Updated: Feb 2
Beach days and Cornish ways await at this unique luxury holiday home by the sea.
Your journey’s end to Aaloka will see you turn down a farm lane on the edge of Lower Upton, and will be one of discovery and delight. The farm has been in Aaloka’s owner’s possession for generations and is steeped in Cornish history – one of the thatched cottages on the farm dates back over 500 years. This stunning, sleep-ten homestay, which has a countryside outlook, is almost exactly half-way along the canal tow path between the seaside town of Bude and The Weir. From the house, a 15-minute stroll to the west will take you into Bude close to the visitor’s centre and Summerleaze beach; a walk in the opposite direction will bring you out at The Weir café and restaurant, from where there are a host of coastal walks along the South West Coast Path.
The owners paid great attention to detail when having the house designed, working closely with their architects to achieve a property that would be at home in its unique surroundings. “We wanted to build a house that would fit into the Cornish landscape and would be a tasteful addition to Rodds Bridge Farm,” explains Sri Lankan-born owner Monalee. “But through artwork and furnishings, we wanted to make it reflect our Sri Lankan heritage. In addition some of the architecture, such as the whitewashed walls and grey microcement bathrooms reflect a very Sri Lankan style of design.”
The desire was for Monalee, her husband Walter and their two small children to achieve a holiday home where two to three families could have the space and freedom to spend quality time together: “We have a big family that lives all around the UK, not to mention family in Sri Lanka, and so we wanted a space where multiple families could holiday together, without feeling squashed.”
This has been achieved in spades! The open-plan living area is huge, with the dining table and living room comfortably sitting ten. Large sliding doors open out to an expansive terrace, also with ample seating for all. The vast atrium-style ceiling and skywalk that connects the second-floor bedrooms both create a feeling of space. A clever kitchen layout makes for a sociable place to prepare meals while being able to integrate with the rest of the living space. Everything has been thought of to make a multiple family stay that much easier. Twin ovens in the kitchen, two dishwashers, and two washing machines help with the necessities of holidaying with a happy crowd. There’s even a well-stocked library to keep everyone entertained.
The same careful thought has been applied to the sleeping arrangements. The downstairs bedroom is universally accessible. Extra care was taken when designing the bathroom, ensuring that the walk-in shower could accommodate a wheelchair and the toilet has suitable handrails for wheelchair accessibility. Monalee and Walter’s family are still very young and so the children’s bedrooms have had special attention. Two rooms, that are mirror images of each other, house triple bunks and each has a ladder leading up to a mezzanine area with a built-in hammock. Once up in these eyries, tall windows afford fabulous countryside views. Childhood delights don’t stop here; from the terrace, little ones can ride the slide down into the garden where they’ll have fun bouncing on the trampoline or firing up their imagination in the playhouse.
The master bedroom is simply stunning, with two vast skylights. You’ll find the same in the en-suite, so you can stargaze from the comfort of bed or bath. Relaxation doesn’t stop there – a steam room in the master bathroom is the perfect antidote to a cool evening at the beach or after a dip in Bude’s sea pool. The attic room belies its name as it’s far more sumptuous and spacious than semantics suggest. A unique skylight, which opens out as a small balcony, gives views over the canal and Bude beyond – the perfect place to escape for a moment of peace over a pre-dinner drink.
Attention to detail is evident at every turn at Aaloka, both outside and in. Ample private parking means that’s one less thing to worry about, as is a lockable lean-to on the side of the property with plenty of space for bikes, surf boards and beach kit. This area of Cornwall is perfect for exploring at any time of the year and in all weathers, so the outdoor shower means that mud and sand stays where it should be…outside!
Aaloka is the definition of eclectic escapism and offers a place to gather for a holiday that will never be forgotten.