If you’ve not heard of Southwold, I feel for you, because it’s the perfect British seaside town. Luckily, it’s not going anywhere, unlike you. Right now you should be packing your bags for a long weekend there.
Located on the Suffolk coast – a two hour drive away from London – Southwold is an ideal size to get to know in a few days, so that’s exactly what my mother and I did in September this year. And, thanks to the team at So Southwold, we had the most wonderful base: Garden Lodge.
Garden Lodge is a three bed cottage tucked away from Southwold High Street. From the outside it’s humble, but inside, rather lavish, not because the decorations are over the top and brash (in fact they’re really homely), it’s more the attention to detail that sets this place apart.
Upon arrival, we were greeted by a spread of goodies. Fresh flowers from the local florist, artisan bread from another local establishment and a whole hamper of Adnams’ products, from gin and tonics to prosecco and red wine. Now that’s what you call a welcome.
Adnams, by the way, is a brand of ale, brewed in Southwold and their presence is very much felt. Most the town’s pubs, hotels, cafes and restaurants are owned by the company and, from our experience, their involvement is a sign of delicious food and wine.
Goodies aside, the cottage is still pretty special. There’s a Sonos surround sound in every room, Dyson hairdryers, a smart TV and L’occitane travel bags filled with fancy toiletries. It’s instantly clear the owners have carefully thought through every detail to ensure you have the best stay possible.
When we arrived at the cottage, we had planned on eating out most evenings, but, given the well-equipped the kitchen, and also the cosy lounge area, (plus tasty alcohol supply), we chose to stay in.
At this point I should say, Southwold has the most delightful selection of delis, serving up fresh salads, homemade pies and a delightful assortment of cured meats and fishes. Go to the Black Olive Deli and I can guarantee that ‘staying in’ won’t be boring.
Much like the living spaces, the bedrooms are also beautifully decorated and have the comfiest beds. After months of siren-filled London nights, it was a total treat to escape to somewhere quiet. The walls are painted calming shades of blue, with gorgeous, marble bedside tables and dainty, red wall lamps.
And if the bedrooms weren’t relaxing enough, the bathroom is the cherry on top. It’s total interior goals and a tile lover’s heaven. Combine the huge bath, the Sonos speakers and a glass of Adnams red and you’re left with the ultimate Sunday night.
Southwold is a town to visit all year round. Our weekend was towards the end of September, so we could soak up the last of the sun, but I can imagine Garden Lodge coming into its own in the thick of winter, when the town twinkles with Christmas lights.
As I mentioned earlier, it’s a three bedroom cottage, which sleeps six, but if you’re seeking a more romantic break, So Southwold offer a sister cottage right next door, which is equally as perfect.
Mole End is a more compact version of Garden Lodge. Equally as stylish in design, it’s just two bedrooms smaller and therefore the ideal setting for couples. Both cottages book up months in advance, so getting in early is key!
For more details of Garden Lodge visit sosouthwold.co.uk