Special places to stay: The Yan at Broadrayne, Grasmere
Searching for the a cosy bolthole for your next hiking adventure in the Lake District? Meet The Yan at Broadrayne. Once a working sheep farm, the Yan has been reinvented as a modern, lovingly designed and family-run boutique hotel, framed by the dramatic fells of Helm Crag and Silver How. The name of this little hotel translates to ‘the one’ in old Cumbrian dialect, and it’s a suitable name for this friendly and relaxed yet rather chic bolthole, which might just be the one you’ve been searching for.
The Yan’s layout is intimate and simple – downstairs there’s a snug bistro, the ground floor hosts an airy sitting room and up the stairs are just seven bedrooms. I stayed in one up tucked up in the eaves that managed to feel both modern and cosy, with white linen, a skylight for watching the stars from bed and a steamy shower that will soothe all the aches of a big day in the hills away. When twilight descended on the fells outside the window, it felt like a wonderfully cosy spot to xxx.
You’d do well to tear yourself away from your bedroom nook, though – the Yan Bistro, where chef Will serves up concoctions that are the perfect balance of heart and modern, is a wonderful spot for a hearty local feast, whether you’re staying at the hotel or not. The short and tempting menu rambles from comforting smoked squash soup to a rib-sticking Cumberland sausage ring, with most ingredients locally sourced and inspired by Cumbrian flavours.
The Yan is a far cry from an anonymous hotel – this is firmly a family affair, run by a closeknit team (even a little booklet in bedrooms explaining what each member of the family does on the farm), and the hotel definitely benefits for the owners’ obvious love for this beautiful corner of the Lakes.
Head straight out of the door to hike up the hillsides that tower over the Yan to reach Seat Sandal for far-reaching views or an invigorating swim in Grisedale Tarn. Or continue onwards to tackle Hellvellyn, one of my favourite fells. Or if you fancy a more relaxed stroll, 20 minutes away are all the delights of the village of Grasmere’s gingerbread-scented streets. And if you bring your four-legged best mate with you, worry not – one bedroom at the hotel is dog-friendly. Just back at the hotel for sunset – it’s glorious watching the fells turn gold around The Yan.
Perhaps Wordsworth was onto something when he wrote that this corner of Cumbria was “the loveliest spot that man hath ever found.”
Stay at The Yan at Broadrayne from £150 per night.