Five years ago, young hotelier Tim Holloway and his wife Edlyn Cunill decided to swap London for the peace and quiet of the New Forest, with happy results for anyone looking for an affordable yet stylish rural bolthole. In the village of Sway, surrounded by open heath and woodland, they found The Manor, built in 1906. With the help of interior designer David Bentheim they’ve given the solid brick house a stunning makeover, its 15 beautifully coloured bedrooms decorated with prints from Audubon’s The Birds of America, an open-plan restaurant and bar and a sitting room that daringly pairs William Morris fruit wallpaper with lime green furnishings and black and white check carpets, to stunning effect. The food, elegant, fresh and seasonal, from a constantly changing menu, is excellent, as are the wines. Best of all, the hotel overlooks five acres of sloping wooded grounds, surveyed from a splendid terrace that’s perfect for outdoor dining.
The nature reserve on the Keyhaven Marshes.
The Manor holds regular supper club events throughout the year designed to celebrate the best food of the season.
The nearby town of Lymington offers a number of independent shops alongside a charming waterfront.