When an email popped into Lindsay Hudson’s inbox with information about Goodnestone Park, she and her very good friend Signe Biddle jumped at the chance of being two of the first guests at Goodnestone Park.
Lindsay and her husband live quite close to the Estate and have known it for many years, enjoying visiting the gardens and walking through the woodland glades. When friends had come to stay at weekends, they had often taken them on dog walks to Goodnestone so when the opportunity arose to enjoy the entire house for a country house party weekend Lindsay and a core group of friends jumped at the chance, each couple consequently being asked to invite someone they knew but hadn’t met the others in the group in an effort to expand everyone’s social circle.
As Lindsay and her husband live so far away from many of their friends, they took the opportunity to repay some much owed hospitality and hosted the Friday evening with a Mexican themed chilli night! Lindsay and Signe decided to make full use of the facilities ie the magnificent dining room and hold a dinner party with a French theme on the Saturday.
Friends arrived in dribs and drabs on Friday afternoon and early evening, coming from all over the country, they were excited to all come together under the stunning rooftops of Goodnestone Park. Cocktails were prepared for the Mexican themed evening, margueritas and tequila sunrises went down very well and they all sat down to a buffet of chilli con carne and fluffy rice, and lots to catch up on.
Saturday was a day full of activity for some, and more relaxing for others. Some friends headed off to Canterbury to visit the famous Cathedral and historic site of St Augustine to wander through the medieval streets of this very special city. There was a plan to visit Howletts zoo for a day of fun activities but as the grounds were so nice, the children asked to stay at Goodnestone and play croquet and have fun in the garden. There were walks around the grounds in the sunshine, admiring the views and simply sitting, relaxing and catching up with good friends, dogs had a lovely time too!
Sally and Paul the housekeeper and butler produced the most delicious tea in the library on Saturday afternoon, scones with jam and cream were irresistable and somehow so fitting with the quintessentially English atmosphere of the house. When they sat down for dinner in the dining room, there was a real feeling of celebration in this unique setting.
On the Saturday night everyone contributed to the food and drinks the only rule being no one should spend too much time in the kitchen as the plan was to circulate as much as possible so all dishes had to be pre prepared beforehand. Everyone took their responsibilities very seriously and every dish was amazing including the stunning fruit platter and cheese board produced by one couple.
The cheese board and fruit bowl were supplied by their friends Steve and Cristiano who are about to open a fabulous wine bar in Sandwich called Rosa’s.
‘The house is such high calibre, beautifully interior designed, walking through every room is so inspiring – the attention to detail is exceptional’ Lindsay told us.
Sunday went by too quickly, they really didn’t want to leave, they had such fun all together, croquet on the lawn, lunch outside in the garden with view to die for from the manicured garden. Goodnestone Park has given the Hudsons and their friends the most wonderful memories from a weekend in such a very special place.
If you would like to spend time at Goodnestone Park, for a weekend away or for longer holiday, click here to have a better look at this fabulous house.
Sleeps 24 | Bedrooms: 12 | From £3,500
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