large family villa rental

The History and Rebirth of Aynhoe Park

The view of Aynhoe Park, when you first pass through its lavish gates, fills you with pride and admiration. “Good morning Madam” greeted the butler as we arrived at the front door of this stunning country home. Aynhoe Park is a party home to celebrate life with family and friends with stunning venues and accommodation in 16 one-of-a-kind bedrooms; with the option for 6 apartments with 12 additional bedrooms.

Aynhoe Park is so special, compared to many other country estates in Britain. It’s a real home, full of warmth, dedication and surprises. The interiors are creative, fascinating and exciting; filled with taxidermy, amazing pieces of art and a great warm atmosphere. The owner, a passionate collector of the historic, the unusual and beautiful has made Aynhoe Park a delightful wonderland full of stories told through objects and artworks. 

Just 50 minutes from London, Aynhoe Park with its 250 acres of Capability Brown Oxfordshire countryside, sits in the medieval village of Aynho on the edge of the Cotswolds. 

Aynhoe Park was originally built in 1615 by the Cartwright family and has been updated over the years as each generation adds their touches. In 1707 Cartwright’s grandson engaged Architect Thomas Archer to enlarge his Jacobean home and include fine touches such as the grand main staircase. Further embellishments followed, introduced by Sir John Soane who remodelled Aynhoe in 1798.

In 2003, James Perkins bough Aynhoe after the dissolution of the Country Houses Association which had converted the building into flats. James has undertook the challenge of restoring Aynhoe, remaining true to the creative vision of Archer and Soane whilst bringing it up to date with his stylish personal touch. Today this Grade 1 listed country house hosts prestigious guests, weddings and parties.

After visiting the property, we noted the most unforgettable traits of this unique estate:

  • A grand Palladian house with rural views
  • Large private collection of plaster corbels, modern sculptures and eclectic taxidermy
  • The passion, vision and hospitality of the present owner
  • Hollywood Regency style salon with theatrical flourishes
  • The grand dining room, a stunning venue for a celebration
  • The vast gallery-like space of the Orangery
  • The privileged archives in the owner’s private library
  • The secret spaces and cubiholes to explore
  • The opulent, creative and welcoming bedrooms
  • The support of the personal butler and their team
  • The tailor made menus, locally sourced and farm fresh
  • The fine English country house tea
  • The memorabilia-decorated games room with yellow baise billiard table
  • The outdoor wooden deck entertainment area with BBQ and hot tub

Aynhoe Park is one of our British Country Estates for rental. Somewhere to discover the country pursuits and history of the Oxfordshire countryside and within a short distance from the quaint villages and antique shops of the Cotswolds.

This year Aynhoe Park is celebrating being on the doorstep of the home of british racing, opening their doors for the 2016 Formula 1 British Grand Prix at Silverstone, hosting the ultimate in luxurious stays.

For more information about Aynhoe Park's offering and our other country homes, please get in touch.

Introducing the British Country Estates Collection

Art de Vivre presents the grandest country homes and estates for rental in Britain, in our brand new British Country Estates Collection. As a British company, we are extremely proud to be representing these prestigious properties that demonstrate the best of heritage, culture and hospitality in the British Isles.

The vast selection of unique experiences available at these estates provide long-lasting memories at these fantastic historical locations. The British countryside is famed for its balance of wilderness and maintained land. Often a focus of historical literature, the backdrop of these estates features maintained private land with expansive rural views. Clearly these private lands are perfect for walks and the local landmarks and peaks are ideal for a more adventurous hike. Corrour Lodge is a modern Scottish revival of a Victorian hunting lodge with the peaks and Loch Ossian nearby making it best suited for guests who love the outdoors.

Traditional rural sports and game hunting is a unique offering at these private estates, whether it be the well sought-after Salmon fishing at Gordon Castle, deer stalking at Aldourie Castle or game shooting at historical estates such as Althorp House. With award-winning shoots and fishing stays, our properties exhibit the best and most traditional backdrops for these distinctive experiences.

Country homes with their vast capacity and hospitality are often used for celebrations. These homes make the perfect venue for banquets, balls, weddings, product launches and parties. The restored estates with a more opulent and modern approach tend to host the most special events. Aynhoe Park on the edge of the Cotswolds provides an ideal setting for events with its hybrid of modern art collections and taxidermy with the historical house and furnishings.

Scotch whisky is world renown and the whisky experiences offered in our new Country Homes collection explores the pinnacle of quality whisky. Enjoy a personal guided whisky tour through the lesser-known whisky distilleries of Scotland. Gordon Castle is a short trip from the Speyside distilleries and lesser-known single grain distilleries.

