Longlands luxury safari lodges in North Devon, has been named as Glamping Business of the Year at the Devon Tourism Awards 2016. Glamping is a new category for the 2016 awards which are run by Visit Devon, and the ceremony took place at The University of Exeter on Thursday 10th November 2016.
We are so delighted that our hard work over the past five years has been recognised,” says Bella Given, owner of Longlands which lies in the North Devon AONB and overlooks the coast. “The entire Longlands team has put their hearts and souls into making it a success, so it is wonderful to celebrate with them tonight. This accolade is all the more special because it is the first competition we have ever entered. It’s brilliant that glamping is a standalone category for the first time because it is a totally different experience to staying in self-catering accommodation, and one that is increasing in popularity every year.”
Longlands offers five six-person luxury safari lodges that are available for weekend, mid-week or full week stays from mid-March to the end of October. Bella has seen a big increase in demand for glamping holidays since opening in 2011 particularly from those in the South West: “Last year, almost 20% of our bookings came from those staying in the Southwest, almost three times the number from the previous year. It’s wonderful that more people are choosing to stay closer to home to make the most of beautiful places right here on our doorstep in the Westcountry. Some of our customers come from Exeter and Plymouth, others from as near as Bideford and Barnstaple and one family from just ten minutes down the road!”
Bella explains that coming to Longlands on the edge of Exmoor is an escape: “We are cocooned in a secluded valley, just a couple of miles from the sea, so although some people only drive a short distance to get here, mentally we are a million miles away from the strains and stresses of everyday life.” She offers the Longlands Larder menu so that guests can enjoy home-cooked meals in their lodges and the pantry shop is fit to burst with five-star gourmet treats from mini cheese truckles to artisan chocolate and local ales.
Longlands provides luxurious camping under canvas with a sense of adventure: “We go to enormous lengths to put ourselves in the shoes of families, couples and groups of friends who might stay here so that we can tailor the menus, safari lodges and bespoke adventure books to their specific needs,” explains Bella who lives onsite in the Longlands farmhouse with her husband, two children and dachshunds, Mimi & Honey.
As Devon winner of the glamping category, Longlands now qualifies as a finalist in the South West Tourism Awards in February 2017.