It was always going to be a special trip. So many things to celebrate. My parents’ 40th anniversary, my birthday (of course), my baby’s birthday, my mum’s birthday, my sister and her boyfriend moving to Australia (OK, not really a cause of celebration, but still something to mark), three generations of family who all get on rather well and actually enjoy spending time together. Luckily for us, the holiday home of One Puddle near Fowey in Cornwall provided the most perfect backdrop for our celebrations. And by perfect, I mean P E R F E C T.
This is the kind of house that Instagram dreams are made of. You walk through the doors and straight onto the pages of an interiors magazine. This is style with a capital S. It was all I could do not to take a photo of everything in sight and put it on Instagram right that very minute.
But first, the outside…
I know, I know. Idyllic, right?
The outside of the house boasts plenty of areas you can get lost in, from benches to enjoy a morning cup of coffee or an evening glass of wine, to an outside dining area, an enclosed grassy garden to play in, a stream, a mini orchard, a hill to run up (and down) and another grassy area overlooking the valley, complete with picnic bench and neighbouring field of cows.
One Puddle is a six bedroom house that sleeps ten people (plus a cot), situated in a little village called Lanlivery near the town of Lostwithiel in Cornwall. It’s about twenty minutes away from the stunning harbour town of Fowey and fifteen minutes from the famous Eden Project. Location-wise, it couldn’t be more perfect.
But it’s not just any holiday home. This place is something else. It’s like staying in a five star hotel, complete with Egyptian cotton sheets and plush towels, but with A-list appliances (waterfall shower, anyone?) and an attention to detail not seen in any other place I’ve ever stayed in.
For a multi-generational group like ours it was spot on: big kitchen, two living rooms (one with a TV, DVD player and plenty of DVDs to get stuck into) conservatory, two bathrooms and various plush bedrooms. There was also a fully functioning laundry and boot room and another bonus room with a desk and day-bed just off the kitchen. In short, there were plenty of places to escape to, should the hectic nature of a busy break away with family get the better of you. There were rooms to congregate and spend time together, and nooks to retreat to if you needed a moment of quiet.
I always think it must be hard for an owner of a holiday home to get the balance right between keeping things neutral and appealing to everyone, without turning the house into a bland space lacking in identity. This place gets that balance down to a tee.
It oozes personality, but in a restrained non “in-your-face” way. There are beautiful prints on the walls, for example, but no family photos. The colour palettes are just the right mixture of bold and mellow. The furniture is thoughtfully chosen and accessorised, effortlessly mixing old with new. This attention to detail and commitment to quality is maintained throughout the house, even through to the laundry room.
So the house looks beautiful. But it works beautifully too. The kitchen boasts stylish subway tiles accessorised with a stunning Art Deco sideboard and vintage antiques and china, but the cupboards are full of top quality John Lewis kitchenware, high end appliance brands and kit that would please any foodie. There’s even a little sewing kit – that’s what I mean by attention to detail.
Style-wise, the house has been thoughtfully and sensitively renovated. Period features remain and are given a new lease of life with clever colour palettes and print. I loved the way each bedroom had its own subtle theme, giving each space a real sense of character. This helps to make the house really feel like a home, instead of just a place to come back to and rest at the end of a busy day exploring Cornwall.
We stayed for four nights at One Puddle. During that time we explored Fowey and the nearby Polkerris Beach (I definitely recommend both), Lostwithiel and The Eden Project for Baby Girl’s birthday. If browsing interesting shops is your bag then you’ll love Fowey and Lostwithiel. Both towns are packed full of stylish boutiques, antique shops and independent stores that you can easily lose yourself in for hours. Of course the surrounding scenery is incredibly picturesque too. Fowey has a beautiful harbour offering plenty of boat ride opportunities, and Polkerris Beach just down the road is in a lovely secluded bay that would probably make a fantastic swimming spot in the summer months.
The trip was just what this slightly frazzled soul needed after an intense few weeks of being back into the school run routine and mum / work juggle. Although it wasn’t long, we all really switched off and relaxed, enjoying each others’ company and soaking up possibly one of the last times we’ll all have together for a while.
Despite appearances from this photo, both girls loved spending time with their aunty too, who they don’t get to see a huge amount of due to work and life commitments.
Before I end up posting an entire essay and breaking the internet with all my photos, I just want to share this video I made of our time in Cornwall.
Our break to One Puddle won’t be forgotten in a hurry.
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