Plenty of outdoor competitive sports are on offer in the expanse of these estates and iconic sporting arenas are within a short drive from many of the country estates. Candacraig is nearby Royal Aberdeen, Fraserburgh and Trump International golf courses ranked among some of the best golf courses in Scotland. Many other sports are available on the grounds of the estates, such as cricket and local teams can be called on for spectator sports or the grounds can be used for a private game. For those interested in motorsports, Goodwood estate is host of the festival of speed and features their legendary motor racing circuit.

Ultimately the heritage of these properties adds the most prestige. The experience of a private estate that’s retained its history and cultural collections is an important part of the country homes experience. Whether it be the hundreds of artworks and paintings of gentry, nobility and monarchs or the personal furnishings of a proud British dynasty. The restoration and maintenance of these extraordinary homes coupled with the generous hospitality grants that your stay is the very best of British heritage.

 

Our British Country Estates Collection are perfect for events or quiet retreats with traditional experiences. Most of these properties are known for their vast historical heritage, household staff providing the best service in the world and the authentic and unique British experience. We look forward to arranging your country estate stay, please do get in touch.

The Top 5 Private Island Rentals in the Indian Ocean

Art de Vivre is proud to announce its new luxury Private Island Collection. These islands feature exclusive-use rentals, often with their own endemic ecosystem and unique experiences for their prestigious guests. These island paradises are an unrivalled luxury escape for the adventurous traveller.

Cousine Island, Seychelles

As one of the smallest of the Seychelles islands, Cousine offers unparalleled privacy and seclusion to its visitors. With only four luxury villas on the entire island, and some of the most stunning views of untouched nature in the world, Cousine Island is a must visit for lovers of uninterrupted natural beauty. 

As well as being home to beautiful flora and fauna, Cousine Island hosts a variety of native animals, including lizards, turtles and birds. Visitors will be sharing the island with twelve Aldabra giant tortoises, and many extremely rare and exotic Seychelles birds, including the warbler, the blue pigeon and the sunbird. 

Cousine is one of the most conservation-friendly islands in the world. It is managed by the non-profit Nature Seychelles, and part of the profit from each stay at our Cousine Island villa goes towards conserving the island.

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Coco Privé, Kuda Hithi Island, Maldives

Of the 1192 islands that make up the Maldives, Kuda Hithi Island is one of the most beautiful. The island prides itself on being among the most exclusive in the world, reserved only for the lucky few who seek it out and choose to stay. 

At Coco Privé, visitors can walk across the white sandy beaches and soak in the sun by the azure sea or relax and unwind at the island’s luxurious private spa. Those who are feeling a little more adventurous can observe the island’s exotic colourful sea life while snorkeling, or ride the waves on a surfboard, jet ski or kayak.

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North Island, Seychelles

Much like Cousine, its Seychelles cousin, North Island is gorgeous and secluded with stunning beaches and views of the Indian Ocean. The people on the island are also equally dedicated to conserving the natural environment, which features abundant rare wildlife and plants.

The proprietors of North Island are extremely passionate about the wellness of their guests. The island has a spa that takes a holistic approach to rejuvenating the mind, body and soul. Where better to do that than on a private island, far away from the hustle and bustle of the city, and the everyday stress of modern life?

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Miavana, Madagascar

A stunning new exclusive-use private island located off the coast of Nosy Ankao. There are fourteen one, two and three bedroom villas decorating the western coast. With wild beaches, incredible diving, fishing, helicopter tours and a world class spa, Miavana brings a new level of luxury adventure to the Indian Ocean. Designed by Silvio Rech and Lesley Carstens, who also designed the award-winning North Island, Seychelles and Leobo Observatory Villa.

All aspects of design, construction and the management of the lodge have been created with the environment, local wildlife and regeneration of native plants in mind. Restoring the ecosystem by replanting trees endemic to the island has become an important role for the island. Conserving endemic species of wildlife prevents these rare and exclusive animals from becoming endangered. Community work that the estate has focused on includes building a local school and teaching sustainability. Solar, wind and Biomass energy is used to power the island to achieve an independent renewable resource for the villas’ delicate and isolated environment.

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Thanda Island, Tanzania

Opening to guests this month, Thanda Island is perhaps the most exclusive private island in the world. Ten years in development, Thanda Island will give visitors the chance to swim with whale sharks and watch nesting sea turtles in a private marine reserve. 

Thanda Island is located off the coast of Tanzania, in a very secluded location giving guests complete privacy in their personal paradise. The island’s sole villa sleeps up to ten guests, plus children, and has dedicated staff, catering to your every need. Excursions to other islands will be available, though Thanda Island should be varied and exciting enough for even the most experienced private island visitor.

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Our Private Island Collection is the perfect inspiration for a unique and beautiful holiday in the Indian Ocean; the most untouched paradises, fully staffed and featuring plenty of luxury facilities and experiences. We look forward to arranging your island stay, please do get in touch.