As an interiors addict living in new-home chaos, my ideal blow-away-the-Christmas-cobwebs minibreak involves staying somewhere indulgent and well-designed, with home décor ideas for doing up my new pad.
At uber-cool new boutique hotel Artist Residence Oxfordshire, “interior inspo” doesn’t even begin to cover it. This place is a veritable treasure trove of the hottest interior décor the UK has to offer, most of which I want to take home RIGHT NOW.
It’s hardly surprising the place – a 16th century former farmhouse complete with chocolate-box thatched roof – is so picture perfect. Husband-and-wife owners Justin and Charlie have honed their interior design skills by creating rustic-luxe hotels under the same name in Brighton, London and Cornwall, with another scheduled to open in Bristol in 2018.
The Artist Residence name derives from the family B&B on the Brighton sea front, which Justin helped his mother renovate on a budget back in 2006. Taking advantage of his creative surroundings, he invited local artists to decorate the rooms in exchange for board. The idea was a hit: hundreds of artists responded; the hotel was transformed; and the Artist Residence concept was born.
As per the other Residences, the décor of this latest incarnation of the concept revolves around a glorious mash-up of various British contemporary artists. Nestled in the old farmhouse - which as well as its five fabulous bedrooms, is home to Mr Hanbury’s, a proper country pub and gourmet restaurant – you’ll find Andy Doig bespoke neon, a Harland Miller vintage Penguin book cover (please Santa), and Lucy Sparrow’s felt groceries, among many other thought-provoking delights.
The stuff you can eat off, bathe in and walk on is at least equal to the art. My freestanding Catchpole & Rye copper bathtub is a sculptural sensation and ideal for a champagne-drinking session. The chalky grey-and-white striped Bert & May encaustic tiles make a geometric joy of the shower room floor. And the lush House of Hackney dark floral wallpaper in the restaurant sets the scene for the home-grown gastronomic delights that await: local South Leigh lamb for dinner; pancakes with bacon and maple syrup for breakfast; and pea soup, saffron potatoes and sourdough for lunch.
But delicious as it was, for me the food is beside the point, because first and foremost Artist Residence Oxfordshire is a feast for the eyes - and I seriously suggest you indulge them in 2018.
All photos by Paul Massey
With thanks to Artist Residence Oxfordshire for having me as their guest. As always, all opinions are my own. If I don't like something, I won't write about it. Rates start at £130pp for bed and breakfast – to book, visit www.artistresidenceoxford.co.uk.