The Wood Store, Docking review

We paid a visit to the luxurious and elegant open-plan 2-bedroom holiday cottage close to some of Norfolk’s best beaches.

The Wood Store, Docking

by Kate Hardy |

If you're looking for a base to explore the delights of north Norfolk, look no further than The Wood Store, a recently renovated cottage in the quiet village of Docking. But don't be fooled – this is no ordinary 'base' but more a luxurious retreat, perfect for a spot of self-indulgence and pampering after a hard day holidaying....

Where is The Wood Store?

Docking is just under five miles from Brancaster in north Norfolk, with its wonderful beaches, busy harbour and delicious seafood. Owned by The Wood Store sits alongside an exclusive development of five cottages, all catering for discerning adults and renovated from farm cottages, barns, and workshops into luxury holiday homes.

There’s a thoughtfully laid-out landscaped courtyard with parking for two cars per cottage, as well as an electric car charging point and the garden at The Wood Store wraps around the side and meets a generous patio area with barbecue and garden furniture where you can soak up the sun in private.

Where will I sleep?

It’s the finishing touches and presentation that really impress – and first impressions count. This holiday home hits all the right spots in terms of luxury and relaxation. If that’s what you’re looking for, you’ve come to the right place.

A large, spacious hall has ample storage with a large cupboard for coats and shoes, etc and some fascinating ash nibbe stools. The downstairs loo/shower room features a walk-in rain shower, heated towel rail, sink, underfloor heating and complimentary Noble Isle toiletries.

Stairs rise to the first floor with a window that opens into the second bedroom (privacy blinds provided!) which affords light and space. The landing features a window that overlooks the lounge area and has a seven-legged table made from the roof timbers of the cottage when it was renovated, on which sit beautiful sighthound papier mache sculptures – this is not a cottage for children aged under five!

There are two double bedrooms which have been very elegantly designed. The master bedroom has one of the most comfortable beds I have ever slept in. A Super King size handmade affair, it felt soft yet supportive, luxurious yet homely and was the prefect retreat after a long day exploring Norfolk. Crisp white linen, soft downy duvets and pillows, two built-in wardrobes, lime-washed floorboards with complementary rugs, tasteful artworks that adorn the walls and a wall-mounted TV for indulgent bedtime viewing!

The headboard is a huge, padded, beauty that literally dominates the room and co-ordinates with the accessories. There’s a sweet little window seat that overlooks the courtyard and blackout blinds to ensure you get uninterrupted sleep. A lot of thought and creativity has gone into the design of this cottage.

Luxurious, super-king master bedroom, The Wood Store, Starr Holiday Homes, Docking, north Norfolk
The master bedroom has a Super-King bed for the best sleep ever! ©Photo: Starr Holiday Homes

The double room is decorated in the same tasteful way and features a double bed, window seat, and walk in cupboard, plus a window onto the landing that can be covered with privacy blinds.

There’s a lovely marble bathroom with a stone oval bath (ideal for a soak after a day on the beach), contemporary sink, loo, and large mirror, plus complementary bath robes and slippers, thick fluffy towels and Noble Isle toiletries. Wonderfully indulgent!

Open plan kitchen, The Wood Store, Starr Holiday Homes
The kitchen island features a striking digital print of oak slices! ©Photo: Starr Holiday Homes

The kitchen is open plan with the lounge/dining area and features a central, handmade island with a huge digital print of wood slices. There’s everything you need for cooking and entertaining, such as a microwave, built-in oven and hob, fridge-freezer, dishwasher and washer/dryer, plus plenty of kitchen utensils and crockery. The island houses the sink and there’s breakfast bar-style seating with oak hanging pendants and wall lights - all very stylish.

Open-plan kitchen, The Wood Store, Starr Holiday Homes
The open-plan kitchen has everything you need for a perfect stay ©Photo: Starr Holiday Homes

The dining area has a circular table and is situated next to French doors overlooking the side garden. The lounge area has a fabulously long sofa replete with fat, comfy cushions, plus two armchairs, a solid wood coffee table of handmade ash, and a wall-mounted TV with Netflix. Huge bi-fold doors allow light to flood in but there are beautiful, good-quality heavy curtains to keep the elements out on the colder winter months.

Lounge, Starr Holiday Homes, 2-bed cottage, open-plan, Docking, north Norfolk
The lounge area is perfect for relaxing after a day out seeing the sights ©Photo: Starr Holiday Homes

The main patio area has a landscaped garden and courtyard with free-standing BBQ, pizza oven and patio furniture for the warmer months and lighter evenings.

Delightful patio area with pizza oven, barbecue and garden furniture
Ideal for warmer evenings, the private patio is a great space for a barbecue, complemented by a beautifully landscaped garden ©Photo: Starr Holiday Homes

Little touches such as seasonal scents, hand-picked flowers and a bespoke hamper with freshly baked bread, Norfolk Butter, Mrs Wells cheese and fruit cake all add to the pampered feel.

What is there to do in north Norfolk?

It’s a very short drive from The Wood Store to the beach at Brancaster, or the village of Brancaster Staithe with its National trust activity centre, as well as the lovely little town of Burnham Market. Holkham Hall and beach, and Wells Next the Sea are also a short drive and there is plenty to see and enjoy. Hunstanton (‘Sunny Hunny’) to the west has unique striped cliffs and magnificent sunsets due to its position as the only west-facing resort on the east coast. There are lots of walks and cycling is popular round these parts but if you don’t live near a coast (like me) then the unspoilt beaches are the ultimate draw.

Brancaster beach, quiet, secluded, golden sands, north Norfolk, Brancaster
The beach at Brancaster has miles of sand, perfect for walking or just sunbathing! ©Photo: kate Hardy

We loved walking round the parkland at Holkham Hall and lunching in the courtyard café. The grounds are extensive and there is something to admire in the gardens at all times of the year. Burnham on Sea had lots of lovely little shops to browse in and the beach at Brancaster was vast with hardly anyone about. This area is pretty much unspoilt and perfect for long walks. Wells Next the Sea, with its pine woods, sand dunes, colourful beach huts and never-ending stretch of sand is a coast-lover’s delight and a day on the beach is best finished off with fish and chips at the harbour. This area is also ideal for star-gazing, there’s history and heritage aplenty, nature and wildlife – Blakeney Point is a 40 minute drive from The Wood Store where you can see Common and Grey seals by taking a boat trip from Morston Quay and Blakeney harbour or amphibious boats from Hunstanton.

What is there to eat?

The Wood Store has everything you need to cater for yourself and we enjoyed a cooked breakfast every day but if you fancy dining out, there are plenty of pubs and restaurants serving local freshly-caught fish. We ate at the The Gin Trap Inn in Ringstead, a lovely old pub with rooms dating back to 1668, and again at The White Horse at Brancaster Staithe, situated right next to the sea, with a terrace overlooking the lobster pots, oyster beds and saltmarshes.

There are numerous cafes and coffee shops where you can get cake and refreshments while out and about and of course, being next to the sea, fresh fish is available in abundance, so you’ll never go hungry!

How much does it cost to visit?

Depending on when you visit, and for how long, prices for The Wood Store start at £695 for a weekly stay in low season for 4 guests.

Final thoughts

This is a perfectly co-ordinated, good quality cottage with furnishings and finishing touches that shout luxury (but not too loudly!) creating a feeling of sheer indulgence. If you’re looking for the ultimate in relaxation and want to feel pampered, this stylish, well-thought-out accommodation is the one for you. Perfect for a weekend or a longer stay, with plenty to see and do on your doorstep, you won’t be disappointed.

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