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
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