By Paul Johnson on Sep 17, 2022 in Accommodation, Europe, Family Travel, Featured, Leisure Travel, Regions, Specialty Travel, UK, Vacation Rentals, Western Europe
Formerly a boutique hotel, the white-painted Chester’s Edgar House is one of the most emblematic residences in the city. Today this Georgian property serves as a luxury holiday home sleeping up to 16 people in sumptuous comfort whilst overlooking the River Dee. Bought by entrepreneur Mark Ellis in 2021, it’s the first in a series of high-end properties that make up Daisy Joy Escapes, with holiday homes in Anglesey and Cumbria to follow soon.
We were warmly welcomed in person – a rarity for self-catering accommodation where nowadays it’s usually self-contained access via a key obtained from a safe – by Caroline, the house manager, who kindly gave us a little tour of the property and explained how various things worked. The welcome packs within Edgar House provide additional information to make the most of your holiday and Caroline assured us that she was only a phone call away should we need anything.
The main entrance to Edgar House takes you to the top floor of this property which can accommodate up to 16 people. On this floor alone, there are five generously proportioned bedrooms, all en suite, and each with its own character. The Horse Room (Bedroom 1), with its subtle horse print wallpaper, and The Zoo Room (Bedroom 2), with its slightly bolder animal print walls, each is inspired by two of Chester’s most famous attractions and has balconies with views of the city wall and River Dee below.
The Aubergine Room (bedroom 3) with its striking aubergine curtains and sofa, the Blue Room (bedroom 4) and the Copper Suite (bedroom 5), with its own living space and eye-catching copper tub set against exposed brickwork, are the rest rooms on this floor.
The main common living space is on the lower level where a snug leads to two further en-suite bedrooms and an open-plan dining room, lounge and kitchen (and a pantry/laundry room just next door).
The Cozy and the Library offer a warm ambience with interiors that blend tradition with bold designs, fun artwork and modern conveniences.
The Roman bedroom (bedroom 6) has a king-size bed and headboard against a feature wall with wallpaper depicting the heads of Roman emperors with mirrored bedside tables and bold lampshades on each side. Pictures of Roman urns on the walls and an antique mirror depicting a Roman goddess, combined with emerald tones, a sofa and a dressing table, complete the look.
The Gray Groom (Bedroom 7), as its name suggests, has gray tones, comfortable chairs and a fireplace.
Each of these bedrooms has its own terrace which leads directly to the backyard.
In addition to being en suite, all rooms have their own television, large mirrors, wardrobe, safe, ironing facilities and hairdryer. They can also all be configured as double or twin rooms.
The bathrooms throughout the property are different but all spacious and luxurious, most with bathtubs and all with rain showers. The hand wash provided comes from Bramley, a small British company with a passion for the countryside, nature and the environment. All of their products are vegan, contain 100% natural botanicals with no harmful chemicals or artificial colors.
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The rest of the middle floor is made up of a large open plan living space, flanked by the kitchen and dining area on either side.
A generous kitchen island takes center stage in the kitchen, topped with an induction hob. Multiple ovens, fridges, freezers and dishwashers mean catering for a large gathering is no problem. In fact, one of the services that can be arranged through the in-house concierge service is a professional chef to prepare menus for your meeting, right here “at home”. Along with all the gadgets you might expect, there’s also a Nespresso coffee machine and milk frother.
A phone booth that houses a Husky refrigerator and shelves for several champagne flutes and ice buckets is a reminder that this special home is the perfect place for a celebration.
The dining room is flooded with natural light streaming through the large Georgian windows and provides the perfect setting for family and friends to dine together.
In the basement of the property is a treasure trove of extras that includes a home theater with surround sound and the neon-lit words “Movie Time” on a wall.
There’s also a games room, with a wall decorated by a local graffiti artist depicting Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and the words ‘Cool Britannia’, providing a fun space to enjoy table football, air hockey and darts, as well as a “jukebox”. ” which can be connected to your phone via Bluetooth.
Outside, against a constant and soothing backdrop of the weir below, there are grassy and paved areas to relax. An al fresco dining area for 16, plus comfortable wicker sun loungers, each with large umbrellas, provide wonderful outdoor social spaces.
There is a garden shed for storing bicycles and for safely storing garden furniture in case of rain. Edgar House is also dog-friendly and set in fully enclosed grounds, and has certainly met with approval from our beloved Springer Spaniel, George.
The back ground of Edgar House leads directly to part of Chester’s city walls which runs alongside the River Dee.
You really couldn’t ask for a better location in Chester, very close to the Roman Gardens, Amphitheatre, Chester Castle and ChesterBoat moorings, and with the bars, restaurants, cafes and shops of all of the city center easily accessible on foot.
Our plan was to go to a fall meeting of Chester Races, also nearby, but unfortunately this had to be canceled out of respect for the recent death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Chester is however a notable racecourse and has held meetings since 1539, meaning it is officially recognized (by Guinness World Records) as the oldest active racecourse in the world.
Nicknamed ‘The Roadee’, this flat course is a very tight circuit, around a mile in length, sandwiched by the River Dee, the city walls and a railway viaduct. It has become the center of the British racing world as well as Cheshire’s social scene, hosting historic races such as the Chester Cup, Chester Vase, Ormonde Stakes, Cheshire Oaks and Dee Stakes.
Other little touches
We were celebrating a family birthday and Caroline had very kindly prepared a chocolate cake to mark the occasion; with her were two bottles of English fizz (Gusbourne Brut Reserve) and a birthday card.
Tea, coffee, bread, milk, butter, farm-pressed apple juice, Cheshire-related Bournes cheese and handmade apple chutney from the Cheshire Chutney Co. were also provided, and the cupboards were already stocked with various oils, vinegars, herbs and condiments. Magazines in the bedrooms and living space included Wallpaper*, Vogue, Tatler, Condé Nast Traveler and Great British Food, in addition to other reading materials, board games and more.
Short breaks (Monday to Friday or Friday to Monday) start from £3,500.
The best piece
The best thing about Edgar House is that it is the perfect property for a multi-generational family reunion, whether it’s a birthday, wedding or other special occasion. Beautifully laid out, and with sophisticated accommodation and plenty of outdoor space, plus a games room and cinema, and Chester within easy reach, means there really is something for everyone.
The final verdict
This city retreat is the perfect setting for a memorable getaway with family and friends. There’s so much to do on the doorstep, but the property itself is so stunning – and finished to such a high standard – that you won’t want to leave.
Disclosure: Our stay was sponsored by Edgar House.
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