If you’re looking for somewhere to stay with the family on the Isle of Wight, here’s a selection that offer lots more than just somewhere to sleep. Check out our top five self-catering options…
The West Bay Club offers family accommodation in New England style cottages set in 28 acres of landscaped grounds. Guests have free access to a 20 metre heated indoor pool, three Astro-turf tennis courts, three squash and badminton courts, an aerobics studio specialising in Yoga and Pilates and an ESPA Spa that includes both a sauna and steam room.
Deep in the countryside and nestling beneath the downs in the converted barns of the Garlic Farm are Mersley Farm cottages. On a working farm growing garlic and asparagus, the Garlic Farm Shop in the farm yard sells their garlic products, plus a range of Island products, while the Garlic Farm Cafe offers fantastic breakfasts and lunches every day. Take a tractor ride round the farm with the kids and learn all about the history of the area and all things garlicky in the Heritage Centre.
At the Priory Bay Hotel families have the option of staying in self-catering accommodation set with the the 60 acre estate complete with its own beach, 6 hole golf course and outdoor pool. There are several modern cottages and each of these has a double bedroom, second childrens’ bedroom, lounge, bathroom and small kitchen. There are also two older stone buildings: the converted coach house that has room for ten or Cluniac cottage, which can cater for up to eight.
The Seaview Hotel is a family hotel but it does also have a fully modernised fisherman’s cottage, Myrtle Cottage that is suitable for a family of four. Use of the Isle of Wight Sports Club is available to those staying at the Seaview or Myrtle Cottage and it has a new 16m x 8m indoor heated swimming pool, a floodlit tennis court with new ‘Olympus’ synthetic grass surface, a badminton court with new Maple sprung floor and two refurbished squash courts. There is also a new air-conditioned gymnasium with the latest PowerSport equipment and both sauna and steam rooms.
Farringford House, the former home of Poet Laureate Lord Alfred Tennyson, is currently closed to the public for restoration but there are several self-catering cottages in the extensive grounds. Alfred Cottages were designed by the famous architect and visionary, Clough Williams-Ellis, who built Portmerion, and have vaulted ceilings and stone fireplaces with log burning stoves, or you can opt for the more modern Emily Cottages. Within the grounds there is a Par 3 nine-hole golf course, outdoor heated swimming pool and children’s pool, a hard tennis court and children’s play area.