Cornwall Tourism Awards 2011; we’re winners!

Here at Gwel an Mor we’re proud to announce that we’ve scooped gold in the “Holiday Park and Holiday Village of the Year” category at the 2011 Cornwall Tourism Awards. If that wasn’t enough our exceptional team has been given a special award – “Outstanding Customer Service” – thanks to way we look after our guests.

The 10th annual Cornwall Tourism Awards, organised by VisitCornwall, was held at St Mellion International Resort on 10th November and celebrated the best that the county has to offer when it comes to making people’s holidays special. The bar gets raised very year in terms of the standard of entrants, which is great for the Cornish economy and if we’re winning awards shows our commitment to excellence.

Malcolm Bell, Head of Tourism, explained:  “In this year’s Cornwall Tourism Awards I don’t believe the judging could have been any tougher. When I was first involved in tourism 20 or so years ago the decisions were relatively easy and we were often deciding between good and mediocre.  Now we are judging degrees of excellence, sometimes with very small or negligible differences between the entries – hence you’ll see this year that we have awarded several joint awards.  Gold, silver and bronze winners alike should be immensely proud.”

As winners we will now go on to represent the county in the South West Regional Awards and ultimately the National Excellence Awards which take place next year, fingers crossed!

For further information and a full list of winners please visit www.cornwalltourismawards.com

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Choose a Holiday in Cornwall this Christmas

When most of us think of Cornwall we think of the summer, hitting the beach to top up the tan or brave the county’s famous surf. Cornwall isn’t just a sunshine destination however, there’s loads to do when the nights draw in, making it the perfect location to stay during the festive season.

  • Mousehole Lights: Mousehole is one of Cornwall’s prettiest harbours and at Christmas its’ lit up by sea creatures and festive favourites, with old fashioned lanterns adorning the villages lanes and harbour walls. The lights will be officially switched on, on 17th December. http://www.mouseholelights.org.uk/
  • Feadon farm: Our very own British wildlife sanctuary complete with tame foxes who made the news thanks to their endearing relationship with the farm’s pet dogs, birds of prey, reptiles, lots of cute furry things and nature walks, designed to introduce the whole family to Cornwall’s native wildlife.  http://www.feadonfarmwildlife.co.uk/
  • Gwel an Mor’s Christmas festival: At Gwel an Mor’s first Christmas Festival, visitors will have a chance to meet Father Christmas and resident reindeer, Nadelik and Lowen. Taking place from the 10th – 11th December, the festival is set in our magical woodland complete with a barn filled with real life nativity animals. http://www.gwelanmor.com/
  • Ice skating in Eden: The Eden project, home to Cornwall’s instantly recognisable biospheres, gets all winter wonderland from the 22nd October to 23rd December with its very own ice rink. This year, Eden is offering ice skating lessons for all the family; from on-ice games for children as young as six to Superskate sessions for experienced skaters. http://www.edenproject.com/come-and-visit/whats-on/ice-skating.php
  • Lappa Valley Steam Railway: Running on one of the oldest railway track beds in Cornwall, the Lappa Valley Steam Railway consists of three miniature railways running through a conservation area, perfect for children and train enthusiasts alike. At Christmas, the railway plays host to Father Christmas with train rides to his grotto and mulled wine for the adults. http://www.lappavalley.co.uk/pdf/christmas_leaflet.pdf
  • Serious surfing: While most associate the beach with the summer, serious surfers hit the coast in the winter when the waves are bigger and the tourists have gone home. Head to north Cornwall for the best surf. The Surf Academy in St Ives boasts a 92% stand up rate, with world class teachers and lessons for all abilities. http://www.surfacademy.co.uk/index.asp
  • Winter walks: The Cornish coast takes on a whole new energy in winter months with brooding sky’s and waves crashing against the shore. Away from the coast, Bodmin Moor provides plenty of wild walks for the avid rambler, complete with the chance of seeing its famous beast. A guide to the best walks in the county can be found on the Visit Cornwall website. http://www.visitcornwall.com/things-to-do/activities/walking-in-cornwall
  • Christmas at The Residence: Luxury lodges complete with wood burning stoves make The Residence a seriously cosy destination when the nights draw in. Available to buy under shared ownership, residents at The Residence will enjoy Christmases to remember with a delicious festive feast at its on-site restaurant, The Terrace and a visit from Father Christmas complete with real life Reindeer.   http://www.ecoholidaylodges.com/
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Want to own a holiday home in Cornwall? Share in our paradise

You’ve spent a lovely summer in our beautiful county; wouldn’t it be nice to have a piece of it for yourself? Holiday homes for sale in Cornwall are often expensive – a big outlay for somewhere that, realistically, you may only spend a few weeks of the year in.

