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Romantic houses and retreats in Berkshire and Buckinghamshire

PUBLISHED: 12:50 07 March 2014 | UPDATED: 12:51 07 March 2014

Temple House

Temple House

Archant

Fancy a cosy retreat, a quaint cottage or an idyllic riverside pile? Tessa Harris looks at homes for lovers of romance to suit all budgets

Nashdom SavillsNashdom Savills

A home fit for a princess may be a pipe dream for many, but there’s one on the market in Buckinghamshire at the moment. The even better news is that at £795,000 you don’t have to be an oligarch to buy it – even though it was once home to a Russian prince. It’s certainly not hard to conjure up the romantic vision of exiled royalty enjoying fabulous house parties at Nashdom, the beautiful Grade II* listed country house near Burnham.

The famous architect Edward Lutyens built the extraordinary home for the heiress Frances Wilson who, on her marriage, became Princess Dolgorouki. She wanted a luxurious mansion in which to entertain her royal and aristocratic friends. Lavish river parties and balls were the order of the day.

Now divided into apartments, the conversion has been very sympathetic and No. 1 is currently on the market. It is a fine apartment benefiting from the original drawing room as its primary reception room. Particular features include high ceilings, large shuttered sash windows and ornate fireplaces to both the master bedroom and the columned reception room, with deep plaster coving throughout. To make the most of the 17 acres of grounds and woodlands, there’s an attractive paved, raised terrace with views over the gardens.

With a guide price of £795,000, you get the use of a communal tennis court, swimming pool and gymnasium, too. Contact agents Savills on 01494 731950, www.savills.co.uk

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The Farm House TwyfordThe Farm House Twyford

If you’re in search of your own little bit of paradise, look no further than the fabulous historic farmhouse at Waltham St Lawrence, near Twyford. Paradise Farm, with five bedrooms and character features, comes complete with a Grade ll listed barn and nine acres of grounds. Agents Hamptons are marketing it for £1,300,000. Contact their Maidenhead office on 01628 622 131 or go to www.hamptons.co.uk.

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For a somewhat larger price tag of £1,300,000, you can arrive at your very own home along a drive that sweeps up to a turning circle adjacent to a large ornamental lake. Not only that, but from your luxury bedroom you enjoy stunning views of the river Thames. And if you fancy a little riverside excursion, you have the benefit of not just one mooring, but four. Temple House, in Marlow, was only built in 2006, yet it has to be in one of the best riverside locations for a newly constructed house in Buckinghamshire. Contact agents Savills on 01494 731950, www.savills.co.uk

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Arden Cottage is another little gem. Also dating back to the 17th century, it’s considered of architectural importance because it’s a witchert house. Witchert or wychett, meaning white earth, is the name given to the local earth building material, known as cob in other parts of the country. Such properties are often colour-washed and found in a belt from the Oxfordshire border north-east through Long Crendon, Haddenham and Stone to Aylesbury and beyond to Bierton. This picture-postcard example is in the pretty village of Chearsley and is valued at £635,000. Inside as well as plenty of exposed beams there’s not just one, but two inglenook fireplaces - perfect for those cold evenings in, with a glass of wine in front of the fire. For more information contact Tim Russ & Co., on 01844 217722, or visit
www.timruss.co.uk

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For a real ‘chocolate box’ property it’s hard to best this delightful detached cottage situated in a quiet lane on the edge of Upper Lambourn. Toad Cottage, with its thatched roof and flint walls, is grade II listed and believed to date in part from the 17th century. It boasts a wealth of character including thatched exposed beams and that all important open fireplace. The accommodation includes a comfortable double aspect drawing room, a wonderful split level kitchen/dining room with a vaulted ceiling and a cloakroom.

Upstairs two generous double bedrooms are served by a luxurious bathroom. Outside there is a lovely secluded garden and a garage which currently serves as a gym or home office. There’s even a romantic shepherd’s hut. As estate agents Russell Marshall say: All in all, a very special cottage with a welcoming atmosphere and an idyllic location, overlooking a paddock.” It has a guide price of £499,950 .Telephone 01488 686867, or go to www.russell-marshall.co.uk for details.

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Finally, if Gothic romance holds an appeal for you, then Convent Court in Windsor might be what you’re looking for. With a guide price of £289,950 it means that first time buyers don’t have to go unrequited and could buy a charming one bedroom apartment in a former convent that dates back to 1853. Designed by the renowned ecclesiastical architect Henry Woodyear, the Convent of St. John the Baptist at Clewer has been expertly restored into several homes that retain a romantic ambience. The apartment features excellent ceiling heights, leaded light windows, a bright and airy open plan reception room and a spiral staircase providing access to the upper level.

The restored buildings are also surrounded by landscaped grounds to provide a secluded and peaceful environment – perfect for lovers. Contact Savill’s Windsor office on 01753 834 600, or go to www.savills.co.uk

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