Exeter Living Magazine

Exeter Living

This month, we were absolutely delighted to have been approached by the editor of Exeter Living Magazine.  She asked if we would be interested in being featured in their glamping piece. Of course we were thrilled and immediately said yes.

Having seen our site and followed our social media, she felt The Orchard Retreat really summed up glamping in Devon.  How lovely!

Chat

We had a lovely chat about the site and given how close we are to Exeter it all fitted together perfectly. We have so much to offer our guests and were delighted to share this with Exeter Living.

In Print

It is always so nice when your hard work is recognised – so to be in print was so exciting.

This months copy came out on the 21st May and has lots of wonderful articles about whats happening in and around Exeter.

 

Eco-Age Interview – Our Green Journey

It Is A Fairytale Of Calm That Develops With The Seasons

‘Since opening their dream-come-true collection of bespoke cottages and yurts, Orchard Retreat, Vicky and Nick Ritchens (along with their daughter Maddy and the now famous Moon Dog), have won a roll call of awards – just this week extending to a silver from Green Tourism. It’s a fairytale of calm that develops with the seasons.’

Now that is quite an opener from our recent interview with Eco-Age.

Eco-Age

Shortly after being awarded silver by Green Tourism, we were invited by Dolly Jones of Eco-Age.com to talk about our green journey. We of course excitedly accepted.

It was so lovely to sit and chat about our business with such an innovative eco agency.  Telling our story really highlighted how far we have come.  Plus it allowed us to offer advice and inspire (we hope) other businesses looking to set up a sustainable venture.

Dolly, who was formally Editor of Vogue.com and who has written about us before, is now the Chief Content Officer for Eco-Age.  Eco-Age is an eco consultancy who, in their words; offer bespoke sustainability solutions for the mutual benefit of people and the planet – I mean how brilliant!

The drive to be as sustainable as possible is really important to us and funnily enough our daughter Maddy’s favourite colour is green.  Perhaps our ambition to run a low impact business has rubbed off on her, or perhaps her favourite colour is just green.  Regardless, to be interviewed by Dolly about where we are environmentally and how we got there was just amazing.

It was also such a privilege that the piece was published on Eco-Age’s new digital platform, launched last week.  Take a look at the full interview via the link below and see what you think.  We would love to hear your thoughts on eco tourism.

Eco-Age Interview by Dolly Jones 

 

New Feature: The Week Magazine

More Media

Following our feature in The Sunday Times in April, we were delighted to then be mentioned in The Week Magazine.

feature; media; press; mention; glamping; the week

The Week Magazine sums up the news from many different sources, pulled together in one easy read for those of us who love the news but have little time.  Perfect!

With the weather being that much warmer, there isn’t a better time to come glamping here at The Orchard Retreat.  Devon is looking just stunning – so green and beautiful.  So with this extra coverage via our recent press features, we do hope to encourage more people to take a break and come and enjoy all we have on offer here at our award winning site.

Guests will even be able to try out our new badminton court – set on the lawn outside the facilities lodge, so much fun. Or read a book with glass of fizz – hum, choices choices!

drink; lawn; relax; games; book

Time can really run away with you here, so many wonderful distractions.  The countryside right on the doorstep of your yurt, the peace and quiet, the relaxation, the tub house, the lawn games and much more – oh it’s making me want to go on holiday too…

There are still dates available for those people who want to beat the summer rush and get away early.  Great for couples, friends, young families and groups so please do get in touch as we would love to hear from you.

 

 

 

 

The Sunday Times Coolest Camp & Glamp Sites

sundaytimes; feature; article; sunday; themes

Article 15th April 2018

We were delighted and surprised to have been chosen as the only camp or glamp site in Devon to be featured in The Sunday Times coolest camp sites article this month.  Featuring 20 of the coolest places to visit, the article covered sites in many different counties of the UK and they gave us a lovely write up.

sundaytimes; feature; article; sunday; themes

Marketing your business can be a minefield, whilst wearing all the various hats of a business owner, marketing is definitely one of the toughest areas to get right and it can be so difficult to choose who to list your site with. So when a national broadsheet chooses you, out of so many wonderful others, it makes your day, month, even year! Plus it gives us confidence that we are definitely doing something right.

As the glamping industry grows and evolves, there are so many different places to visit and we have found that people are also looking for that little extra on site, as well as the unique accommodation.  Therefore, it is essential to offer lots of additional experiences that will make your guests’ stay that much more memorable.  Some of the extras we offer were mentioned in The Sunday Times which was brilliant.

