Invitations to a house party

Perhaps it is time to get away from it all - with your friends and family


If recent celebrations have not been quite as memorable as you would like, perhaps it is time to get away from it all — with all your friends and family. To see in the New Year in style, or to mark a milestone birthday or event, the answer may be one of the growing number of UK cottages catering for larger groups. Bookings of properties with 11 bedrooms or more have almost trebled since 2014, according to Sykes Holiday Cottages. And big does not mean anonymous. You will find everything from history to hot tubs. We looked at five distinctive places to stay, all with space for ten or more.


Llanfendigaid Estate, Gwynedd, Wales

This Grade II listed estate is on the Welsh coastline, within Snowdonia National Park. It has been owned by the same family since records began back in 1241 and the main house on the estate was built before the 13th century.This house sleeps 17 and there are three more characterful buildings, so you can accommodate 31 across the eight-acre estate. There is access to one of the area’s most secluded beaches and an indoor heated swimming pool for when the weather is uncooperative.

Surrounded by antiques and family portraits, not to mention items collected on the family’s travels around the world, you will feel like lord or lady of the manor.

Three nights costs from £1,594 with Premier Cottages.


Finchcocks Oast, Kent

Can’t decide between a quirky converted property or somewhere with chic designer style? This former oast house in Kent ticks both boxes. On two floors, with designer lighting in the high ceilings, exposed beams and modern furniture, the property has a tennis court and heated swimming pool (open in summer only). It is only an hour from London too.

The whole property sleeps 42, with an additional sofa or day beds in the en-suite bedrooms.

This is part of Mulberry Cottages’ Celebration Houses collection and you can jazz up your break even further by adding something from the company’s Extras & Experiences service, which offers bespoke catering, a hot tub, cocktail making, babysitters and photographers.

Prices are from £2,888.


The Super Yacht, London

A venue with a difference, the Super Yacht, moored in London’s Canary Wharf, can sleep ten but has room for you to entertain 50 an extra guests on board.

With five bedrooms and bathrooms, plus sun balconies, rooftop terraces and a lounge, there is no shortage of spots in which to linger over a glass of champagne — and the boat has its own bar.

Enjoy the views from the saloon’s big windows, or listen to your favourite music — the boat is wired for Bose sound and vision.

The yacht comes with its own crew, whose quarters have a second kitchen where they can prepare your meals if you wish; there is also an option to arrange outside catering.

One night costs from £2,395. Book with The Big Domain.


The Powerhouse, North Yorkshire

Five minutes away from the beach, in the village of Skinningrove, not far from Whitby, this former Victorian powerhouse has been transformed into a quirkily grand weekend escape with space for up to 17.

There are four-poster beds in two of the six bedrooms, a central staircase that practically begs you to make a grand entrance and a galleried landing with a leaded glass dome and plenty of other eye-catching details, such as a porthole window looking on to the sea, a rolltop slipper bath and a cast-iron fireplace.

There are two separate kitchens. One dining table conceals a snooker table and there is ample room to spread out, across two sitting rooms, a courtyard and summerhouse with hot tub and sauna.

One night costs from £132, minimum stay three nights. Book with One Off Places


Knowehead Bothy, Aberdeenshire, Scotland

Just outside the village of Insch, you have golf and skiing on the doorstep, as well as the Cairngorm mountains and city of Aberdeen — if you can tear yourself away from this lovely cottage in the Scottish countryside.

In winter, gather cosily around woodburners in the old stone bothy. There is underfloor heating, a hot tub and a shower which can double as a steam room.

And at any time of year, there are spectacular views, especially from the super-king-size bed in the master bedroom, with its floor-to-ceiling picture windows, one of five bedrooms, sleeping ten in all. There are four bathrooms, two en-suite, so it is perfect for a group getaway.

Three nights costs from £776. Book with Sykes Holiday Cottages


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