Eilean Shona, Scotland
In the 1930s the author of Peter Pan, J M Barrie, spent a summer staying in the historic hunting lodge that forms the centrepiece of Eilean Shona. There is certainly more than a touch of fairytale magic about this idyllic private island in Loch Moidart, just off Scotland’s west coast. There are also seven rental cottages that are scattered around the island, and the latest to have had a revamp is the two-bedroom Old Schoolhouse, tucked into a cove on the island’s remote north shore. The house welcomed its first guests in March and inside it’s a restful mélange of antiques and more exotic finds picked up in Marrakech by one of the island’s owners, Vanessa Branson (sister of Richard).
Acharacle, Argyll, Scotland (01967 431 249; eileanshona.com). One week’s rental of the Old Schoolhouse starts at £1,250, self catering.
The Painswick, Gloucestershire
Painswick is one of The Cotswolds’ classic villages - all mellow stone buildings and oozing chocolate box charm. The Painswick reopened in March following a year-long renewal under the supervision of its new owner, the Calcot Collection, the group behind nearby Calcot Manor and Barnsley House. The 18th-century Palladian-style mansion bills itself more as a restaurant with rooms, yet none of the 16 bedrooms want for comfort, with each one done in a welcoming but unstuffy style.
Kemps Lane, Painswick, Gloucestershire (01452 813 688; thepainswick.co.uk). Doubles from £99, room-only (£194 over the bank holiday).
11 Cadogan Gardens, London
Tucked just off Sloane Street, the just relaunched 11 Cadogan Gardens could not be better placed for a weekend of splurging the stores and boutiques of Knightsbridge and Chelsea. “Classic with a twist” is the phrase that best sums up the clubby-style of the 56 newly renovated rooms and suites, which span four Victorian townhouses originally built by Lord Chelsea in the 19th century. There’s a slinky cocktail bar for post-retail relaxing and as well as a terrace and Italian-inspired restaurant.
11 Cadogan Gardens, London SW3 2RJ (020 7730 7000; 11cadogangardens.com). Doubles from £270 per night, room only.
Cliveden House, Berkshire
If walls could speak, Cliveden House would have some stories to tell. This opulent mansion, built in 1666 by the Duke of Buckingham, is celebrating its 350th anniversary this year and has seen more than its fair share of illustrious visitors, legendary parties and scandal – most notably as the backdrop for the Profumo Affair in the 1960s. The landmark birthday has been marked with a no expense spared restoration of the mansion and other parts of the hotel as well as the recent launch of The Astor Grill – a tribute to one of Cliveden’s renowned occupants, the flamboyant American-born socialite Nancy Astor.
Taplow, Berkshire (01628 607 107; clivedenhouse.co.uk). Doubles from £445 per night, room only.
Mill Cottage, Devon
Wembury Beach is just moments from Mill Cottage, part of an historic mill, which occupies a stunning spot on the Devon coastline gazing out over the sea and the triangular shaped island called The Mewstone. The three-bedroom property is also perfectly placed for ambles along the South West Coast Path, which passes right outside and there’s a National Trust-run café next door.
Mill Cottage, Wembury Beach, Plymouth, Devon (0344 800 2070; nationaltrustholidays.org.uk). One week’s rental from 27 May costs £623 self-catering.