Lake­side lux­ury at Frit­ton Lake on the Somer­ley­ton Es­tate

Emma Lee dis­cov­ers a wood­land re­treat on the Suf­folk/ Nor­folk bor­der per­fect for ac­tive au­tumn short breaks

Essex Life - - INSIDE -

In East Anglia you don’t have to travel far to find ad­ven­ture. Frit­ton Lake, part of the Somer­ley­ton Es­tate on the Nor­folk/Suf­folk bor­der, is be­ing devel­oped into a pri­vate hol­i­day re­sort. An on­go­ing project by cur­rent own­ers Lord and Lady Somer­ley­ton, the coun­try­side around Frit­ton Lake, for­merly a coun­try park open to the pub­lic, is cur­rently un­der­go­ing rewil­d­ing, which means that the land is be­ing re­stored to its nat­u­ral, un­cul­ti­vated state.

The base for our Fri­day to Sun­day break was one of the Hill Wood re­treats – 35 be­spoke lodges, nes­tled in oak wood­land fac­ing south and east across the lake, a bike ride away from the re­sort’s main hub. Other ac­com­mo­da­tion op­tions in the re­sort in­clude rooms at the Frit­ton Arms pub, more re­treats clus­tered in the gar­dens of the for­mer Frit­ton Hall and, com­ing soon, their ‘cool cab­ins’, the Shed Rooms, which aren’t avail­able to book as yet, but prom­ise a concierge ser­vice.

On ar­rival we stopped off at the Frit­ton Arms to pick up our keys and we ar­rived at our re­treat to find the wood-fired hot tub be­ing pre­pared ready for us.

The lodge, with its in­dus­trial-meets-rus­tic decor, was straight out of a glossy in­te­ri­ors magazine, com­plete with beau­ti­ful In­sta­grammable cop­per fix­tures and fit­tings and lux­u­ri­ous faux fur throws.

Great for group trips, the open-plan kitchen/din­ing/liv­ing area cre­ated a lovely space for so­cial­is­ing and opened out on to the deck and hot tub, with a panoramic view of the two-mile long lake. It was so se­cluded, the only soundtrack was bird­song.

The lodges are self-cater­ing, but for one lunch time we ate out at the Frit­ton Arms. As you’d ex­pect, lo­cal, sea­sonal pro­duce, some of it from the es­tate, is the star turn here. I could have hap­pily spent all week­end laz­ing around at the lodge, but there were acres of na­ture re­serve to ex­plore, wildlife to spot and plenty of ac­tiv­i­ties on of­fer – from open wa­ter swim­ming to standup pad­dle­board­ing, plus hik­ing, pony rides and trails to ex­plore by bike, which are avail­able to hire. Ven­tur­ing fur­ther afield, South­wold, Great Yar­mouth and the Broads are a short drive away.

Ac­tiv­i­ties are on of­fer un­til Oc­to­ber (they start up again in April), so the re­sort would make a great des­ti­na­tion for an early au­tumn get­away – no pass­port re­quired!

Find out more

A range of week­end and longer Frit­ton Lake Re­treat breaks are avail­able dur­ing the au­tumn. Open week­ends, for any­one in­ter­ested in own­ing a re­treat, are be­ing held on Septem­ber 29 to 30 and Oc­to­ber 27 to 28, from 9am to 4pm. For de­tails visit somer­ley­ton.co.uk/frit­ton-lake

ABOVE:One of the lodges at the Hill Wood Re­treat

RIGHT:In­side the lounge of one of the Shed Rooms. Im­ages cour­tesy of Nick Lane Mar­ket­ing

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