Classic cottage charm and architect-designed luxury at two memorable Cotswold properties
On the eastern fringe of the Cotswolds, just outside the miniscule (and picture-perfect) village of Lechlade, sits Lakes by Yoo. The private estate covers 850 acres and is centred around the eponymous freshwater lakes, which sit among verdant woodland criss-crossed with winding trails. Strung among the trees and along the water’s edge are dozens of private homes, many of which are available as holiday lets (and some to purchase, if you’re feeling flush). Barnhouse is the flagship rental property.
With interiors designed by none other than Kate Moss, Barnhouse epitomises refined glamour – and gives those of us who have never experienced global superstardom an insight into the tastes of a certain kind of music- and art-loving celeb. Sensual textures rub up against quirky accessories and objets d’art, while furnishings are at once palatially plush and characterfully unique. Colour abounds, and the overall effect is of artful maximalism rather than anything zen or minimal. And yet everything coheres beautifully, lending the house a pleasing versatility: it’s at once a cosy family hideaway and a rock ‘n’ roll party pad. And with four double bedrooms, en suite bathrooms, a first-floor terrace, heated outdoor pool and additional mezzanine master bedroom overlooking the open-plan living area (whew!), there’s room to spare no matter how big your tribe.
The private, heated outdoor swimming pool is enough to set Barnhouse apart from a great many of its competitors, but stray into the wider estate and you’ll find even more to keep you (and your family) occupied. The lakes themselves are great for sailing, swimming, angling or watersports enthusiasts, while the on-site Kids Club offers everything from science workshops and bushcraft to pizza-making. Speaking of pizza, if you get peckish there’s Elsa’s – an on-site street-food van and yurt offering impeccable and on-trend brunches, lunches and dinners. And when you fancy putting your feet up, visit the Orchard Spa: a serene, purpose-built complex featuring an indoor swimming pool, world-class treatments and organic products courtesy of local brand Bamford.
The Wider Area
Lechlade is very happily situated for visitors – especially those from London, who get to experience the best of Cotswolds life without venturing too deep into the countryside with a car full of restless kids. A short drive brings you to picturesque Cotswolds countryside, the Cotswolds Wildlife Park and Gardens and the justly celebrated Daylesford Organic Farm, with its beautiful shop and restaurant. Exploring the more immediate periphery of the estate reveals sleepy villages, fields of flowers and wooded walks to soothe the spirit (and keep the kids amused). Arcadia indeed.