If you want to go mad and have a beatnik weekend in the heart of the Dorset countryside with your mates, or enjoy a Victorian style house party, or maybe you want to get together with the far-flung members of your family, look no further: Dove House is the perfect Dorset country house self-catering venue. Situated just outside Dorchester, it sleeps 13 in 7 bedrooms – 3 twins, 2 doubles, 1 single – all of which are en-suite, even the single room. There's a beautiful spacious sitting room, equipped with satellite TV and DVD, docking stations for IPods and lots of games and books for rainy days, though when the sun is shining you can also open the doors onto the large garden and patio area where there's a barbecue. The huge kitchen-diner has been recently refurbished to a very high standard and has loads of space for rival cooks – 3 ovens and a six-ring gas hob – and a table that can comfortably seat a dozen people. Plus there's a games room, a large indoor heated swimming pool and a tennis court (the last by prior arrangement). And if you're worried that Dove House is not going to be big enough for your party, you can always rent two-bedroom Swallows next door to take any overspill – which is similarly equipped and has access to the same facilities. Having hired Dove House, you might not want to go far, and there are lots of walks and cycle rides in the local area if that's the case. But if you do, it's worth knowing that the property is very well placed for seeing the best of Dorset - from Dorchester and Thomas Hardy's cottage to the seaside at Burton Bradstock; plus there are lots of good places to eat and drink within twenty minutes' drive. Finally if Dove House is slightly on the larger side, you should know that owner Pippa has another place nearby, Court Close, which is slightly smaller.
Dove House: From £1100 Low season mid week, £1950 low season 3 night weekend. £4800 per week in high season.
Swallows: From £350 low season short break to £800 high season week.
Available all year.
Dove House, Pigeon House Hampton Dorchester Dorset DT2 9DZ
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