We have the answer at The Residence, Gwel an Mor’s very own holiday lodge complex, boasting luxury accommodation sold in a way that makes five star living affordable. The Residence’s eco lodges are sold in shares so ownership is divided amongst a number of individuals.

Though popular in the States, shared ownership is a relatively new concept in the UK and gets unfairly perceived as a timeshare. Accommodation in Cornwall such as this is unique and out of the financial reach of most people and if it was a timeshare, involved parties would only have right of use to a property over a specified and clearly defined period of time.

Shared ownership means buying a proportion of the freehold so investing in something which you actually own and can sell-on or leave as inheritance to family members or friends. As a freehold there is no time limitation so this little slice of luxury can be yours to keep forever. Plus, unlike a timeshare, owners will have access to the complex at any time subject to availability. There are obviously more popular times so we have guaranteed certain weeks during the most desirable dates of the year which are rotated annually amongst owners.

Holiday lodges, such as The Residence, just aren’t for sale in Cornwall – it’s not only the property you to buy in to, but all the trappings that Gwel an Mor has to offer. As a resident at The Residence, you will get to use all Gwel an Mor’s excellent facilities – swimming pool, spa, Feadon Farm and The Terrace Restaurant; we really are providing an opportunity to share in our paradise!
http://www.ecoholidaylodges.com/

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Relaxation top priority during your UK Short Break?

Plan to stay UK? Short break experiences can be different for everyone, recognising that we all want that certain something from our time away…

This week the key word is relaxation, and a mini break can be the best way to achieving it.

For some, after a busy stressful week at work, its pure relaxation that’s important.  Unplugging the phone line,  ignoring the door bell and playing hibernation in the house is all very good in theory but we all know to well it never works out quite as planned. A mini break away however will really hit the spot.

In my opinion Cornwall’s pace can not fail to relax you from the moment you step foot in the county…making it the perfect place to spend a UK short break of this nature. A few suggestions may also help to find the way to pure relaxation Cornwall style…

A quiet swim with views of countryside, a delicious traditional cream tea in the afternoon, perhaps a spot of fishing on the coast, some pampering with a hot stone massage, a glass of wine on the balcony with views of the Atlantic, watching the last of the surfers at Godrevy beach as the sun begins to set, being wined and dined at Jamie Oliver’s fifteen restaurant or an evening star watching from the comfort of your own jacuzzi…

Feel more relaxed already…?

View our short breaks.

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Half Term Horror! House of bored kids?! How do I avoid it this October Half Term? Cornwall has the answer…


Yes that’s right, it feels like the kids have only just gone back to school after the Summer and already you can hear that repetitive dreaded line drumming in your head…‘Muuuuuuuum I’m bored’ as another half term break fast approaches in October. Half term in Cornwall however is so packed with events and entertainment that an October half term holiday in Cornwall means you will be waving bye bye to bored faces the second you arrive (sorry we can’t guarantee it for the car journey down here!)

Don’t forget it’s your half term break in Cornwall too (break being the operative word) so our advice to you is to let someone else do the entertaining for you, here is an extensive list we have carefully put together so you can do just that.

Halloween is of course the main event and there are loads of spooky things to do in honour if it. From ghost walks to pumpkin carving, scary garden trails to a Halloween ball…here are a few of our favourites to ensure both you and your little monsters enjoy this October half term stay in Cornwall.

Spooky Garden Trail, Children’s Crafts & Pumpkins & Ghouls at Lanhydrock
Halloween Trail at Cardinham Woods
Halloweden & Little Monsters Ball at the Eden Project
Spooky Trail at Pendennis Castle
Halloween Children’s Fun Day at Trevarno

Halloween in the Jungle at Paradise Park

There is still the rest of the week to think of, so check out our School Holiday Events page & www.dayoutwiththekids.com

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Christmas in Cornwall, why I love it…

 

It’s that time of year already, when thoughts turn to the festive season, and in particular how we plan to spend our well earned holidays and time off work. It is becoming increasingly popular for families and friends to book to go away for their Christmas breaks. In Cornwall we see visitor numbers rise year on year. So why is it people are opting to pack their bags in December…?

