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Thread: Calling all Center Parcs fans!

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    Bunnykins Guest

    Default Calling all Center Parcs fans!

    OK so I know that some people in this forum are not Center Parcs fans, but I would like to use this thread for those who enjoy Center Parcs and would like to share their holiday experiences. I think the Butlins Memories website and forums are excellent and I'd love to get some good conversations going about Center Parcs, just as there are about Butlins.

    So, if there is anybody out there who would like to share their mostly positive holiday experiences at Center Parcs, I'd love to hear from you in this thread!

    I will start off by saying I have been going to Center Parcs regularly since 1990. I also enjoy the Butlins party weekends, if I am looking for a livelier holiday but as I've said before, the two places cannot fairly be compared because they both offer totally different holiday experiences.

    My first encounter with Center Parcs was on my honeymoon at Elveden Forest. We had been given a week's holiday there as a wedding present. At that time the Elveden holiday village had been open for a year and Sherwood was the only other Center Parcs in the UK. We stayed in the honeymoon suite in the Sheldrake Hotel (now renamed the Lakeview Hotel). We had a brass 4 poster bed with lace drapes and a sitting area and TV off the bedroom. There was a round whirlpool and a separate shower in the bathroom. It felt quite special and of course it was all relatively new. The room was situated near the revolving restaurant (and I still remember occasionally hearing the clanging of pots and pans from the kitchen). We really enjoyed ourselves there and still laugh now because we found hundreds and thousands and toenail clippings on the carpet!!

    We enjoyed our stay so much that we returned within 6 months of our honeymoon to show friends. This time staying in a comfort villa at Elveden. Since then I have lost count of the number of times we have been to Center Parcs, but it is well over 20 times as we have often been more than once a year. After those first two visits we always stayed in the Executive villas.

    When Longleat was built we started going there because it is a lot nearer to our home than Elveden and the journey is easier for us. At first we were a little disappointed in Longleat in comparison to Elveden because we love to feed the wildlife on our patio and were used to the Canada Geese at Elveden tapping on our patio door wanting something to eat. Because Longleat had only recently been constructed we found the wildlife all but non-existent, give or take a few small birds. I remember going around all the small lakes by the villas hunting for ducks but finding nothing. The sports lake only had about 4 in total and they weren't friendly. The other downside for us was that Longleat is hilly. However, I am pleased to say that now Longleat is well established the wildlife is just fantastic, and this, coupled with the setting and nice accommodation brings us back time and time again. We have had some great encounters with badgers on our patio (sometimes two at once) which we encouraged to stay for an hour at a time so we could film them. On our last visit we had 3 deer at once eating on our patio and a 4th was not far away. We've had squirrels indoors (OK I know we shouldn't encourage them) and even had one indoors climbing on my hubby's lap!

    So as Longleat is the closest to us, we always go there. Have not been back to Elveden since the fire. Would like to return some day as we loved it there, but it is now a less attractive proposition because of the distance and the fact they do not have 1 bedroom villas (only the hotel rooms). Because the focus of our holiday has become feeding the wildlife on our patio, the hotel rooms are less attractive to us. We have stayed on several occasions in the Executive Apartments in the Pinewoods and Redwoods at Longleat, and although they are nice, the downside is the limited cooking facilities, the lack of private patio and privacy in general, and they are less spacious. We have also tried one of the 3 bedroom, 2 storey Executive Villas at Longleat (No. 911 after it had just been built) which was lovely inside but we personally prefer the relative seclusion of the traditional villas - they are also less imposing to look at as they blend in with the forest setting. Have been to Longleat for both Christmas and New Year breaks too.

    Well I could go on for hours and hours but I think I had better stop here. Looking forward to hopefully hearing from some fellow CPs fans - if there are any out there. Here's hoping!!
    Last edited by Bunnykins; 21-09-09 at 07:44 PM.

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