We were recently invited to go and experience the luxurious Dream Lodges with Dream Lodge holidays for a weekend of relaxation and family fun. These luxury lodges are located across 8 beautiful U.K. sites and are all perfect spots for exploring. They are fantastic bases, with more than a few luxury differences, ideal for making your adventuring memorable.
After doing some research we decided to visit The Sanctuary in Berkshire as it didn’t take me very long to discover that this park was very close to Newbury Racecourse. I thought that a family day at the races would be a fab day for all of us (well, maybe not so much Penny but definitely 3 out of 4)
We arrived at our lodge on the Friday at about 6.00pm… as soon as we walked in we all said how warm it was. Warm and massive! The space within these lodges allowed us to play hide & seek without running out of spots for over 30 minutes. Additional places to hide helps keep the game interesting when you have a toddler whose best attempt is putting her hands over her eyes.
There was a huge kitchen/living/dining space with all the extra touches including a wine fridge, teas, coffees and jams, DVD player and DVD’s, bottle of fizz, luxurious blankets and cushions spread out all over the sofas, board games and big patio doors that led to gigantic decking, an outside bar/seating area & a hot tub that didn’t need heating up, and was ready to go all weekend.
The Sanctuary at Newbury is a brand new park so everything was spotlessly clean, however having read reviews before we set off it’s apparent that brand new or not their standards are very high.
Upon arrival, Ben the lovely warden helped us unload our bags from the cars, talked us through the heating and left us his number just in case there were any issues. There was no big customer service check in, but instead the personal touch (the next day when we went to the races it was raining and I had forgotten my umbrella. I messaged Ben and he very kindly dropped one around within 5 minutes)
The bedrooms were fantastic, ours had a king size bed and opened into the bathroom with a steam shower, jacuzzi bath and under floor heating which left us feeling like we were staying in a 5* hotel, yet with all the comforts of home. We had more storage than we knew what to do with and Bella was delighted with the TV in her bedroom.
All the rooms had TV’s, the two doubles had en-suites and the girl’s room has lovely little reading lights and storage cubbies for them to lay out their treasured possessions found & gathered from exploring the area.
It felt so quiet and peaceful on the site, we could see a few other cars dotted about so we knew other people were staying but the lodges are so private and spaced out from each other it felt like a true little family retreat.
All 8 of their parks are set in areas of outstanding natural beauty and whilst our site itself was still in the final stages of development as soon as we set off to explore we could see how much the area had to offer.
On the Saturday we spent the day at Newbury Racecourse. A £5 taxi ride away from our lodge and a fantastic family day for all of us. Bella absolutely loved the horses, Penny was free to roam and after lunch she visited the on-site nursery for a couple of hours of play whilst we carried on placing our bets.
On Sunday we explored the local pubs enjoying the most delicious Sunday lunch with a few glasses of red and a log burning fire, followed by a run around the park.
On Monday we spent the day at Beale Wildlife Park and gardens which is set in 30 acres and has animals, play, scenery and more than enough fun to keep our mini tribe entertained for the day.
If we would have been staying longer we would have made a trip to Windsor Castle so that the girls could have seen the changing of the guard, or made a visit to Highclere Castle, the set of Downton Abbey, or probably set off for a day trip to London which was only a short drive away. We were spoilt for choice at the Sanctuary with what we could do in the area.
Every evening was finished off with a dip in the hot tub, and for me especially who works from home and enjoys all the usual parenting routines I crave the breaks in routine and the chance to make something special out of the ordinary tasks. Making a fuss of family breakfasts is one of my favourite holiday treats and with all of the facilities and space in our Dream Lodge this was very easy to do.
It was really tough to decide which park to visit (the racecourse swung it for us in the end) but if we were to visit again it would be very hard to choose where to head next.
Lazy Otter meadows in Cambridgeshire looks like an ideal spot for a quintessential English break and with its private fishing ponds on site, numerous water activities nearby, Thetford Forest or Fordham abbey it’s the perfect location for both nature lovers and history buffs.
Or Elmford Country Park, a short distance from Essex ticks all of the boxes for a variety of fun things to do. With spas, restaurants, sailing and golf all nearby it will be very easy to decide how to relax.
If you are looking for a break this year where the accommodation is beautiful, in parks where the locations have been very carefully considered go and check out the Dream Lodge website… you will be spoilt for choice.
Signature Lodge prices at The Sanctuary start from £218.00 per person for a *break, and £337.50 for a week, based on 4 people sharing.
Autograph Lodge prices at The Sanctuary start from £256.60 per person for a *break, and £379.75 for a week, based on 4 people sharing.