Dylan Coastal Resort review

Dylan Coastal Retreat hero

by Emily Gilbert |

Previously known as Laugharne Holiday Park, Dylan Coastal Resort, has recently enjoyed a £7m refurb. Here's how we got on when we were invited to stay and check out the resort.

Where is Dylan Coastal Resort?

Located in South Wales, Dylan Coastal Resort is close to the small town of Laugharne, on the south coast of Carmarthenshire and overlooks the Tâf Estuary. Laugharne is best known as being the home of poet Dylan Thomas before he died and also where he is buried, hence the namesake.

Where will I sleep?

The resort specialises in fully furnished lodges which sleep from four to six guests, some of which have their own private hot tubs. They are tiered onto the hillside, with most enjoying sweeping views of Tâf Estuary.

While most of the accommodation is placed up a steep hill, Dylan Resort offers a chauffeur service where with a simple phone call, you can arrange a golf cart to pick you up and take you to and from your lodge.

A couple of days before we arrived, we were sent our lodge number and pin code for the key box where our key was contained along with a resort map and further information, all via text message. This meant we could head straight to our lodge rather than needing to stop by reception which was really convenient. Despite the map, we had a little trouble finding our lodge as the numbers were on the other side of the lodge rather than facing the road, making it tricky to work out which was ours. Thankfully we were rescued by a passing member of staff and quickly let ourselves into our home for the week.

We stayed in Dylan Lodge 1, a spacious two-bedroom lodge with an open-plan living area with two comfy sofas and smart TVs in every room. Parking for nearby lodges was out front, with views of the Estuary beyond this.

It really was a home away from home, with everything we could possibly need for a four-night stay. The kitchen was really well equipped which is always a relief when you’re doing a self-catering holiday and don’t want to be eating out every day. We were able to easily put together several meals without needing to buy or bring anything other than food, drink and condiments. Even tea and coffee is provided with long-life milk. There’s no need to worry about washing up either as our lodge had a dishwasher, always a relief when you’re on holiday!

The whole lodge was really high-quality and careful thought has clearly gone into the decor which we really appreciated, with pretty touches throughout.

The bathroom was similarly modern with both a shower and bath, especially useful for those with young children who are not old enough to shower yet. There were also toiletries including shampoo and shower gel, which were unexpected but gratefully received.

The decking was a fantastic size with smart outdoor wicker furniture including a six-seater table for alfresco dining and two sun loungers, all with comfy seat pads stored away. The hot tub - easily seating four - was a real highlight and we were in there every day among the bubbles, gazing out at the view.

What is there to do at Dylan Coastal Resort?

While the resort offers a spa, gym, two tennis courts and a playground for children, if you fancy getting out and about, there’s plenty to keep you busy.

Located in such a beautiful part of the world, there’s no shortage of walks to take advantage of. We personally enjoyed Dylan’s birthday walk and the coastal walk, both offering stunning views and fairly easy to follow.

It’s well worth taking a short walk into the quaint town of Laugharne itself, home to a variety of restaurants and shops, where you’ll also find the 13th century Laugharne Castle and Victorian gardens. You may also wish to visit Dylan Thomas’ boathouse (entry fee required) along with his writing shed which sits above and can be peered into as seen in the photo below.

A 30-minute drive will take you to beautiful Tenby with its many soft-sand beaches. We recommend taking the time to walk around them all, picking up fish and chips and stopping for ice cream as you do, of course!

Those with little ones can take a trip to Blue Lagoon, a waterpark offering thrills and spills for the whole family or alternatively, Folly Farm which has lots of friendly farm animals to meet along with a vintage fairground and play areas.

Other options include Manor Wildlife Park, National Showcaves Centre and Aberglasney House & Gardens.

Spa facilities

Also located at the resort is Milk Wood Spa, a dreamy wellness centre which offers state of the art facilities including everything from a herbal steam room to a Tepidarium, with access included throughout your stay. The impressive indoor and outdoor infinity pools have truly maximised the view, with floor to ceiling windows inside which the mezzanine relaxation zone also makes the most of, comfy chairs dotted around for guests to curl up in. We particularly enjoyed the outdoor hydrotherapy pool, where we would lay back on the in-water loungers, enjoyable both during sun and rain.

There is a selection of treatments on offer such as Ishga Seaweed Body Wrap and Regenerating Facial plus the option of getting a pedicure or manicure. My partner booked a full body massage (£90) while I opted for a back, neck and shoulder massage, followed by an express facial (£60 combined on a special offer). We both came out of our treatments utterly soothed and sleepy-eyed, thanks to our attentive and experienced therapist.

Gym bunnies are also well catered for at Dylan Coastal Resort with a gym stocked with high-tech Technogym equipment including a stair master, treadmills, cross-trainers, cable cross-over machine and dumbbells.

We really loved that, aside from treatments, you didn’t need to book ahead of time to use Milk Wood Spa or gym and we could just drop by to use the facilities at our leisure. It was open early and didn’t close until 8pm, meaning everyone has the chance to make the most of the facilities.

What is there to eat?

In the same centre as the spa is Milk Wood Kitchen & Bar, a light and airy space modernly furnished with three separate terraces for outdoor dining that enjoy panoramic views of the estuary. Open Wednesday-Sunday, the restaurant offers several deals over the week including a steak night and curry night. There's also a wood-fired pizza oven, ready to create tasty pizzas.

On the night we visited, we started with olives with bread and a huge garlic and cheese pizza bread before I moved on to perfectly cooked sirloin steak with tomato, mushroom and thick, fluffy chips. My partner decided to make use of the curry deal and chose a pork korma accompanied by coconut rice, poppadoms, mango chutney and a Barry Island beer. Aside from a few leftover chips, we devoured every bite and it was only because of how much we had enjoyed the previous courses that we felt obliged to try dessert too, which was sticky toffee pudding for us both, paired with vanilla ice cream. Both were really generous portions and were exactly how we like them - with plenty of sauce!

Despite a couple of gentle reminders for a missing drink and dessert menu, the waiting staff were friendly and efficient while the chefs must be applauded for such a delicious meal. The menu may not be huge but there is more than enough to get your teeth into and all at a high standard.

How much does it cost to visit?

Prices for a short break start from £269 for a minimum 2-night stay. A stay in a Milk Wood Lodge, which sleeps 4, starts at £365. For more information on booking, visit their website.

Final thoughts

It was a real pleasure to stay at the Dylan Coastal Resort. In our opinion, it is the perfect hybrid of a staycation and spa break and you can truly have your cake and eat it, making it well worth the price to visit.

Suitable for individuals, couples and families alike, you're well placed whether you want to stick to the resort and its incredible facilities or venture further afield for some exploring.

The view just doesn’t get old and it’s easy to see why the resort has capitalised on it with the placement of the lodges, spa and restaurant. Throughout the day, as the tide goes out, the estuary almost completely empties, meaning the scenery changes drastically.

An additional 30 new lodges are being built on the 100-acre site and I’d love to see dog-friendly options on offer as currently, Dylan Resort is - bar assistant dogs - a dog-free zone. As a dog owner myself, I was constantly thinking it would be such a great place to bring furry family members, due to the fantastic location.

If you’re looking for a staycation with a difference, Dylan Coastal Resort is well worth booking for your next getaway.

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