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Review and Video of Rhedyn Guesthouse, Powys, Mid Wales

Posted by Rhiannon Batten at 01:38 on Wednesday 05 June 2013

Rhiannon Batten stays at a warm and welcoming three-room B&B in the green heart of Wales with stylish accommodation and wonderful food

>> For contact details and booking, see our full listing of Rhedyn Guesthouse.

The cosy Rhedyn guesthouse is in a secluded and beautiful part of Mid Wales. Photo: GreentravellerThe cosy Rhedyn guesthouse is in a secluded and beautiful part of Mid Wales. Photo: GreentravellerThe rooms
Two of the guest house’s three en-suite double bedrooms, The Priest’s Closet and The Stables, are on ground level just to one side of the house while the third, The Hayloft, is upstairs in the main building. All are variations on a light and comfortable theme, with good quality mattresses and linen on double beds, immaculate modern bathrooms (Space NK bergamot-scented toiletries are a sophisticated addition) and some really thoughtful touches; sherry and welshcakes are included on the tea tray alongside tea, coffee and fresh milk and each room comes with a small but carefully chosen selection of books (there are many more in the living room). The rest is down to personal choice.

If you’re less mobile, you’ll prefer one of the ground floor rooms – both come with walk-in showers while The Stables also has underfloor heating and, with its partly exposed stone wall and white-painted tongue and groove, slightly more character. If you like wallowing in a hot bath after a day’s hiking, go for Hayloft with its deep free-standing bath. Most importantly, do tell owners Muiread and Ciaran in advance if you have any special needs and they’ll do their best to accommodate you. We asked to borrow a travel cot for our baby and, when we arrived, it was already up and very cosily made up – a big help after a long journey with a tired little greentraveller in tow.

The rooms are all variations on a light and comfortable theme, with good quality mattresses and linen on double beds, immaculate modern bathrooms. Photo: GreentravellerThe rooms are all variations on a light and comfortable theme, with good quality mattresses and linen on double beds, immaculate modern bathrooms. Photo: GreentravellerThe activities
A great area for outdoor activities, with a red kite feeding station nearby, a range of walks to stride out on (try leapingstiles.com for suggested local routes and green-events.co.uk for walking festivals and other muddy boot-based events in and around nearby Llanwrtyd Wells), the Elan Valley to cycle around and the Brecon Beacons national park close at hand, Cilmery is also only half an hour from Hay on Wye if you want to browse the bookshops, visit the annual Hay Book Festival or go for a paddle along the Wye (wyevalleycanoes.co.uk).

The guest house is also very close to the Royal Welsh Showground, home to the Royal Welsh Show and various other events throughout the year), and to Erwood Station craft centre – a good place to pick up a souvenir from a local artist.

The cosy living room's open fireplace and oversized sofas lends itself to convivial evenings, pre- and post-dinner. Photo: GreentravellerThe cosy living room's open fireplace and oversized sofas lends itself to convivial evenings, pre- and post-dinner. Photo: GreentravellerThe food
Owners Muiread and Ciaran are serious foodies, so it’s no surprise that the breakfasts here are excellent. All the staples  - fruit juices, cereals, yoghurt, fresh fruit and compotes – are done with great care and an eye on provenance (no catering company jams here) and hot dishes, from porridge to a full Welsh breakfast, are also available. Beside the dining table is a little cabinet stocked with the couple’s homemade jams and chutneys if you want to buy more to take home. Packed lunches (£7.50pp) can be ordered in advance and it’s well worth booking in for dinner, especially if you don’t fancy a drive or taxi ride. Three courses cost £27.50pp (wine and beer are BYO) and you’ll eat better here than in many a local restaurant.

On our visit we followed grilled sardines and beetroot relish (served with a salad freshly picked from the garden) with the best slow roast pork belly in living memory (the pickled mirabelles and rosemary laced boulangères potatoes it came with weren’t bad either) and dainty blueberry and lime cakes. Muiread and Ciaran also recommend the restaurant at the Abermule Inn, around an hour away, for steaks or burgers made with Welsh wagyu beef from cattle reared on the surrounding hills and pints of Sunshine ale from nearby Monty’s Brewery.

Owners Muiread and Ciaran are serious foodies, and the breakfasts and evening meals are excellent. Photo: GreentravellerOwners Muiread and Ciaran are serious foodies, and the breakfasts and evening meals are excellent. Photo: GreentravellerThe Green
Rhedyn has been awarded Silver from the Green Tourism Business Scheme, though Muiread and Ciaran say they have been "green" forever - always recycling and re-using.  They have always kept a compost bin both in the house and the garden and share plants and seedlings, grow their own vegetables, and only buy local plants. They have always grown flowers "to keep bees happy and butterflies fluttering". What they are learning now is matching lumens with watts, using solar instead of mains power and electricity instead of petrol. The guesthouse has solar thermal heating and there's an electric car and bike charging station.

Muiread and Ciaran tell us they are also looking to develop a nature diary to build up a picture of local bio-diversity and want to encourage guests to assist in logging in sightings in and around Rhedyn and also the local areas. Photos would be a fabulous by-product.

How to get there
The closest train station is less than 10 minutes’ drive away at Cilmeri station, a request stop of the stunning Heart of Wales line. Ciaran and Muiread are happy to pick up and drop off guests there.

Top tip
Great for a small group gathering, rent all three rooms together with family or friends and book in for a celebratory meal around the dining table. The general house party atmosphere created by Muiread and Ciaran mean the living room, with its open fireplace and oversized sofas, also really lends itself to convivial evenings, pre- and post-dinner.

Verdict
There’s much more to this bucolic corner of Wales than first meets the eye. Stay here and you’ll benefit from Muiread and Ciaran’s evalngelical passion for – and knowledge about – the local area as well as some very comfortable hospitality.

>> For contact details and booking, see our full listing of Rhedyn Guesthouse.

Disclosure

Blogs posts categorised as 'Reviews' have been written with the support of one or more of the following: accommodation owner, activity provider, operator, equipment supplier, tourist board, protected landscape authority or other destination-focussed authority. The reviewer retains full editorial control of the work, which has been written in the reviewer's own words based on their experience of the accommodation, activity, equipment or destination.

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