Amberstone Manor, Devon

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The weekend I spent at Amberstone Manor was a bit rogue.

In part because of the spontaneous nature in which me and my friend Hannah ended up there. It wasn’t intended. We were having a night at River Cottage HQ and were asked in a last minute frenzy to join this gathering of bloggers after we were done down on the farm. We also almost didn’t make it. Our trusty steed, Doug the landrover, seemed a bit over our night of West Country adventuring and as we wound down country lane after country lane (past witching hour and with 4% battery on our GPS to go) he slowly puttered to a standstill as we made a left turn.

Until he brilliantly breathed himself back to life, we had resigned ourselves to a shivering night in the rusty wagon by an unattractive, dangerous roadside .

Instead (God love a landy) we arrived at a pretty swish manor house at 1.30am a bit nervous as to what and who we would be waking up to. Fortunately the strangers that filled the house, as well as our brilliant hosts from Olivers Travels, made a weekend intended for wellies and muddy walks end up as a lavish, laughter filled affair. No fear needed.

The house was quite something, thanks to interiors designed by the eccentric artist owner. And it was this creative grandeur that provided the setting for some cracking activities. Top of the list goes to a demo by the brilliant Aimee from Twigg Studios who knocked up a cake for us and styled it to the nines. She even made us feel like we could create something equally brilliant quite easily- though I’m yet to test that theory. As per though it was the outside that took the biscuit. This Olivers Travel pad is Located in Devon, making the views and rolling hills that provided the weekend’s backdrop some of England’s finest, and with an enviable potting house and rope swing to boot, the outside was where it was at.

In fact, the lure of the great outdoors led us to end the weekend in the similarly rogue manner in which it began with a gaggle of us taking to a (very brief) skinny dip in the freezing pool by moonlight. A sure sign that we’d made some mates (and that the gin was on tap).

Thanks Olivers Travels!