Somerleyton Hall, Suffolk, England, UK
Accommodation Sleeps 16
8 double bedrooms and bathrooms
Fritton Lake on the estate
Close to the coast
The hall, an archetypal Tudor-Jacobean mansion and is owned by the 3rd Lord Somerleyton GCVO but is now lived in by his son Hugh and wife Lara, who have extensively modernised the house and made it fit for 21st century needs.
There is an entrance hall clad in richly carved oak with green-veined Devon marble panels, a ballroom decorated with deep crimson damask wallpaper, a library with a 28 foot high ceiling covered in elaborate plaster motifs and a large dining room hung with family oil paintings.
The luxury bedrooms and bathrooms have been refurbished to a high standard and the house has a friendly atmosphere, despite its grandeur.
The 14 acres of gardens at Somerleyton Hall include a huge walled garden with ornate iron and glass greenhouses designed by Joseph Paxton, the architect of Crystal Palace and a large pergola covered with old wisteria, roses, clematis and vines. Adjacent to this is one of the finest yew hedge mazes in Britain, designed and planted in 1846 by William Nesfield.
There is a collection of some wonderful specimen trees including a Eucalyptus Gunii, monkey puzzle, tulip trees, giant redwood and London Plane. There are extensive lawns, a long driveway and 5,000 acres of farmland and woods.
On the estate, guests can enjoy boat trips on the 2.5 mile long Fritton Lake, picnics in the family's private hut, the nine hole golf course, fishing, riding, hot air ballooning and river boating to the sea via the River Waveney. There is an attractive local village and the Duke's Head pub serves excellent food.
Somerleyton Hall itself is naturally abundant in deer, game and other wildlife like the barn owl, marsh harrier and lapwing.
This country mansion house offers idyllic exclusive use for family parties as well as for corporate get togethers and is ideal for weekend house parties or an important celebration. It was built to impress and it succeeds.