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Last Minute Half Term Cottages

Sunday, May 22nd, 2016
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Half term is just around the corner and with the summer weather finally making an appearance, it’s the perfect time to book a cottage getaway. Here at Sykes Cottages we still have a fantastic range of holiday rentals available for the half term, so to help whet your appetite for a family getaway, we’ve listed just a few of the stunning properties still available for next week below.

Five Bells Cottage, Ref. 929287

Shorwell, South of England

Five Bells Cottage, Ref. 929287, in Shorwell.

Five Bells Cottage, Ref. 929287, in Shorwell.

Located in the picturesque rural village of Shorwell on the Isle of Wight, this charming holiday cottage is perfect for a week by the sea. The property’s quality interiors and stylish décor offer a much needed break from everyday life, and with the local amenities right on your doorstep, there’s no need to take the car out every day.

A weeks stay at Five Bells Cottage from Friday May 27th (2016) will cost you a total of £939.

The Coach House, Ref. 923082

Middleton Hall near Belford, Northumbria

The Coash House, Ref. 923082, in Middleton.

The Coach House, Ref. 923082, in Middleton.

Sleeping up to ten people, this large, stylish property is perfect for larger families or friends sharing. At The Coach House you can spend your days exploring the nearby woodland walks and boating lake, before heading back to the cottage for a home cooked meal around the large dining table and an evening of fun in the games room.

The Coach House is available for a mid-week break, from Monday May 30th (2016) for four nights, at a total cost of £1466.

Golden Slack Cottage, Ref. 18506

Wincle near Macclesfield, Peak District

Golden Slack Cottage, Ref. 18506, in Wincle.

Golden Slack Cottage, Ref. 18506, in Wincle.

If you’re a family who love to be outdoors then Golden Slack Cottage’s scenic location on a working livestock farm could be just what the doctor ordered. Not only does this property have a welcome interior but the surrounding area is perfect for walking, cycling and exploring the Peak District’s wonderful array of wildlife.

You can book a week’s stay at Golden Slack Cottage from Saturday May 18th (2016) for a total cost of £788.

7 Mariners Point, Ref. 935729

Hartlepool, North York Moors and Coast

7 Mariners Point, Ref. 935729, in Hartlepool.

7 Mariners Point, Ref. 935729, in Hartlepool.

With breath-taking, panoramic views of the harbour, 7 Mariners Point offers the perfect coastal getaway for a family of four this half term. Visitors to this holiday cottage can really make the most of their time at the seaside by taking the short trip to the RSPB reserve at Saltholme Park, where they can see watch grey seals play in the water.

7 Mariners Point is available for a seven night stay from Friday May 27th (2016) for a total cost of £524.

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By Nicole Westley

As a food lover Nicole can often be found in the kitchen, covered in flour and experimenting with new tastes! When not making a mess she loves to explore her Celtic roots by roaming the Scottish countryside or exploring the bays along the Anglesey coast with her fiancé.

Making Your Cottage Guests Feel Welcome

Thursday, May 5th, 2016
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First impressions count and here at Sykes Cottages, we want to help you make the best first impression possible when new customers arrive at your holiday let. From a friendly welcome to a cup of tea, we’ve listed some basics below that are sure to make your guest feel welcome on arrival.

A warm welcome awaits guests at Springle Barn (Ref. 5469) in Monyash

A warm welcome awaits guests at Springle Barn (Ref. 5469) in Monyash

Provide a warm welcome

If you’re around to greet your guests in person then this is a great opportunity to make them feel welcome – a smile and friendly handshake can go a long way! If you’re not able to greet your guests in person then never underestimate the power of a handwritten note. Providing a small handwritten welcome in your cottage is a lovely touch and lets your guests know that you care about their stay.

Introduce the property

Make sure your guests get the most from their stay by providing them with a little back ground information on the property, how long you’ve had it and its best features – this works especially well if your holiday let is older or has an interesting history. The property’s introduction can be done in person when your guests arrive or as part of your welcome pack in the cottage.

Welcome basket at Yate Cottage (Ref. 913883) in Oxenhope

Welcome basket at Yate Cottage (Ref. 913883) in Oxenhope

Stock up on the basics

An easy way to make your guests feel welcome is to provide a few basics like tea bags, milk and sugar so your guests can have a nice cup of tea after their journey. Cooking essentials like salt, pepper and cooking oil are common items you’d find in your own home but may forget to take to a holiday let, so don’t forget to provide these for your guests. These homely touches will go a long way in making your guests feel comfortable.

Little extras

As well as the basics, you may want to look at included some little extras to make your guests feel special on arrival. A bunch of fresh flowers in the property or a nice cake can really impress your visitors and encourage them to share their experience at your cottage with others, increasing word of mouth and encouraging new potential customers.