So with that in mind, below is the full list of lovely extras we offer here at The Orchard Retreat.

Our Extras

  • Outdoor bathroom with two cast iron baths and a shower
  • Hand built clay pizza oven
  • Fire pit
  • Yoga
  • Massage
  • Private supper club
  • Shop with a range of local goodies and alcohol
  • Badminton, outdoor table tennis and other outdoor and indoor games
  • Communal indoor space with WiFi, sofas and board games – for those rainy days

We also have access to lots of other activities such as spoon carving, basket weaving and foraging.  Plus there are some great places to explore right on our door step and we are well located for day trips to the North and South coast and both Dartmoor and Exmoor.

Yoga Retreat

We are also excited to be hosting our first yoga retreat in September.  Places are still available so please do let us know if you would like to join us. Email stay@theorchardretreat.co.uk or call 01363 866058 to discuss this further.  There is an early bird price for bookings before the end of May so it is worth getting in touch soon!

The Sunday Times Article – don’t forget you have to sign up to read the whole article, but it’s worth it!

 

 

Vogue Strike a Pose

Vogue

Vogue, strike a pose!  A yoga pose that is, as we are featured in the latest Vogue online piece about the best holiday destinations for families.  Such an amazing write up by Dolly Jones, Digital Content and Strategy Director of Conde Nast.

Delighted

We are so delighted to have been reviewed by such a prestigious brand.  Described as a secret pocket of complete escapism, Dolly really does tell it as it is.

Our guests can enjoy time with family or friends, explore the countryside, go to the beach, visit the moors and spend time here at The Orchard Retreat.  Sounds perfect to me!

It gives us such a boost and confidence that what we are offering is hitting the mark.  With our unique mix of glamping in our yurts or by staying in one of our beautiful cottages – you really can do it all.

At The Orchard Retreat

Whilst on site at The Orchard Retreat you can:

  • Relax in our open air tub house
  • Take a yoga lesson
  • Have a massage
  • Make pizzas in our hand built pizza oven
  • Play in the tree house
  • Explore the meadows and orchard
  • Congregate around the communal campfire
  • Play one of the many games available to guests
  • Bring your dog

Don’t forget we are available for romantic breaks too and the occasional wedding reception.

To read the whole Vogue.com piece click the link below:

Best Family Destinations 

 

Easter at The Orchard Retreat

Easter Glamping and Cottages

What a fantastic Easter it has been here at The Orchard Retreat! Spring has well and truly sprung and we are so happy to be up and running for our fourth season.

We couldn’t have asked for a better time for our guests; with children playing and enjoying their Easter treats, families celebrating birthdays in style with a supper club feast, The Hidden Tubhouse being open and a big hit for all (the feedback has been fantastic) and everyone loving feeding the lambs who just arrived in our top meadow.

What Our Guests Said

One family loved it so much they decided to re-book all three yurts as they checked out, so they can bring their friends in 2018 during the May half term. Our Easter weekend group re-booked for the same time next year, hiring both cottages and two yurts and we were delighted with the positive reviews.  Here are just some of the comments:

‘Highly Recommended’ 

Back from our second trip to The Orchard Retreat.  This is the perfect getaway to experience the romance and simplicity of life under canvas in tranquil surroundings, but without hassle and all the creature comforts.  Vicky and Nick have thought of everything in terms of equipment and facilities.  The outdoor tub house is a great new addition. Had such a lovely time.  Highly recommended and we will be back for more.

‘The Holiday from Heaven’

This place was so quiet and tranquil, perfect for my daughter who hates anywhere crowded due to anxiety.  However, here she was calm and really enjoyed it.  Nick, Vicky, Maddy and Moon are an amazing family who take wonderful pride in what they own, the cottage was immaculate.  Probably the cleanest place we have ever stayed in.  Definitely coming back soon.

‘Amazing’

What a find! This was our first experience of glamping as a family and it was absolutely fantastic. From the warm welcome to the outdoor wood-burning pizza oven and the most beautiful well kitted out yurt (plus many other fantastic features), it was lovely.  Nothing was too much trouble and we can’t wait to go back.

Post Easter Blues?

If you are already dreaming of your next break, perfect for friends, couples or families – then look no further.  The Orchard Retreat here in Devon is the place for you.  Especially if our latest offering takes your fancy – one to one, couples and group yoga with our local yogi Vivian Hampson.  For further details about Vivian and our other ‘nice little extras’ take a look at the website under the ‘about’ tab!

