Through the keyhole of a period home in Cornwall
PUBLISHED: 14:48 13 April 2018 | UPDATED: 14:59 13 April 2018
In a place of fishing cottages and luxury pads by the sea, it's too easy to forget what the Victorians did for our architecture
Nestled away in 170 acres of glorious countryside, yet within a 10 minute drive from the bustling harbour town of Looe, is the charming country house known as Pendriffey. Thought to have been constructed in the 1850s as part of the Trelawney estate, this is a holiday home that is steeped in history as it was once the centre of a thriving, working farm.
Pendriffey owners, Jerry and Hilary Harris first fell in love with the property for its warmth and character and soon set about a complete and luxurious refurbishment. With all traces of the 1970s avocado bathroom suite long since removed; during the restoration the house revealed secrets of its past which have been carefully incorporated into the stylish and contemporary interior design.
Offering uninterrupted countryside views from every angle, owner Jerry explains that on a good day, you can enjoy views over Looe, Talland Bay and out to sea from the property. This unspoilt section of the Cornish coast is designated as an Area of Outstanding Beauty and a Heritage Coast. In fact, the name Pendriffey means ‘head of the valley’ in Cornish and we couldn’t think of a more appropriate name.
Upon entering Pendriffey you will find yourself in a spacious and welcoming hallway with the original, farmhouse wooden door and Delabole slate flooring which leads to the downstairs bathroom and kitchen. The hand-made, bespoke kitchen with granite worktops provides a large, sociable space where you can linger over family breakfasts and cook-up tasty treats whilst basking in the glow of the beautiful wood-burning stove. ‘A previous owner had covered over much of the original slate floor in here with concrete, so we excavated the floor and it’s now one of the stand-out original features,’ says Jerry. ‘The look that we were trying to achieve was to retain as many of the original features as possible and to re-expose those that had been covered over.’
Through the kitchen is the gorgeous dining room with an extending mango-wood dining table, complete with bench seating and leather chairs. But the refurbishment hasn’t been about ‘out with the old and in with the new’. Wherever possible the owners have refurbished rather than simply replaced. In almost every room throughout the property, including the dining room, Jerry has made a feature of each of the original Victorian fireplaces which adds to the characterful feeling. There’s also a door to the sun room from the dining room, which runs the whole width of the house and offers wonderful countryside views along with a games room for guests to enjoy.
Whilst providing a relaxing space, the family living room is fitted with Smart TV, Netflix and a choice of games consoles ensuring that whatever the weather, everyone will have something to keep them entertained. Every last detail has been chosen with thought and care by Jerry and Hilary to ensure that holiday makers enjoy a truly memorable stay.
Upstairs there are five spacious bedrooms, all of which have been individually furnished to different themes. Jerry explains that the cheerful Moroccan room decorated in warm oranges, yellows and with a hint of red is one of his favourites. During the restoration, Jerry and Hilary gave careful consideration to each of the five bedrooms to ensure visitors wake up to the most spectacular view possible. The rooms upstairs all have original wooden flooring underfoot, with two of them offering ensuite shower rooms.
The main family bathroom provides a splendid free-standing bath which means there is likely to be a queue for those wanting a long, luxurious soak. Jerry is particularly proud that the whole project was carried out using as many local tradesmen and businesses as possible.
What of the outside area? Once overgrown and difficult to access, it now offers a slice of luxurious outside living, with a pretty terrace, outdoor furniture and barbecue area – it’s the ideal spot for al fresco dining. For younger members of the party, there is the chance to pet and feed the neighbours lambs and visit the nearby coastal towns of both Looe and Polperro as well as the secluded twin coves of Talland Bay – the perfect spot for fishing, rock-pooling, swimming and snorkelling. Talland Bay is dog-friendly all year round, making it a great day out for all the family.
Out of a tired and unmodernised house, Jerry and Hilary have created a real home from home, where the interiors have been individually styled and the layout designed to make the most of those views that will keep reminding you how special this house has been throughout history.
Pendriffey is available to book through Cornish Horizons, with prices starting from £1,197 per week. Find out more at cornishhorizons.co.uk
Cornish Horizons is one of Cornwall’s leading accredited agencies representing some of the best holiday cottages throughout Cornwall. Choose from a collection of nearly 700 cottages in popular locations including Looe, Padstow, Fowey, St Ives, Porthleven and Newquay.