Bill Haslam, Managing Director, Landal Gwel an Mor Resort
I have been fortunate enough, through
work and also personally, to stay in some of the best five star hotels and five
star resorts around the world.
Whether in the luxury accommodation at
the George V in Paris, The Savoy in London, The Lanesborough, The
Dorchester, The Drake in Chicago or Fontainbleu in Miami, or any of the many
new boutique style extravaganzas, such as Hotel Du Vin and Malmaison, that are peppered
around the UK now.
They are all lovely, have polished
staff, great food (normally) and wonderful rooms, as you would expect at this
Star Luxury…but at what cost?
They all have one other thing in common
and that’s the price. Rarely can you
stay in a classy luxury hotel for less than £200 a night and in London or Paris
its £500 plus, while some are a good deal more.
You want to take your family? Then in a five
star luxury hotel it means multiple rooms or a two or even three-bedroom suite.
I have three girls and they seem to always want to take friends on holiday as
A nice lounge area and your own fridge
and drinks area, maybe a balcony and, if you’re really lucky, a lovely view of
But then the price becomes really
serious. In London, this could be £1,000+ per night and even elsewhere in rural
UK you would pay £5,000 to £10,000 a week for one of the best suites in four or
five star hotels.
about 5 Star holidays abroad?
Anywhere nice abroad is no better. The Hotel
IKOS Olivia (a beautiful hotel in Halkidiki in Greece), for a two-bed suite
looking out to sea, wanted £16,000 for a week in July! Lovely place, but you
can buy a new car for that. And that price doesn’t include flights for five
Then there are drinks and food at top hotel
prices, delivered by a smiley servant holding out an expectant hand hoping for
nice tip. With three teenage daughters,
I needed wrist therapy after signing so many dockets for chips, coke, water and
anything else they could order – even stuff they didn’t want!
And travelling anywhere these days is some
form of torture. You can be sat in
traffic in the UK of course, but for me the worst torture is still our national
airports in peak season – or in fact, most of the year.
Airport parking can be as expensive per
night as a cheap hotel room, and then you still have to endure the car park
bus, delivering you to the cattle ranch that is Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted or
Manchester these days.
Rude and pressured staff, sticky waiting
halls, and queues of other sweaty and angry people, crying children and
inebriated stag and hen parties…and our airports are still among the best in
Two-hour queues and rude immigration
staff greet you miserably in most American airports, making you feel like you’re
a close relative of Osama Bin-Laden. The
Middle East immigration staff have learnt all they know from the US as well,
and as for most of the Med airports, ‘manyana’ is the order of the day, and
they couldn’t organise a wine tasting in a vineyard. (Posh version!).
a fresh look at 5 Star holiday parks in the UK
Our UK holiday villages, parks and
resorts (a wide description, I know) represent
top value for money in comparison, and there are some truly amazing places
in superb locations offering great services and activities and even good food
Gwel an Mor in Cornwall offers its new
luxury Residence lodges with three bedrooms, a large lounge area, two bathrooms
(one with a TV!), as well as a large sun balcony and air conditioning (useful
Effectively you have a suite as nice as
many five star hotels around the world, with all that privacy, and all for a
third of the price of a reasonable hotel suite abroad. And all this in a location
in England that’s as stunning as any foreign destination… Cornwall.
There is a pool and spa, a beach nearby,
with most luxury lodges having sea views as well. You can park your car next to
your lodge, eat in the restaurant or get food delivered, get up and go for
breakfast or do it yourself.
And then there are all the activities:
rock climbing, children’s play area, an amazing golf course, fishing, archery,
and a beach you can walk to with surfing, paddle boarding and kayaking …….
OK, if you leave home at the wrong time
you might sit in traffic, but this is a small price to pay in comparison with
all the other advantages! And guess what? You’ve also saved hiring a decent car
at several hundred pounds and arguing about collision damage waivers for the
first thirty minutes when you arrive.
The best British 5 Star Holiday Villages
have changed. They really do offer great accommodation, brilliant service and
so much to do – or you can just hide away and relax in your hot tub.
For me, it has all the advantages of a
lovely five star hotel suite with none of the disadvantages. If you have not
considered this sort of luxury holiday before, then there’s never a better time
to try it, with so many amazing places to stay in the UK.
Staycations are here to stay!