The Pig Shed Motel is not any ordinary motel. We recently visited Mollies Motel & Diner in Oxfordshire (see our review here) and discovered an impressive restyling of the traditional American Motel and Diner.
The Pig Shed Motel Swaffham, Norfolk is much smaller in scale and presents a rather more English re-imagining of a motel from this side of the pond. Just off a main road to the coast and within easy striking distance of most North and West Norfolk’s major tourist attractions.
The first thing one notices upon arriving is that the Pig Shed is extremely unlikely to have ever seen any porcine inhabitants in any recent incarnation. Situated behind the George & Dragon Pub the two modest single storey buildings that make up the motel are almost new, attractive and well-built with wood-clad exteriors and clay tiled roofs.
You can park virtually outside the door on the gravel drive, whilst a central island, along with all the surrounding land has been seeded with wild flowers which grow in attractive and colourful profusion. The eco-friendly credentials are also apparent from solar panels which line the roof and supply most of the hot water and underfloor heating. Re-cycled rain water also supplies the toilets.
Despite being fairly close to the road the landscaping, impressive soundproofing and windows that open towards open countryside give the place the feeling of being set in a peaceful rural spot. In the new Covid reality many will appreciate the easy contactless check in via app or key card and the private exterior entrance afforded by the motel style.
The property consists of just ten rooms, two of which are family suites. Each room is an excellent size and bigger that one would expect given the great value price tag on the stays here.
A lot of effort has clearly gone in to the interiors which are a very stylish country chic. Walls are in a restful pale grey with off-white floor tiles. Rustic elements are introduced via faux-wood tiled walls, sisal matting plus a rustic desk and bag stand with recycled timber.
There is a nod to mid-century styling in our Danish style armchair, but each room has a slightly different individual touches. The bedding is also pleasingly high quality with crisp linen whilst throws and cushions from a Welsh wooden mill are also stylish and top quality
All the little extras are good quality, without being on the extravagant side, and well thought out. Tucked in a cupboard is a Nespresso machine with tea and biscuits and fresh milk in the mini fridge. There is a big TV with lots of satellite channels and high speed Wi-Fi.
The Pig Shed Motel bathrooms are simple but stylish with plain white walls, big mirrors and bath/shower combinations with the same faux wood tiling. Water is not scalding hot given its solar source but always supplied more than enough for our baths.
Breakfast and evening meals can be taken at the George and Dragon, a minutes stroll away. Recently totally refurbished it is a historic pub given a sympathetic and super-stylish contemporary makeover.
It has original beams, fireplaces, wooden floors, and exposed brickwork that are mixed with cool lighting, church pews and objets d’art. Run by the people behind the trendy Well’s Deli at nearby Wells Next the Sea it is a better than average spot for good value dining in atmospheric surroundings.
From The Pig Shed Motel we made short daily excursions to the local attractions visiting for example Sandringham, Houghton Hall (read our Anish Kapoor exhibition review here), Holkham Hall and Beach, Castle Acre Priory, the pretty coastal villages and impressive nature reserves.
All are within about thirty minutes drive.
Clearly this is not a destination hotel with a range of lounges, dining options and leisure facilities but a great, simple spot to use as a base for exploration. Extremely easy on the wallet this is a convenient and very impressive small motel that is also eco and Covid-friendly. What’s not to love?
For more information visit The Pig Shed Motel
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