Is it to escape the Christmas ‘mania’, to avoid having to rush around different houses visiting family or simply to get out of cooking the yuletide lunch! Perhaps…but here in Cornwall we feel there’s a little more to it than that. There is a genuine sentiment that visitors can’t help but absorb during this time of year in this beautiful county, drawing them to spend their New Years breaks in Cornwall and Xmas breaks in Cornwall for no other reason, than to enjoy all the charm it has to offer.

From storm lashed beaches under dramatic coastlines perfect for that boxing day walk and enchanting woodland surroundings which are even more picturesque in the winter months to illuminating Christmas light displays, the sound of children’s carol singing, late night Christmas shopping in the city of Truro, ice skating at the magical Eden project and countless traditional local festivities…all of this and more creates the spirit of Christmas for all to enjoy during their Xmas break in Cornwall.

What is it is that would make your Christmas break in Cornwall 2011 so special…? We would love to know.

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Slowing down in September, Holiday Breaks in Cornwall

Fewer cars on those country roads, easier to get to those ‘must see’ places in Cornwall, no queues at the ice cream van, quieter beaches, less seagulls and generally a much slower pace, surely that makes the obvious time for that long awaited short break in Cornwall, September.

During this month the county has seen some of its best year’s weather in Cornwall, September forecasts can be found here.  With wind speeds picking up slightly too, the surf is usually at its best and the water is still at a good temperature.

September holidays in Cornwall can be spent enjoying the array of local festivals such as…
The Newquay Fish Festival
The St Ives September Festival
The Cornwall Food & Drink Festival
The Bude Jazz Festival
Festival of Play at the Eden Project
The Proms at the Minack theatre are also showing during this month, certainly one not to be missed!

Of course another bonus to taking your holiday during this time is the out of season September holiday offers in Cornwall.  Check out our special September short break offer.

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Eco-Holiday Elegance, Cornwall Style…

As people become more aware of the fragility of the planet, eco-tourism has become increasingly important and quiet rightly so. Protecting and preserving the environment in which we live in is essential to the future of our world when at home and on holiday.

Can eco-friendly holidays be compatible with the luxury that would be expected from a 5* Cornish resort however…? We strongly believe they make the perfect match and there is no sacrifice of either in our new Residence retreats…

As an expansion of Gwel an Mor, The Residence is a new development of designer eco holiday homes in Cornwall, situated on an idyllic stretch of coastline overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, these eco holiday homes prove that luxury and sustainability really can go hand in hand…

Each retreat at The Residence is designed to a beautiful, contemporary finish and offers endless indulgences for its residents, from outdoor hot tubs to spacious, open-plan living based on sustainable principles…

Eco-Friendly-evidence…

• The Residence retreats will receive a Code 4 rating, meaning that with regards to energy consumption; they are 44% more efficient than the 2006 Building Research Establishment recommendations.

• Some of the eco-credentials that contribute to this code 4 rating include…

• Air to air and air to water heat pumps, these provide an ideal efficient heating system in which outside air heat source is applied to heating home floors and water. The system means luxurious under-floor heating and air-cooling systems are included for all-year round temperature and comfort.

• The economical and ecological system not only lowers energy costs and CO2 emissions, but also provides various combinations of air and water solutions for heating and cooling that meet different user needs during the four Holiday seasons.

• The eco holiday homes are finished in ‘ThermoWood’ which not only blends beautifully into the landscaped surroundings it also has many environmental benefits…no chemicals are used in the production of the timber, just heat and steam making the timber bio-degradable, and because it is extra durable, it has a long service life, which means fewer trees need to be felled.

We are passionate about conserving natural areas, especially in this beautiful part of Cornwall where wildlife really thrives. That is why we have increasingly invested in our non-profit Feadon Farm Wildlife Centre, a neighbour of The Residence club, where extensive conservation work is carried out and provides a home to many rescued British animals that couldn’t otherwise live in the wild.

