The Vineyard Cottage, Rathfinny
Alfriston, East Sussex | Sleeps 4 | Bedrooms 2 | Parking: Yes | Pet friendly: Yes | Wi-Fi: Yes
From £750 for 3 or 4 nights and from £1200 per week | Min stay 3 nights | Check in days Mondays and Fridays
The Vineyard Cottage, Rathfinny has been carefully and lovingly designed by the family owners of the Rathfinny Estate – to offer guests a serene, stylish stay in the heart of 600 acres of vines spread across the base of the South Downs. A wine-lovers paradise, the cottage is within walking distance to the Estate’s Cellar Door, and its range of restaurants – each of which focusses on using locally sourced, seasonal ingredients. The Estate is a registered B Corp, and the drive for sustainability, and to preserve the beauty of the surrounding landscape, is evident in everything they offer.
Vineyard Cottage comfortably sleeps four adults, or a family, in two beautiful bedrooms. The house blends stable doors, exposed oak, and other rustic touches with clean contemporary furniture and fittings – for a look that is both timeless and modern.
However you spend your time at Rathfinny, we can guarantee you will leave feeling revived and refreshed in both body and soul.
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Ground Floor: Arrive at The Vineyard Cottage through the stable door and enter the spacious open plan living and dining room. The kitchen is modern and brilliantly equipped for your stay, including dishwasher, microwave, fridge freezer, wine fridge and a Nespresso machine for coffee lovers. The ground floor layout is completed by a useful downstairs cloakroom, and a utility room.
First Floor: Upstairs are two calmly decorated bedrooms; the master bedroom features a minimal, Scandi-chic four poster bed (kingsize). The second bedroom is equally spacious and can be configured as a superking or twin. The bathroom is newly and carefully renovated and has a bath and walk in shower. Toiletries are provided.
Outside: There is a secluded courtyard with furniture for dining alfresco and relaxing.
Parking: There is plenty of off-road parking as well as a residents car park. Electric chargers are available on site.
Children: Children are welcome – a travel cot and highchair can be provided on request.
Dogs: Up to 3 well-behaved dogs are welcome. £25 per dog per stay
Pantry items: Tea, coffee, milk, sugar and coffee pods are provided as well as a bottle of Classic Curvee. The Estate can arrange a welcome snack hamper and additional sparkling wines for an extra charge.
Cleaning: An end of stay clean is included in the price.
The Rathfinny Estate is nestled in the Cuckmere Valley, where the South Downs meet the sea, and at the Eastern end of the South Downs way. The nearest village is picturesque Alfriston – well worth visiting. The fascinating larger town of Lewes, as well as the coastal destinations of Eastbourne and Brighton are all within easy reach.
The drive to London takes just over two hours, or there are train stations at Berwick and Seaford, both ten minutes from the estate. The more adventurous may even decide to arrive by bike! Secure cycle storage is available.
The Vineyard Cottage itself is tucked away in the heart of the estate, but within easy walking distance of the Cellar Door, Tasting Room & Winery.
Things to do
Many guests will feel no need to leave the Estate – particularly for shorter stays. The team here are happy to help guests with booking wine tours and restaurant reservations. If you need to work up an appetite (or a thirst!), there is a walking trail around the Estate that takes in many of the most beautiful views and starts at the Cellar Door. For more adventurous walking (or cycling), the South Downs Way is close at hand – join it via a short walk along the valley. The Cuckmere Cycle Company can help with bike hire, including e-bikes, if you’d like some help getting up the rolling hills! Friston Forest offers mountain bike trails as well as waymarked walking routes through the forest glades.
Alfriston is a must-see village in this part of Sussex, with a beautiful church in a magical location, one of the first buildings to be acquired by the National Trust, and numerous shops, tea rooms and pubs. Glynde Place, on the way to Lewes, and Michelham Priory offer further glimpses into the rich Elizabethan history of this area.
There is plenty to keep families entertained in this area, too. Take a trip through time on the beautiful Bluebell Railway, a heritage steam line running along the border between East and West Sussex. The ten-acre Drusillas Park zoo, just five minutes away by car, is perfect for younger children with soft play areas as well as zoo animals and other attractions. Head to the coast for seaside fun, or to admire the spectacular chalk cliffs of the Seven Sisters.
Food and Drink
Dining experiences on the Estate itself are plentiful, and range from The Hut, an alfresco wine bar that also offers freshly baked cakes and hot drinks, the Flint Barns Dining Room, where modern classics are served in a relaxed atmosphere, to The Tasting Room Restaurant, with modern British cuisine and stunning views over the Vineyard and to the South Downs. The Cellar Door sells wines by the bottle or case to enjoy in the comfort of your holiday home from home.
On days out enjoying the surrounds, there are a wealth of options too. Lewes is renowned for its foodie scene – don’t miss the Friday Food Market, Flint Owl Bakery, or quirky Pestle and Mortar, a unique blend of noodle bar, tea room and Asian grocery. Eastbourne boasts a number of waterfront restaurants, and no country walk or cycle would be complete without a visit to one of Sussex’s country pubs. Try the family-run George Inn, in Alfriston, or the Cricketers Farm, in nearby Berwick.
Wow – what a hidden gem nestled away in this beautiful vineyard. We will be back!
Thank you for such a memorable stay and the amazing hospitality given to us when visiting the venues across the estate. A truly special place