A little dog made feel very welcome at Greenway (Ref. 930748) in Kilve.

A little dog made feel very welcome at Greenway (Ref. 930748) in Kilve.

Consider the whole party

Children and pets can often be overlooked as we try to please the adults, but taking the time to point out any child friendly attractions or good dog walking routes can really help your guests feel welcome. For an extra special touch, try leaving out some games for children or a dog toy ready for your guests’ arrival.

A guide to the local area

Providing your guests with expert knowledge of the area like where to eat and local days out will let your guests know that you care about their stay. Try to including include this information in your welcome pack or let your visitors know that they can contact you for advice on places to visit and restaurants to eat at during their stay. Make sure to avoid telling your guests what they can’t do in the area and focus on the things they can do.

And there you have it, our guide to making your guests feel welcome. Have you tried any of these tips? If so did they work? Let us know by leaving a comment on our Facebook or Twitter page.

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nicole.westley

By Nicole Westley

As a food lover Nicole can often be found in the kitchen, covered in flour and experimenting with new tastes! When not making a mess she loves to explore her Celtic roots by roaming the Scottish countryside or exploring the bays along the Anglesey coast with her fiancé.

5 Things to Love about the Peak District

Sunday, May 1st, 2016
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If your idea of a dream getaway is to a destination rich in natural beauty, heritage and attractions, then look no further than the Peak District. The area’s spectacular moors, dales, rivers and springs have been attracting visitors for years and make the region ideal for a UK getaway. There are a million reasons to love the Peak District but to help you get a better feel for the area, we’ve listed our five favourite reasons to love the Peaks below. Take a look and see if we can convince you to visit the Peak District this year.

1. Historic Houses and Castles

From Chatsworth House to Bolsover Castle, the Peak District has its fair share of historic houses and castles to explore. These grand attractions are perfect for groups of all ages and with an exciting calendar of events at each location, you won’t be short of things to see and do.

2. Cycling

The Peak District’s easy going bike trails make for an idyllic day out amongst the English countryside. This is a fantastic way to discover more of the Peaks and to keep the children active, and for those of us that don’t fancy travelling with our bikes, the Peak District has a number of hire shops available where you can rent a bike for the day.

3. Journey Back in Time

Experience the Peak District’s rich history by taking a trip on one of the region’s period steam trains or trams. The Crich Tramway Village is a great place to start your journey, here you can take a trip on one of the many vintage trams and enjoy a light lunch in the tearooms as you enjoy breath-taking views.

4.Walking

With its romantic landscape,uncluttered trails and far reaching views, it’s no wonder the Peak District is one of the UK’s favourite walking destinations. There are plenty of walks to choose from but for the more experienced walkers, we would highly suggest taking on the Limestone Way; at 46 miles long this route is not for the faint-hearted!

5. Caves and Caverns

The Peak District offers a huge variety of underground attractions to explore, with luminous caverns, deep caves and exciting underground boat trips. These caves and caverns are perfect for a day out at any time of year and provide the perfect rainy day activity for families looking to escape the weather.

So what do you think? If you’re ready to book your Peak District getaway then make sure to check out our Peak District Cottages page. With over 500 properties located throughout the Peaks, we’re sure to have something to suit your holiday needs. Visit our website or give our team a call on 01244 356695 to find out more!

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nicole.westley

By Nicole Westley

As a food lover Nicole can often be found in the kitchen, covered in flour and experimenting with new tastes! When not making a mess she loves to explore her Celtic roots by roaming the Scottish countryside or exploring the bays along the Anglesey coast with her fiancé.

Walk of the Month: Box Hill Stepping Stones

Sunday, April 24th, 2016
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It’s time for another instalment of Walk of the Month and for April’s edition, we’ve decided to feature a family friendly walk which makes the most of the warmer weather and extra hours of sunlight. The Box Hill Stepping Stones walk can be found in Tadworth and has the most wonderful views of the Surrey Hills.

This walk is great for active families who enjoy nature; the route is even dog friendly meaning you don’t have to leave the family pet behind. During this walk you and your family will be treated to amazing views of the Surrey countryside as well as glimpses of the area’s local wildlife. Be sure to keep an eye out for Adonis Blue butterflies and Bee Orchids hiding amongst the grass and if you’re quiet, you may even spot a kingfisher down by the River Mole!

The walk

This month’s route is two miles long and takes around an hour and half to complete, although please allow extra time if you plan on stopping off for a picnic. The route covers a moderate terrain but please be mindful that there is a steep descent with 275 steps and a long ascent to consider. Dogs are welcome on this route but must be kept on a lead due to grazing livestock. The visitor centre stocks drinks and snacks and is a great place to stop off before starting your walk. If you plan on arriving by car, then the car park has a small fee of £4, but it is free for National Trust members.

