Holidays: Expert on possibility of travel for vaccinated Brits
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From here, the loch and the Cuillin Mountains sit before you. Behind the doors of this majestic property you’ll find contemporary, yet hugely relaxing surroundings with subtle colour palettes, wooden floors and wood burning stoves. It has 34 superb rooms with thick carpets to sink your feet into, Nespresso machines, Highland Soap smellies and Bose sound systems. Beds are dressed luxuriously with 300 thread count, 100% linen. Dining is exceptional at the Chargrill restaurant. As the name suggests, its speciality is steak and seafood. Nearby the Aros Centre charts Skye’s history and the pretty harbour is a hive of activity with fishing trawlers landing their catch and pleasure boats picking up visitors.
- Doubles from £299 per night, B&B. perlehotels.com
Feel the ghosts of sleuths past at this magnificent hotel. Burgh Island just off the coast of Devon is an Art Deco masterpiece. Shaped like a giant white ship, it sits proudly on its own little tidal island reached by sea-tractor at low tide. Since 1929, Burgh Island has been welcoming famous and infamous guests who relive the glory days of the glamorous 1930s. 25 rooms are a nod to some of its favourite guests such as Agatha Christie and Noel Coward.
Art Deco features remain – from the old Bakelite phones to lovely wall lamps; curved bedheads and club chairs. In the bar, is a collection of vintage cocktail shakers.
Best of all, Black Tie and Evening Dress are required for dining in the Grand Ballroom where you’ll dine on superb food. More relaxed alternatives include The Nettlefold for fabulous seafood and views and cocktails and cream teas in The Palm Court, crowned by a glass dome roof. By night it becomes a 1930s cocktail bar which has hosted the likes of Sir Winston Churchill and Wallis Simpson (not together!).
There are fishing trips, island walks and a natural seawater bathing pool.
- Doubles from £515, Dinner B&B. burghisland.com
ISLE OF WIGHT
Long-term favourite the Isle of Wight ticks all the boxes for a classic seaside holiday. Base yourself in Yarmouth at The George Hotel and Beach Club – a grand Victorian pile right on the waterfront.
This lovely re-purposed 17th century townhouse has gorgeous individual rooms with fabulous portraits, thick printed curtains and massive beds.
The grand entrance hall has a sweeping wooden staircase. Food is served in the brasserie which sits in the conservatory. Gaze out over the Solent as you dine on fabulous locally sourced dishes such as fish pie and rib-eye steak.
The chalky Needles are nearby, as is the Newtown Nature Reserve.
- Doubles from £245 per night, B&B. thegeorge.co.uk
Jersey may feel like it belongs in another era, yet that’s what makes the Channel Island so enchanting. The minute you arrive, an overwhelming sense of calm descends. Particularly at Longueville Manor, St Helier, a superbly restored Jersey manor house which has been in operation since 1949.
Each of the 30 individually-decorated rooms overlook the grounds. Longueville has an incredible wine cellar with 5,000 bottles in temperature and humidity controlled rooms.
A relaxing lounge with massive fireplace and oversized sofas is the place for pre-dinner cocktails, or if the weather’s fine, kick off the evening around the outdoor pool. Dinner is a culinary journey and showcases Jersey’s finest produce under the guidance of Andrew Baird.
It is served in the atmospheric 15th century Oak Room with its historic oak panelling, or the adjoining Garden Room. Of course, let’s not forget Jersey’s incredible beaches, imposing castles and fascinating war tunnels.
- Doubles from £350 per night, B&B. longueville manor.com
ISLES OF SCILLY
These dramatic rugged islands are for those who want to convene with nature. The 25-room Hell Bay Hotel sits in a little secluded bay facing the Atlantic Ocean on Bryher island’s western edge. Rooms have their own balconies and feature nautical and summer tones such as sherbet lemon and pale blue, with big windows overlooking the ocean.
The relaxed beach house vibe extends to the communal areas, where rattan furniture and colourful, locally-produced artworks are nice touches.
The restaurant has three AA Rosettes and there’s also the more relaxed Crab Shack.
Be pampered in the Treatment Shed, stretch out in the yoga studio or dive into the heated pool. Outside, there are rocky coves galore, empty sandy beaches and granite hills. Pick up local produce from tiny stalls dotted along the tracks.
- Doubles from £110, per night B&B. hellbay.co.uk
If total seclusion is what you crave, you can’t beat Eilean Shona which sits in tidal Loch Moidart. The whole island is part-owned by Richard Branson’s sister, Vanessa Branson.
The main house is a grand Scottish manor where nine individually furnished bedrooms sleep up to 12.
The drawing room comes complete with grand piano and is adorned with works from international artists. Outside, exploring can be done by rib boat, kayak or on foot. Your in-house chef is exceptional and meals are served at a massive table which seats up to 20.
Five nights house rental from £1,700pp, all inclusive.
Alternatively, book into one of the nine cottages. Kitchens are well-equipped and outside there’s a fire pit. You reach Eilean Shona by ferry and are escorted to your cottage while your luggage comes separately.
- From £950 per week, sleeps two.
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