Friday, 17 September 2021

Hilltop retreat has views of stunning countryside

Hilltop retreat has views of stunning countryside

IMAGINE leaving your busy town behind you and climbing to the top of a big green hill where you can see for miles and light floods in from all directions.

That is what it feels like to visit Hillview, a spacious six-bedroom property in the tiny hamlet of Oakley Wood, nine miles outside of Henley, just past Nettlebed and on the way to Benson.

Hillview, being jointly marketed by Savills and Warmingham estate agencies at a guide price of £1.95 million, has been extended and renovated in several stages over the years, resulting in a modern open-plan residence that has retained its homely traditional character.

There are many impressive architectural features throughout this house — every room has something unique and interesting to offer and makes clever use of space.

In the downstairs dining room, for example, it has three windows facing in different directions and a wooden arched doorway leading in.

The bedroom directly above is the same shape, with the addition of a tall vaulted ceiling and massive high windows. Upon arrival at Hillview you enter a beautiful atrium — a two-storey high, wide open reception hallway that gives you a real “wow” welcome as you walk through the front door.

There are coat cupboards, a cloakroom and a utility room off the atrium, which leads into a large kitchen / breakfast room that has recently been updated with high specification fittings and appliances. Off the kitchen is a cosy family room and a hallway that leads to a dramatic triple-aspect drawing room that looks over the front garden.

There are five reception rooms in all and central to the drawing room is a fireplace with a traditional brick surround — the luxuriously soft carpet underfoot makes you want to lie down and curl up in front of it like a cat.

Next to the drawing room is a lovely light garden room that leads out to the swimming pool area. It has three walls of windows, making it almost as bright as a conservatory but without the clear roof. It is currently being used as an office but could easily be used as a gym, living room or games room.

Three of the bedrooms at Hillview are upstairs and three are downstairs. The downstairs bedrooms are ideal for a family with teenagers or young adults who want some independence, as they all have their own en suite bathrooms. The house, in all has five bathrooms. If you walk back through the atrium, you find the dining room and another sitting room, which leads to a curved staircase that takes you up to the first floor.

One of the bedrooms upstairs is cosy and quirky with a bed tucked under the eaves and two Velux windows, and the other is the bedroom with the tall vaulted ceiling and massive windows. There is also a family bathroom on this floor.

I saw the most impressive room, the enormous master bedroom suite, last. Accessed through a small seating area and what can only be described as an avenue of wardrobes, the master suite is a unique masterpiece of aesthetic and functional design combined.

It is laid out roughly in the shape of a cross, with four distinct functional areas. In the middle is a dressing area. To the left is the bedroom and to the right is the bathroom.

Straight ahead there is a quiet seating area with a wooden floor and some comfy chairs where you can relax and enjoy the hilltop view at the end of a busy day. On warmer days, this space opens out on to a roof terrace which overlooks the swimming pool.

Hillview is decorated in soft muted tones throughout — giving the house a calm and peaceful feel — and it is refreshingly light, thanks to the many windows of all shapes and sizes.

Being so high up, this house has breathtaking views over the Chiltern Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty — unspoilt woodland and trees bursting into blossom when I was there, vast open skies and rolling hills dotted with lots and lots of sheep.

On the outside, Hillview has mainly brick and flint elevations with some timber boarding and a slate tiled roof. Access is from a quiet road through electric wrought-iron gates on to a driveway and large gravelled forecourt.

The mature and private garden has been elegantly landscaped and has a stone-paved terrace ideal for al fresco dining, or simply reading the Sunday papers outside in the sunshine.

There is a heated outdoor swimming pool and private sun deck outside the kitchen, and to the side of the driveway there is a barn which has been converted into a double garage and gym with a wood-burning stove.

This property represents a superb opportunity for a buyer in search of a peaceful family home with views across the Oxfordshire countryside.

• Hillview has a guide price of £1.95 million and is being jointly marketed by Savills in Henley on (01491) 843000 and Warmingham in Goring on (01491) 874144.

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