Travel • February 10, 2015

Ivywood Cottage, Harleston, Norfolk.

A couple of weeks ago we discovered the most beautiful little hidden gem.  In fact it was so beautiful, that I almost feel like I don’t want to share it because I want to keep it all to myself.

Last week I posted about our short break in Norfolk.  It was a little bit of a spur of the moment trip, we decided to book it last minute.  We had a lovely time, but one of the things that made the trip for us was the place we stayed in- so much so I wanted to write a post solely about it because it was just so great.

I randomly found Ivywood Cottage, a little white bricked home in a quiet rural area, just by chance when looking on Airbnb for accomodation in Norfolk.  We didn’t have a particular area in mind, we just wanted to be in Norfolk or Suffolk as they are only an hour or so’s drive from where we live.  On finding the cottage details, I immediately decided to book it as looking at the photos it looked just my kind of style.

On arrival at the cottage we were absolutely blown away by the inside.  Basically it was my dream home in terms of interior styling- with a very industrial yet feminine feel, lots of exposed beams, retro touches and rustic accessories.  Every inch of it is thought through and decorated immecably-  I took a million photos as I didn’t want to miss a drop but I don’t even think my photos do it justice.

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You walk into the cottage and are greeted with the kitchen and dining area, with it’s fantastic breakfast bar- I obviously love the metro tiles (I have some in my bathroom!) but I also loved the industrial style lighting.

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I wish I could have a pair of these in my home- don’t think it would work in a modern detached house though!

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We loved the little touches- like a homemade cake sat waiting for us.

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The other side of the room was the dining area and in the morning it gave the most lovely natural light.  We sat and ate chocolate croissants together while chatting about our plans for the day.

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There were lots of fresh, wild flowers all over the place.

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The bathroom was downstairs, just off the kitchen area.  Again I loved the mixture of interior styling- lots of industrial, quirky touches.  And the wood floor was gorgeous.  We had a bath each evening, which was just so relaxing.

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You walked through a door to a cute, cosy little living room.  I loved the whitewashed floor.

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We loved the snuggly blankets that were there for us to cosy up under in the evening- we played a riveting game of Scrabble while cuddling up together.

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Love the retro style table!

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After going up a creaky, wobbly staircase you get to an upstairs landing area which can either be used as a little lounge or a third bedroom- this is where LL slept. (Ivywood Cottage provide a travel cot if requested)  It’s little touches like this cute car on top of one of the beams that really make the place special.

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The master bedroom has a little tiny ensuite hidden within the wall and lots of natural light.

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Each room is beautifully designed with so many little touches that make it a delight to look around.

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Across the other side of the landing is another guest bedroom, this one slightly more retro in style.  Mads loved having a double bed all to herself but it would be great to go with another couple if you wanted to leave the little people at home.

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Serious radio lust- I love it!

Ivywood Cottage is owned by Gem and Ed, and their attention to detail in designing the place really is second to none- it’s one of the nicest cottages we have stayed in the UK.  The price is pretty reasonable as well, considering the standard of the place, it’s a flat £95 a night every day of the year with a little bit extra for a service charge and cleaning charge added on top.  In terms of taking children, while the cottage had a few child friendly touches- like kids books and a travel cot, I wouldn’t say it was massively marketed at children.  But that’s the beauty of the place- you would enjoy it whether you went for a family weekend, a romantic break away for two, or a fun time with friends.  Our girl’s aren’t massively into exploring or touching things around the home- I think if you had a little explorer then it might not be the place for you.  But for children who aren’t as inquisitive, (they are all different) older children or non mobile babies, then Ivywood Cottage would be perfect.

The cottage is in a great location- completely rural but with the picturesque towns of Bungay and Harleston just a few miles drive.  The coastal town of Southwold is about half an hour and Norwich is about forty minutes, so it’s perfect for exploring.  Were there any negative points?  Not really, it really was a great weekend break.  The only thing I would say is that when we went it was absolutely freezing outside and we couldn’t really manage to get the heating to make the lounge cosy.  We were nice and toasty in the night, but the downstairs stayed quite chilly.  It did give us an excuse to snuggle up under a blanket together.  Other than that, we really loved it, plus Gemma the owner seemed really nice and helpful too. (They live in the big house next door)  We would definitely recommend it to anyone- it was such a lovely weekend and we will definitely go back.

NB:  We paid in full for our stay at Ivywood Cottage- I just wanted to share the details as it really is a stunning place to stay.


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