The Retreat Dungeness
An award-winning, architect-designed house built on the shingle beach of Dungeness.
There is nowhere quite like The Retreat. Its exceptional design - not to mention its location on one of the largest expanses of shingle in Europe - means a stay here is an experience you can't replicate anywhere else.
The Retreat is an award-winning, architect-designed house built on the shingle beach of Dungeness, a headland known internationally for its conservational importance.
The exposed landscape creates a sense of wilderness, offering an escape from hectic urban life, and the Retreat provides the perfect bolthole to shield you from the elements. Sleeping up to 10, it is ideal for two families or larger groups.
Due to restrictions in Dungeness requiring new buildings to keep the same footprint as former ones, the Retreat's design is unique and utterly inspired; a one-storey building consisting of three adjoining cabins, clad in materials suiting the exposed surroundings - rusty steel mesh, grey cement fibreboard and silver larch timber.
The building's clean, sleek lines continue inside, where maximum style is achieved through minimalist interior design. White walls are accented by modern furniture, and a sense of tranquillity flows throughout the house.
The main living area is flooded with light from floor-to-ceiling windows offering stunning views of the landscape beyond, and a wood-burning stove provides extra warmth on cold days. The integrated kitchen has everything needed for your stay, including a full-sized dishwasher and laundry facilities. Lit by rustic exposed bulbs, the adjacent dining area is a cosy nook large enough to seat everyone, and the corner window provides panoramic views of the horizon - magnificent at breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Beautiful design continues throughout the next two blocks, housing three bedrooms and two bathrooms. The two main bedrooms, each with king size beds, are softly lit by exquisite pendant lights, and the cosy bedding will keep you sleeping soundly all night. Children will love the third bedroom, imaginatively equipped with six full-sized single berths, four of which are accessed by ladders.
The clean, modern feel extends to the bathrooms, both highly finished with white subway tiles. One bathroom offers a shower, while the other has a shower over a bath - perfect for a soak following an afternoon's exploration of the shingle beach. The whole house is kept beautifully warm by under-floor heating.
Spend your days exploring enigmatic Dungeness, where original coast guard cottages, a Napoleonic watchtower, and a WWII listening post give a sense of the history of this little corner of the UK. You might cross the 15-inch wide tracks of the RH&DR - the world's smallest public railway - and don't miss the (now ramshackle) building where Marconi made his first transmission across the English Channel. Nature-lovers will want to explore the RSPB reserve, and a visit to Dungeness isn't complete without seeing artist Derek Jarman's Prospect Cottage and its famous driftwood garden.
For basic necessities, a small general store can be reached in five minutes by car. The nearest town is New Romney (15-minute drive), with its high street and supermarket.
The Retreat offers a rare chance for families to fully escape ‘plugged-in' life. There is a television but only for the purpose of playing DVDs - there is no TV signal here! Wi-Fi is available at a charge, mobile phone signal can be intermittent and there is no landline, so get ready for the opportunity to down your devices and simply enjoy good company and nature's beauty.
Things to note
3 night minimum stay. As there is no TV signal here, the television is only for the purpose of playing DVDs (please bring your own).
Wi-Fi is available at a charge, and mobile phone signal can be intermittent. A 'clamp on the table' style highchair can be provided - enquire when booking.
Region: Dungeness, Kent
Cost (from): £711 (3 nights)
Minimum stay: 3 nights
Property ref: 525
WiFi (at a charge), under floor heating throughout, fully equipped kitchen, fridge freezer, dishwasher, combined washing machine/tumble dryer, coffee machine, ironing board/iron, tv (for dvds only), wood burning stove, bed linen, towels, hair dryer, parking on site.
Beach, walking, nature reserve, historic site.
At a glance
- An architect-designed, one-storey house in remote Dungeness
- Sleeps 10
- Stunning minimalist interior design
- Integrated living, kitchen and dining area; three bedrooms; two bathrooms
- Perfect for exploring shingle beach, RSPB nature reserve, and historic coastline buildings