the great indoors: five stunningly beautiful interiors in Dorset
Dorset isn’t just for outdoor adventures – there’s plenty for the interior design lover to enjoy too…
At Dorset Cereals we think breakfast shouldn’t be eaten in a hurry: it deserves proper time for enjoyment, and ideally in a beautiful room. In our quest to find suitably stylish spaces we’ve worked with some fabulous interior designers from across the UK in our competitions, including Humphrey Munson, who make kitchens like this:
Image: Humphrey Munson.
…and the wonderful Annie Sloan, whose Chalk Paint colours can make dining rooms look like this:
Image: Annie Sloan.
So suitably inspired, we thought we’d bring you some of the fabulous interiors close to our home in Dorset. Of course Dorset has a Great Outdoors – but it also has a pretty fantastic Indoors too. Here are some of our favourite interiors from around the county…
1. The Pig on the Beach, Studland
Above and top: The bar at the Pig on the Beach. Image: The Pig.
The string of Pig hotels across southern England are rightly famous for their affordable luxury, outstanding food and stunning interior design. And Dorset’s boutique Pig on the Beach hotel is no exception.
It’s set by the sands of Studland Bay, but you could happily spend a weekend here without once venturing outside. Using the signature Pig style of mismatched furniture, vintage décor and rich colours, the bar and kitchen restaurant are just lovely places to chill – and the rooms feature bare floorboards, quirky artworks and monsoon showers. And you can get a massage in a converted shepherd’s hut, to boot.
Inside a Hideaway at the Pig on the Beach. Image: The Pig.
The lounge at the Pig on the Beach. Image: The Pig.
2. Kingston Lacy, Wimborne
The Marble Staircase at Kingston Lacy. ©National Trust Images/James Dobson
If you like your interiors on a rather grander scale, then how about an enormous country mansion built to resemble an Italian palace?
The Grade I listed Kingston Lacy is about as splendid as it gets, and includes gardens by Inigo Jones, artworks by Titian and Velasquez and an astonishing collection of Egyptian artefacts amassed by the intrepid 19th century owner of the house, William John Bankes. As for the interiors, well if lavish marble staircases, elegant saloons and vast chambers filled with precious antiques are your thing, then you’ll feel right at home.
The Spanish Room was created between 1838 and 1855 to display the Spanish paintings acquired by William Bankes. ©National Trust Images/John Hammond
The Saloon at Kingston Lacy. The coved ceiling, cornice and fieze was built in 1782 by Robert Furze Brettingham. ©National Trust Images/Andreas von Einsiedel
The house is run by the National Trust and was lovingly restored in recent years. You can read more and plan your visit here: www.nationaltrust.org.uk/kingston-lacy
3. Marine Theatre, Lyme Regis
The fabulous Marine Theatre bar. Image credit.
This local gem is a thriving 120 year-old theatre on the seafront of Lyme Regis. It hosts over 200 shows each year (this summer the big production is the story of the Monmouth Rebellion) but for interior design enthusiasts it’s worth a visit just for the gorgeous bar, which is as characterful and, well, theatrical as a shabby chic/upcycled/recycled décor can get.
Listings and information: www.marinetheatre.com
4. Rick Stein, Sandbanks
Image: Rick Stein, Sandbanks
This spanking new addition to Rick Stein’s seafood restaurant empire is in the very desirable location of Sandbanks – and is suitably smart, tasteful and beautifully done. There are striking artworks, cool relaxing blues, and light streaming through the seafront windows.
The food’s pretty good too.
Image: Rick Stein, Sandbanks
Bookings and information here: rickstein.com/eat-with-us/rick-stein-sandbanks/
5. Belmont, Lyme Regis
Hallway at Belmont. Image: The Landmark Trust.
The Landmark Trust have also carried out a stunning restoration of Belmont, a Georgian villa overlooking Lyme Bay.
You can read about the famous literary connections of the house in our special post here – but if you’re an interiors enthusiast then you’ll love the Regency rooms in gorgeous pinks, yellows and greens, all decked out in authentic period furniture.
Regency sitting room at Belmont. Image: The Landmark Trust.
Bedroom at Belmont. Image: The Landmark Trust.
Find out how to visit and stay at Belmont here: www.landmarktrust.org.uk/search-and-book/properties/belmont-25015
…and one to make your own interiors beautiful…
6. the Farrow & Ball showroom, Wimborne
Browse the famous 132 unmatched colours at the F&B showroom. Image: Farrow & Ball
You know the colours, but did you know that the Farrow & Ball paint dynasty was born down here in Dorset? In 1946 chemist John Farrow and engineer Richard Ball met at a local clay pit and bonded over their love of making rich colours from original formulations They built their first factory in Verwood and were soon supplying paint for clients as prestigious as the Admiralty, the War Office and Ford Motor Company.
Today the F&B logo is a byword for top quality home interior decorating and they have stores from Paris to New York, but they still make all their paints down here in their home county. At the Wimborne showroom you can see (and experiment with) the entire collection of paint colours and wallpapers.
See more at: www.farrow-ball.com/wimborne-showroom/
Have we missed your favourite Dorset interior? What’s the most beautiful building in your neck of the woods? Do share your pictures with us – we’d love to see them…