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The Independent UK
The Independent UK
Lamiat Sabin

‘Hobbit huts’ in Wales top list of the best holiday lets in UK and Ireland


Two “hobbit-style” huts in Wales have been crowned the best holiday rental in the UK and Ireland.

Nant y Garnedd – a detached single-storey development inside a grassy mound – is on a family-owned farm in Dinas Mawddwy, near Snowdonia.

The twin huts, which topped Sykes Cottages’ UK & Ireland’s Best Holiday Lets list, have been likened to the hillside dwellings of the fictional hobbits in the book and film saga Lord of the Rings.

But unlike Bag End – the palatial abode of protagonists Bilbo and Frodo Baggins – these huts have a wood-fuelled “eco” hot tub in a garden that also has a decked area with a roof to shield guests from the elements.

The property that is big enough for up to four guests is owned by brothers Dylan, 36, and Gwion Jones, 26, and their partners Mared Jones, 34, and Catrin Owen, 26.

They won the top prize of £10,000 for their property, which has only been open for four months so far.

The property won the £10,000 cash prize for ‘best holiday let’ (Provided)

Ms Owen said the win was a “shock”, adding: “We could have never predicted that our dream of creating hobbit houses on our land would lead to this – but what started as a small project alongside the farm has turned into a booming business in just a few months.

“The prize money will help us build on our sustainable ambitions for the huts. When we first started, we wanted to install a hydro scheme so that electricity will be generated by running water, but the installation was too far over our budget.

“We want to make sure people can enjoy the beautiful Welsh countryside while not harming the area and now we will be able to fulfil our original objectives with this prize money.”

The awards – organised for a second year running by Sykes Holiday Cottages – had holiday homeowners competing in five categories.

Smaller cash prizes were awarded to the winners in individual categories that included best renovation, most quirky holiday let, best interior, and best view.

The judging panel included Sykes Holiday Cottages CEO Graham Donoghue, The Times’ deputy property editor Carol Lewis, and Vanessa Warwick, the founder of property investor forum Property Tribes.

Properties were judged on factors including customer reviews, location and facilities.

Judges were also asked to consider if each property could be described as first-choice staycation option for holidaymakers.

Mr Donoghue said: “These awards don’t just showcase the very best of the UK and Ireland’s holiday lets, they also highlight the hard work that goes into holiday letting across the country.

“These owners make Britain’s staycation market the success it is today and with so many incredible holiday lets on offer it is little surprise to see so many people rediscovering their love of a great British staycation once again.”

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