To book a stay, check availability on our website and book directly or call to discuss your desired dates.

 

 

Summer, fun & Moon Dog

Russet web Moon

I really shouldn’t have waited so long to write my next blog – I would like to use the excuse that the summer season took over and the to do list is long…but the truth is I have been meaning to write for a while and haven’t.  So, here we are – better late than never so they say!

A lot has happened since April and our wonderful feature in the Sunday Times Travel, we were awarded the Visit England 4 star award for self catering and their Glamping gold award.  We also received a TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence for the second year running.  We welcomed new and returning guests – lovely wonderful guests, who have relaxed, explored and made friends whilst holidaying here at The Orchard Retreat. What a great season!

4st-self-catering  tripadvisor-2016gold-award-sticker-sign2-2

 

The feeling that we have created something magical, a word used so often by guests to describe their experience here, is so amazing to us and only fuels our desire to continue to evolve.  It is so important that we ensure the wants and needs of our guests are met.  Obviously, our newfound confidence is also based on the fact we have just come to the end of a successful third season and know the ropes a lot more – less paddling more swimming.  Plus feedback, press recognition and recently being awarded the Visit England Gold award for Glamping helps.

We are so keen to continue to make The Orchard Retreat one of the best and most recognised glamping sites in the UK.  Sounds bold, but hey you have to have something to work towards.

If our most famous member of The Orchard Retreat, Moon (our dog), well Moon Dog, as he is known, could talk he would be telling all sorts of stories.  Most likely to the chickens, his other animal friends here on site, about how many sausages he ate at various BBQs he invited himself to and the endless cuddles from children and adults alike, even the fire pit parties he attended.  He really has immersed himself in the glamping and holiday cottage ways – so different from the town life we came from in Gloucestershire over three years ago

Having been mentioned in a wonderful new book, by urban forager John Renston (The Edible City, A Year of Wild Food) in the form of a cocktail – The Moon Dog Martini, he really is taking it all in his stride. Watch this space for his memoirs coming soon – The Orchard Retreat, stories through the eyes of Moon!

The Edible City, A Year of Wild Food 

 

As Featured In The Sunday Times Travel

methode-sundaytimes-prod-web-bin-00baa3b8-07b3-11e6-94fc-8baed4232dc4

Wow, to be chosen by The Sunday Times and featured in their ‘Glamp it up’ piece, where they picked 20 of the most stylish yurt, shepherd hut and geodesic pod sites in the UK, was just amazing!

We were surprised and delighted to see The Orchard Retreat in print, especially with Bramley yurt being used as the main picture. What an honour to have qualified to be part of their feature.

Having worked hard to create a special space for our guests to enjoy, our confidence has just grown and grown, mainly due to their wonderful feedback – so thank you, a real team effort.  Here’s to a great 3rd season!

See The Article Here

Devon Life

 

Orchard Retreat Devon Life

Having completed our second yurt season and finishing the year with our cottages – we were delighted to be featured in the November issue of Devon Life.  It’s a lovely article about The Orchard Retreat and discusses our journey from Gloucestershire to Devon and what we have to offer here, with a few local delights thrown in.

We had such a fun and varied second season, with a foraging weekend, a wedding party and whole families taking over the cottages and yurts.  There have been lovely evenings around the fire pit and pizza nights using the cob oven.

All in all we have enjoyed the year enormously and couldn’t have asked for more.  Ideas are flowing for next season, to include an improved pond area, with access from the Orchard and hopefully a wood fired hot tub – watch this space!

In the meantime, we hope you enjoy the article (page 244) and that you all have a Happy New Year.

Devon Life – The Orchard Retreat 

 

 

 

Food Urchin

 

It’s always great when you welcome back guests and we have been so pleased to see so many familiar faces (as well as plenty of new ones) during our second season.

We have been bowled over with the feedback from everyone and our Tripadvisor reviews have all been just lovely – we even won a 2015 Certificate of Excellence – very exciting!

Most recently, one return guest and food blogger, Dan Kingston, decided to base his latest blog on his stay in Russet yurt here at The Orchard Retreat.  It’s a light hearted review in his usual style but gives a great honest take on his family holiday here in August and is well worth a read – it definitely made us laugh!

Food Urchin Blogspot 

If you want to follow the Food Urchin on twitter, you can find him @FoodUrchin!