flowers, adding a welcome element of exclusivity. Enjoy seasonal produce paired with local wines, take a dip in the pool and soak up the tranquility of this region. Did we forget to mention that Le Manoir also benefits from 300 days of sunshine a year?!
L’Agnata di De André is more than just a hotel, it’s a symphony of comfort and authenticity, that encapsulates the very soul of Sardinia. Tucked away in the countryside near Tempio Pausania, this is a place that feels like a well-kept secret. The moment you arrive, you are transported to a world of tranquillity and natural beauty that epitomises the essence of this Mediterranean island. This ivy-covered manor house was once the home of the famous Italian singer and poet, Fabrizio De André, and became an inspiration to many of his songs and poems. Now a breathtaking boutique for travellers alike to experience, the stone walls, traditional architecture, and lush gardens create an atmosphere of rustic elegance. Whether you choose a room with a private terrace or one with views of the rolling hills, each of the beautifully appointed rooms and suites boast their own unique character. Wander through the surrounding olive groves, unwind by the pool, enjoy some hearty Sardinian cuisine and be inspired by this corner of paradise. This is the time to reconnect, with yourself and with nature.
As you traverse the enchanting landscapes of Piedmont, you'll find La Villa gracefully perched amidst UNESCO protected vineyards. This exquisite estate is a sanctuary for those seeking a retreat from the mundane, and harmoniously marries the grandeur of classical architecture with modern comforts. Built in 1600, this fifteen-room villa is more of a historical country house than a hotel; the accommodations are an ode to refined Italian style, featuring local antiques, handcrafted furniture and original tiled floors – the overall aesthetic here is totally country-style chic! With its award-winning Le Vie restaurant offering an elegant but relaxed Italian fare that reflects the local countryside, try your hand at some cooking classes where you have the opportunity to make fresh pasta, pizza and more delicious local delicacies. La Villa is a place of pure serenity and provides guests with the perfect home-away-from-home experience. Bask under the sun by their large outdoor pool, enjoy a tipple on their rooftop terrace and wander through their gorgeously-manicured gardens.
Hurley House Hotel is more than a place to rest your head; it's an immersive experience that encapsulates the very essence of English countryside charm. Perfectly located within the quaint village of Hurley, this homely former-pub, now multi-award-winning hotel, is the go-to escape for both foodies and luxury lovers. Guests here can choose from the nine beautifully designed rooms, each offering a unique blend of contemporary design and traditional elegance. Whether you opt for a room with a private patio or one with a freestanding bath, you'll discover a sanctuary where relaxation is paramount. The original flagstone floors and brickwork create the epitome of laidback luxury in the setting of the British countryside. Retreat to the hotel’s Michelin Plated restaurant and be prepared to have your tastebuds taken on a tantalising journey; from a celebration of the best British cuisine to a unique Japanese menu, why not try their new exclusive Omakase dining experience? Not to mention Hurley House hosts live music on selected evenings throughout the week and during Sunday lunch!
Nestled in the picturesque hills of Lazio, Al Piglio welcomes you with open arms to a world of natural beauty and tranquillity. A beautifully restored 17th-century farmhouse, exuding a rustic elegance that blends seamlessly with the countryside landscape, this charming boutique provides a unique opportunity to step back in time and immerse yourself in the beauty of rural italy. Its terracotta façade, wooden beams, and lush gardens create a sense of serenity that envelopes you upon arrival. Formed of just six stunning rooms set among the olive trees and vineyards, the surrounding countryside beckons you to explore. Take leisurely walks through vineyards, olive groves, and chestnut forests. The nearby mediaeval town of Piglio offers a glimpse into local life and history with its charming streets and friendly locals. Relax by the pool, then indulge in a selection of homemade pasta dishes paired with locally sourced wines at the hotel restaurant – every meal here is a celebration of the freshest flavours! This is a place where time slows down, where you can savor every moment, and where the beauty of nature meets the warmth of Italian hospitality. Let the rolling hills of Lazio embrace you, and let the timeless beauty of Al Piglio enchant your senses…
As you wind your way through the picturesque Tuscan countryside, you'll find Villa Gilda nestled amid olive groves and vineyards. This boutique hotel is a sanctuary for those seeking an authentic Tuscan experience and a break from the fast pace of life. Located in the town of Montignoso, this storybook haven of 8,000 sqm of land is decorated with olive groves, citrus trees and graced with mesmerising views of the Apuanian Alps. Villa Gilda was once a private family villa, and is now a hidden gem where traditional Italian hospitality melds with genuine luxury to create a romantic and relaxing experience. Encompassed by a terraced garden blossoming citrus fruits and pretty flowers, a heated pool and sauna, this is a real natural paradise living on the Versilia coast. Ranging from Deluxe, Garden and Superior, to Junior or Family suites, all rooms here come characterised by soft palettes of greys and beiges, with parquet, marble in the bathrooms and a unique design for each suite. A highlight of any stay here is the exceptional culinary experience it provides. Indulge in delectable dishes prepared with locally sourced ingredients, complemented by a well-curated selection of Tuscan wines.
In the heart of the ancient town of Pienza, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, La Bandita Townhouse offers an extraordinary fusion of Tuscan tradition and urban sophistication. This boutique hotel beckons those who seek an escape that combines the charm of the countryside with the vibrancy of a small Italian town. Set against a beautiful hillside backdrop, this former convent is richly designed with the history and heritage of Pienza in mind; combining crisp colours, old and new fusion, wood-beamed ceilings and beautiful exposed stone walls. Each of the twelve thoughtfully appointed guestrooms is a luxuriously humble space, in which to relax, unwind and recharge between your adventures. The intimate in-house restaurant, Townhouse Caffe, is a reflection of the hotel’s commitment to excellence and authenticity. Here you can enjoy delicious dishes that showcase the finest local ingredients, transformed into culinary masterpieces that delight the palate. This paired with an impressive wine list that showcases the region’s renowned vintages, will be a culinary experience to remember.
© 2020 HIP Media Group Limited All Rights Reserved.