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Wednesday 19 October 2011

Sluttery Travels: The Enchanted Manor, Niton, Isle of Wight

Myself and my rather dashing other half were recently invited over to the Isle of Wight for a little jolly jaunt. I can only imagine that the gods very much wanted us to enjoy ourselves, as we were blessed with the most spectacular autumn weather; bright, bright sunshine and not a hint of wind. Utterly glorious, and enjoy ourselves we very much did.

Sian and I had been talking about where best to lay our heads whilst myself and the Mister were on the island when we stumbled across what is, very possibly, the most intensely glitzy and borderline bizarrely ostentatious website for a bed and breakfast we think we've ever seen. We HAD to go.

The Enchanted Manor is, as the name suggests, a manor house in the sleepy village of Niton on the Southern edge of the Isle of Wight. And, when they say enchanted, they MEAN IT.

We're talking fairies. A shed load of them. There's barely a surface, floor space or blade of grass that is not home to a small/large/wooden/ceramic/cuddly/scary/cute/weird fairy-type statue. Inspired by the unusual work of fantasy artist Josephine Wall; the manor made me actually laugh out loud when we pulled into the driveway. But, you know something, weirdly, it works.

Owners Maggie and Ric have been at the manor for five years, and have spend that half-decade putting their very unique "stamp" all over it. Whilst fairies have never been my thing (far from it), Ric and Maggie's infectious charisma and charm swept me up, and I couldn't help but be captivated by the whole thing.

The Enchanted Manor is every bit as flamboyant and grandiose as a Disney theme hotel (albeit with a significantly smaller budget); of particular note is the miniature fairy town at the front of the building, the Chinese gazebos out back, the impressively large woodland area and the Wedding Room. A fairy wedding overseen by toy badgers? Why the hell not.

We stayed in the Dreamtime room and it was, like the rest of the manor, absolutely spotless. Ric and Maggie go in for pine four-poster beds and freestanding roll top baths in a big way; so that's what you can expect in every room. When Ric and Maggie got hold of the place they set about halving the number of bedrooms. Madness? Not at all. Each room is now an impressive spacious suite featuring lounge, bathroom and large bedroom. These rooms are designed for people staying at least three nights; so you can really begin to feel at home (if the headless life-size fairies in the corner don't creep you out too much).

I wasn't sure I'd like the Enchanted Manor. But I really, honestly did. It's immaculate; the breakfast was utterly stellar (home made salmon fishcakes and hollandaise sauce? Suits me sir!) and the owners are a blooming delight. Whilst it may not be to everyone's taste, I can genuinely think of worse places to be, and I'd happily return to visit Ric, Maggie and their 7,956,876 fairies (approx.).

Breaks at The Enchanted Manor start from £120 pppn (minimum 3 nights). We travelled to the island courtesy of Red Funnel ferries. Our visit was complimentary but this has in no way affected our review.


  1. Wasn't this on the Channel 4 programme, Three in a Bed? I feel very mean as the owners did seem lovely but aesthetically it's pretty dreadful. Sorry.

  2. It actually won the Three in a Bed programme. The owners are indeed lovely, but it's an acquired taste for sure.


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