The route

Start your journey from the National Trust visitor centre, next to the car park. From here follow the surfaced pathway which runs parallel to the road (make sure to avoid the track going off to the right). You’ll soon see the fantastic view of the Surrey Hills opening out in front of you from Salomon’s Memorial. Stop here to admire the view or enjoy a tasty family picnic before continuing on the walk.

From Salomon’s Memorial, continue your walk down the sloped path under the viewpoint. Take a right and continue along this path until you see some steps cut into the ground on your left. Follow these steps down hill and through the Yew Woods, there are a total of 275 steps here so make sure to take care as they can sometimes be slippery.

Once you reach the bottom of the steps, continue along the path making sure to keep an eye out on your left for glimpses of the River Mole. When the path starts to flatten out you’ll come to a fork in the path, take the route to the left, the one with the sign for the Stepping Stones. You will now see the River Mole and the Stepping Stones in front of you.

From here you can either continue across the Stepping Stones before turning right and following the river, or take a right at the river’s edge and follow the path, crossing at the bridge a little further along. Once you’ve reached the bridge, continue through the gate which brings you out into a large open space called Burford Meadow.

Continue through Burford Meadow until you reach the road bridge. Just to the left of the bridge there is a path leading upwards, follow this path until you come out on the pavement next to the A24. Turn right here and cross the river. Continue along the pavement, passing a hotel on your right hand side.

Take the path on your right which comes up immediately after the Hotel. Follow this path until you reach a fork, take the left path and continue along the grassy track heading uphill. When you reach the ridge of the hill, join the wide grassy path and continue uphill as the path becomes a white chalk path.

You will soon see a pathway on your left, follow this path until it joins a stony path and the take a right continuing uphill. You’ll soon pass a building on your right; this is Box Hill Fort and one of the oldest buildings in the area. Take your time to explore the Fort before continuing up the stony track and turning right at the road to reach the visitor centre.

To view the route map please click here.

Rent a cottage in the Tadworth area with Sykes Cottages

Mannor house surrounded by greenery and flowers.

Hoath House (Ref. 22743) will accommodate up to 26 people and is located just 29 miles from Box Hill.

Here at Sykes Cottages we have a lovely selection of holiday lets available within a 30 mile radius of Tadworth, any of which would be perfect for day trips to Box Hill. Our cottages come in all shapes and sizes and there is even a property large enough to accommodate a party of 26! With plenty of extras including swimming pools, open fires, gardens and WiFi, we’re sure to have a property in this selection to suit your holiday requirements. To see our full range of cottages in the Tadworth area please click here, alternatively please feel free to give our team a call on 01244 356695 for more information.

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nicole.westley

By Nicole Westley

As a food lover Nicole can often be found in the kitchen, covered in flour and experimenting with new tastes! When not making a mess she loves to explore her Celtic roots by roaming the Scottish countryside or exploring the bays along the Anglesey coast with her fiancé.

Check Out Our New Let Your Cottage Page

Wednesday, April 13th, 2016
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Over the past few weeks we’ve been working hard to improve our Let Your Cottage page and we are pleased to say it’s now ready to explore! With its snazzy new look, our Let Your Cottage page is dedicated to providing holiday cottage owners with the information they need to successfully let their property.

LYC Main

On the new home page, owners will find all the information they need about letting your property with Sykes Cottages; from our marketing strategy right down to the people you’ll be working with. The new website even has a handy estimator so you can see how much you could earn when letting your property with Sykes.

Everything you need to know about holiday lettings

LYC Info

As well as a new look, the website has also been packed full of useful information! You’ll find advice on a variety of holiday letting topics including investment advice, legal regulations, advertising and marketing, and even tax information! We’ve made it so that everything you need to know about holiday lettings can now be found in one easily accessible place.

Expert advice on your local area

LYC Region

Own a holiday let in the South West? How about a Peak District cottage? Wherever your property is located, Sykes Cottages will have a local expert on hand to offer you advice. By visiting your region-specific pages, you can get to know the Sykes Expert in your area and take a look at some of our existing properties nearby. These pages also provide another opportunity to use our estimator and find out how much you could earn with Sykes based on historical booking data.

We hope you enjoy exploring our new Let Your Cottage page and if you have any questions regarding holiday lets in the UK then please feel free to give our team a call on 01244 356695.

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nicole.westley

By Nicole Westley

As a food lover Nicole can often be found in the kitchen, covered in flour and experimenting with new tastes! When not making a mess she loves to explore her Celtic roots by roaming the Scottish countryside or exploring the bays along the Anglesey coast with her fiancé.