If you’re staying at The Barnhouse and get a little hungry, there are a wealth of options as to how you want to dine. Let’s start with the basic. You might like to put your chef’s hat on and cook for yourself, easy enough, just hit the shops. Better still, ask the concierge to order a Waitrose or Ocado delivery for you. They’ll unpack it too. You could dine out, perhaps at the onsite Elsa’s Café at The Orchard Spa or at one of the traditional Cotswold pubs nearby. But this barn is a beautiful place to be, why dine out when you can bring the good food to you?
The Lakes offer an amazing set of gourmet frozen meals made by COOK, that I defy any of you to try and turn your nose up because it’s frozen. The chicken, ham and leek pie was delicious, this really is fresh and frozen on another level. Not to mention convenient. And, if you’re feeling particularly extravagant, you can hire in a private chef, yours for the evening, washing up included. Our chef, the Michelin-trained Jay Halford, served up an extraordinary three-course dinner, cooked before our very eyes. It was simply luxurious in every single way.
Top tip: don’t miss out on Yoo’s decadent breakfast hampers. They include artisan tea and coffee, premium granola, buttery croissants, fresh eggs and bacon, farm sausages and plenty more.
Relax at the spa
The Orchard Spa, onsite at The Lakes, is perfect for unwinding at your own pace (although, arguably, you could say this about the entire experience). It has a 17-metre heated pool with panoramic views of Clear Water lake, a sauna, steam room and two treatment rooms. There’s a decent gym, with Matrix equipment and a kinesis wall, and an express manicure bar for those times you’re in a hurry to get ready for dinner. Combined with the open plan club room, with pool table and Sky TV, this is city-living 5-star luxury in a peaceful, tranquil setting. No rush, no commuters, no honking black cabs.
Things to do
The Barnhouse comes with two kayaks for you to use on the lakes during the spring and summer (they are closed to preserve wildlife the rest of the year) but there’s so much more. Fancy a bike ride? The Lakes concierge will have a few mountain bikes ready for you. You could take a walk among the estate’s 850-acres of prime Cotswold countryside and discover the veggie patch, the petting hut, the trampoline or the beach along the way. In fact, from sailing to wakeboarding and polo to ballooning, the concierge can arrange practically anything for a small price.
Only 30 minutes from Cheltenham, Stow-on-the-Wold and Bourton, The Lakes by Yoo isn’t too far away from any of the major Cotswold hotspots. Cirencester is 15 minutes away and there are an array of gorgeous little villages nearby too, like Southrop – which hosts one of the best pubs in the Cotswolds, The Swan.
The Lakes by Yoo – Where and How?
The Lakes by Yoo is located near Lechlade, Gloucestershire, Cotswolds GL7 3DT. Lodges start from £1,150 for two nights. The Barnhouse starts from £1,000 a night.