Charming hotels in pretty suburban towns for quality accommodation seeking vacations
he pandemic has seen homebuyers reassess their homeownership wishlists and the rise of the TW * T – based on offices on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays – has added a few notches to the traditional suburban belt as people extend their hunting at home.
With a larger field, it can be difficult to know where to start your search, especially if you are considering new areas, but the agents and home buyers who have made it out to the other side agree that time and time again. The energy you invest in your research does. pay at the end.
A good tip for convincing agents that you are a serious prospect for a sale is to take a few days in the middle of the week to stay and explore the area instead of competing for limited appointments on a Saturday afternoon, explains Louis. Harding, Head of Residential Sales in London at Strutt & Parker.
“By relying on Saturday visits, we will not necessarily always meet the real estate agent who knows the client best,” he explains.
“It’s so important to leave London for a more suburban or rural area, it would be silly not to give it the time it takes.”
With the summer vacation coming to an end, there’s no better time to combine your home search with a stay and experience what your potential new neighborhood looks like on a weeknight, too.
Average price of a house: £ 391,004
Kent’s sandy beaches, high schools and pretty towns are attracting TW * T commuters who previously considered the coast too remote for daily work, before Covid. Train journeys from this part of Kent tend to take between 90 minutes and two hours to St Pancras.
Broadstairs and Margate are popular with stylish creatives and young families looking for coastal living near London when needed. Londoners have followed a regular trail to Margate in recent years, which has seen the town dubbed Shoreditch-on-Sea.
One of those London graduates is digital editor Natalie Wall (@talliwall). She bought a four bedroom Victorian house in Broadstairs with her boyfriend after five years of intermittent housing search around Margate, Broadstairs and Ramsgate.
“Every time we took a beach break in Thanet, which we did about two to three times a year, we would organize at least one day of sightseeing in the area we were staying and we would start to get a feel for where we were. I like to live rather than the place to have a good night out, “she says.” We’ve stayed in lots of different places, from Airbnb apartments right by the beach to townhouses and hotels.
“We have probably visited about 40 properties in total over the five years we were looking. We have had offers accepted on three properties over the years, but all have failed due to issues on the seller’s side.
Natalie stayed at The Well residence in Margate when she found her new home. “It’s located in a semi-detached townhouse with a focus on the feeling of well-being – ‘fill the well,’ says Wall. We felt so relaxed during our time there last summer, surrounded by crystals and the like, it is surely no coincidence that we manifested our dream home in lives during our stay! ” Rooms cost £ 255 a night.
“We also stayed at Belvedere Place, a stunning Grade II listed Georgian townhouse in Broadstairs. It was making a dark, moody setting long before it became an Instagram trend. We had plenty of local advice from the then owner, who I believe had moved from London herself, which certainly opened our eyes to the possibility of doing the same. Rooms cost £ 380 for two nights (minimum stay).
“We saw a lovely townhouse in Ramsgate that we were about to bid on, but something was wrong. We ended up returning to the streets several times during that same trip and found the neighbors and the surrounding area to be quite… busy, to say the least! Which obviously might have suited some people, but was a red flag for us. “
Wall is now planning the renovation of his dream home from his one-bedroom apartment 160 km from Pinner, north-west London.
Average price of a house: £ 618,884
Picturesque market towns such as Dorking, Reigate and Haslemere. Guildford and Godalming, both located on the River Wey, have the added benefit of living by the water. Main Street in Epsom was reporting even before the pandemic, but the great pubs and walks in the Downs attract a lot.
Journeys to central London take around an hour, although there are some (inevitably expensive) options around the 45 minute mark.
The Denbies Vineyard Hotel in Dorking is one of the few days of exploration, with rooms starting at around £ 150 on the 265-acre wine estate in the rolling Surrey Hills.
The Beaverbrook country hotel is the flagship option. Set in 470 acres, with just 18 rooms costing from £ 570 per night, this is the height of luxury – a 10-minute cab ride from Leatherhead Station, which offers 45-minute train journeys to Waterloo .
The hotel has interiors by Susie Atkinson, who has also worked on Soho House properties, so Londoners considering a move to the Surrey Hills will feel right at home in the grand Victorian mansion that once belonged to the Baron of the press and politician Lord Beaverbrook. The hotel’s Japanese grill is run by original sushi expert Wojciech Popow Yashin and Noma.
For those who don’t mind country house room rates, Headley Houses are a must-see. There is currently an eight bedroom mansion for sale for £ 3.25million in this upscale neighborhood. It’s also well located for exploring Reigate and under the radar options such as Tadworth and Walton-on-the-Hill.
Average price of a house: £ 426,667
Pretty Rye, just above Camber Sands, and the market towns of Wadhurst and Ditchling, tap into cravings for homemade chocolate. Londoners who don’t want to completely lose their edge might consider the booming seaside town of Eastbourne.
With trains taking just over an hour on average, East Sussex offers London leavers a spectacular choice of countryside or coastline, from quaint villages to trendy towns.
Capitalizing on the London exodus, the newly opened Port Hotel in Eastbourne seeks to reinvent the traditional seaside hotel for creative visitors. Standing out from its neighbors with its black east London seafront façade, whose locals joke to show off seagull droppings, the hotel offers 19 rooms on the Royal Parade.
Even better for those planning a move, Port sources many of its sleek furniture and artwork locally – and lists vendors and prices in an informative visitor’s guide. Food and wine are also brought within a 30 mile radius of the hotel when possible – enjoy Sussex sparkles, cold cuts and fish on the seaside patio if the weather permits. For house hunting, Rye is nearby and Lewes is a half hour drive away.
Owner Peter Cadwallader believes Eastbourne is set to be the next Margate with a vibrant arts scene and relatively affordable accommodation tempting more and more Londoners away from the capital. There are plans to open more branches in booming seaside towns in the near future.
Rooms at the Port Hotel cost from £ 140 for bed and breakfast.
Average price of a house: £ 352,794
Oxfordshire is the classic Cotswold county for London commuters, and Rightmove’s searches for properties in the Cotswold village of Chadlington increased 511% after Clarkson’s Farm launched on Amazon Prime.
New age commuters can look further into Gloucestershire. The market town of Cirencester saw a 161% increase in rental searches, while the Georgian spa town of Cheltenham offers plenty of entertainment for former Londoners.
Trains from London to the bohemian epicenter of Stroud take an hour and a half from Paddington. The surrounding glamorous villages are home to celebrities such as Jamie Dornan and Queen of the Cotswolds, Jilly Cooper.
House hunters can stay at Painswick, a 16-room hotel set in the archetypal Cotswold village of the same name. Think roaring fires, comfy sofas, and fine dining to prepare for a day of sightseeing.
Rooms from £ 194 per night, bed and breakfast.