Gellihaf House’s long and rich history now sits easily with the carefully woven delivery of modern-day grand accommodation and all its little luxuries. Perhaps it’s not surprising with Howard’s military background, and Cath’s attention to detail, that their painstaking renovation of this gorgeous, once rambling, Arts and Crafts farmhouse has yielded such stunning results, but their energy and drive, to give it a new life, is impressive.
Original features have been retained everywhere despite a meticulous ground up ‘nuts and bolts’ restoration. The house is flooded with dappled light, diffused through the atmospheric stained glass in the hallway and the iconic half round window, which is cleverly echoed in Gellihaf’s branding. The expansive warmth of the polished wood, the sturdy and generous staircase, the comforting ticking of a Grandfather clock and the coal fire in the hallway effect an evocative and warm welcome.
The spacious sitting room has a statement open fire, a pair of enveloping sofas that will deliver a welcoming ‘Cwtch’ after a day in the mountains. The interior styling is an interesting but gentle nod to the previous careers of Cath and Howard, and there’s even an ‘Honesty Bar’. It’s an easy and comfortable space, best enjoyed with a book and a glass of something whilst gazing out at the gardens, but if you absolutely must keep an eye on the office, there’s a huge flat screen TV with Netflix, and a desk area with fast internet connectivity.
There are three stunning bedrooms, think muted modern tones, king sized sleigh beds, luxury Egyptian bedlinen, rainfall showers, sink-into tubs, and gorgeous bathroom underfloor heating. The ‘home, not a hotel’ atmosphere runs through to the carefully chosen toiletries, proper coffee and something freshly baked from the kitchen. The largest room, Sirhowy, has two double sleigh beds, and catches the last of the sunset rays across the valley.
Outside are two acres of well-tended grounds and enchanting gardens. Take a wander over to Viaduct View and say hi to Maggie the Mermaid on the way. There’s even a croquet lawn complete with ‘Downton style’ summerhouse. We loved the fabulous breakfasts, making great use of the local butcher, but the already legendary Gellihaf Welsh cakes and scones are the crowning glory of Cath’s home baked afternoon tea, which, on a sunny day, taken outside when the sun shines, is hard to beat.
About South Wales ValleysA stunning landscape perfect for walking, cycling and many other outdoor activities. The Valleys has a unique history, including a Wolrd Heritage Site, Wales’ largest Castle and Big Pit, the real coal mine attractions.
Your hosts, Cath and Howard, seem to live and breathe hospitality, their boundless passion for adding that little bit extra to a stay that makes it unforgettable is genuinely infectious.0808 901 9753 firstname.lastname@example.org Gellihaf House, Blackwood, NP12 2QE