Eco-Friendly-ethos…

We realise that one of the main reasons people come on holiday to Cornwall is to enjoy its environment-both natural and built. We believe it is our responsibility to protect and preserve it now and for the future without impinging the holiday experience. Which is why we are committed to responsible and sustainable environmental management and have chosen this particular design for our new Residence retreats. With green views and green credentials a holiday home at The Residence creates the perfect green holiday…just as it should be.

The Residence properties are now available to purchase through shared ownership and are configured in 2 and 3 bedroom layouts. Give us a call to arrange a viewing or visit www.gwelanmorresidence.com

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Luxury accommodation in Cornwall, hot tubs, log burners…what are your expectations?

chocolates on pillowsLuxury, it’s that little 6 letter word that can mean so many different things to so many different people.

The Oxford dictionary describes the term using words such as indulgence, elegance, comfort or desirable. But what does it mean in terms of luxury accommodation in Cornwall?

From lodges with hot tubs in Cornwall, spotlessly clean and beautifully furnished accommodation, 5 *concierge service, a relaxing hot stone massage,  to a simple chocolate on the fresh crisp white pillow, what is considered as luxury is certainly something that can be personal to you.

One popular addition to a holiday which is deemed as the ‘ultimate luxury’ by many globe trotters is self catering accommodation with a private hot tub.

According to a survey hot tubs are on the top 10 list of most searched for holiday home facilities.  So what is it about these bubbling baths that is so sought after and deemed as luxurious by so many…?  Perhaps it’s the feeling of soaking yourself in open air bliss, lying back and enjoying a soothing massage from the jets, this water therapy is proven to promote the release of endorphins; a natural product that your body produces and it is considered a “happy drug”. This experience of a little pampering after a tiring day of biking, sightseeing or swimming is certainly something that fits well with a Cornish holiday.

It’s not just us humans who love them, nicknamed the snow monkey, these cheeky-looking Japanese macaques live a chilly existence in Yamanouchi, Japan.  They like nothing better than keeping warm in steaming-hot pools, I just love this video of them.

Luxury lodges in Cornwall with hot tubs is certainly something that we have covered here at Gwel an Mor, but you will be thankful to hear there are no monkeys in our ones!

We would love to hear what you love about hot tubs and what ‘luxury’ means to you, comments most welcome…

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One of those hidden gems in Cornwall

Nestled under rugged coastline, this small secluded sandy beach on the North coast of Cornwall boasts natural beauty, it’s one of those secret spots in Cornwall that never fails to impress.

Once at the edge of the cliff peer down and prepare to be taken back by the splendour that lies before you.  After the initial pathway fades, it is a fair tricky trek down to this secret cove so care must be taken, although a rope half way down does lend a helping hand.

As this place is so secluded, very few are aware of it, for this reason the first time you go, as I did, you might feel like an intruder discovering a hidden island (especially if there are folk already down there). However this just adds to the experience and if respected this spot will welcome you back time and time again.

The day can swiftly pass in a number of ways here by enjoying a snorkel around the rocks, reading a book in the afternoon sun, having a surf if the tide is right, or simply just by lapping up the feeling of exclusivity that this spot offers you

Of course it goes without saying, a picnic must be packed if it’s a full day your planning on, as thankfully a bustling beach café can not be found here for miles!

Even if you feel the ramble down is too much, you need not miss out. The astounding view of this secret spot in Cornwall means it can still be appreciated from above. Just a few steps down presents you with a flattened area amongst the grassy knolls, perfect to layout that picnic blanket out on and take it all in.

The thing I love the most about this place is its sheer modesty; it’s in no tourist guides or on any postcards, it’s not commercialised in the slightest and its infamous innate presence makes it all the more appealing.

From the old piece of weathered rope that someone once thoughtfully placed half way down the cliff, offering assistance to those select few, to the seldom swum inviting sea, this spot truly is a small slice of paradise.

Known to us as ‘the secret spot’ this place, I am sure will be enjoyed by my family generation for many years to come, perhaps it can be too by yours.

We think it’s these secret places in Cornwall, these hidden gems in Cornwall, these effortlessly stunning places in Cornwall that really make it a truly beautiful county.

Where is special to you and your family in Cornwall? We would love to hear about it – and if you’re luck I may just tell you where my hidden gem is…

Other “Hidden” Cornwall Gems

  • Golitha Falls
  • Luxulyan valley
  • Polridmouth Beach
  • Chapel Porth Beach
  • Zennor Church
  • Caerhays Castle
  • The Hurlers

 

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