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Superb spacious medieval house in Rye



Updated: 10-Oct-2016
6 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, sleeps a maximum of 14

Robin Hill is a lovely and surprisingly spacious 15th century house, famous for having one of England's finest timbered and straw plastered bedrooms, in one of Britain's most photographed streets and opposite the world-renowned Mermaid Inn. It is beautifully furnished, very well-equipped and can easily and comfortably accommodate 12 guests. The large, quiet and secluded garden is shaded by a wonderful mulberry tree. At the foot of the cobbled street yachts and pleasure craft lie moored alongside medieval warehouses full of bustling antique shops. Rye delights the eye with its wealth of old buildings, its church and tower. Restaurants, pubs and cafes abound and offer excellent food within easy walking distance of the house. Rye Bay plaice and scallops are provided by the picturesque local fishing fleet.

Description of the house: This delightful house displays its original beams, high ceilings and rooms full of character and surprise. The upper living room is especially light and sunny, contains a bar and projects into a secluded garden complete with a large mulberry tree set against a panorama of ancient rooftops. The lower living room with its inglenook fireplace looks out onto the famous cobblestone street and the magic of Rye. One bedroom still has its groove for the original medieval wooden shutters. The whole house testifies to a bygone era and has been dated to 1480. Within this medieval setting a fascinating variety of Asian artefacts has been imaginatively displayed ranging from an antique rickshaw to Chinese ancestral doors.

Location and town of Rye: Situated 1.5 miles from the open sea and nature reserves, Rye is within easy reach of Brussels, Paris and London. Canterbury is only one hour away by car. Rye is probably the most complete example of a medieval town in Britain and crowns a hill originally surrounded by the sea. Its 12th century church, fortified tower, Landgate and ancient wall are all within easy walking distance of the house and bear testimony to its history as a Cinque Port. Robin Hill was the origin of the ballad 'There's an old-fashioned house in an old-fashioned street' and formed the basis and front cover design of Beatrix Potter's 'Tale of the Faithful Dove.' Mabel Lucy Atwell lived, wrote and illustrated here and one of the publisher-owner's many literary guests, E.F Benson, the novelist famous for his creation of 'Mapp and Lucia,' gave the house its name - 'Robin Hill'.

Leisure facilities: Three miles beyond Rye are Camber Sands, ideal for children, and Winchelsea, which is a lovely example of medieval town planning. Rye has good sporting and sailing facilities, splendid walks and excursions into the smugglers' paradise of Romney Marsh and the delights of rural Sussex and Kent. A wildlife bird sanctuary stretches from Rye Harbour to Fairlight. Rye also boasts some excellent eating houses. We can recommend The Fish Cafe, The Union Steakhouse, Fletcher's House, The Gandhi Tandoori, The Globe Inn, The Hope Anchor, The Lemon Grass, The Mermaid Inn bar, Simply Italian. There are many other possibilities from among the numerous cafes and pubs in Rye.

A map and further information about Rye can be obtained from www.rye-tourism.co.uk

More Details
  • Sleeps 14
  • 7 Bedrooms
  • 2 Bathrooms, 1 Separate Toilet
  • Parking
  • Garden
  • Barbecue
  • Pets considered
  • Internet
  • Dish washer
  • Washing machine
  • Towels provided
  • Linens provided
  • Accept Credit Cards
  • Bookable online

Top Traveller Review

About the Owner

We have lived for many years in Kuala Lumpur and Hong Kong. Asia has proved a fascinating destination for many of our travels.

Call Owner
Speaks English

Guestbook comments from the owner

'Once again the reality far exceeds the expectation and anticipation! This is a truly wonderful house in a wonderful setting'. 'This house is delightful...it became a talking and visiting point for our friends and family and we delighted in taking ownership for 3 days'. 'Thank you for sharing this wonderful house with all of us'. 'A beautiful house in a beautiful setting'. 'Another wonderful fortnight... We love the house and the lovely town of Rye'. 'I have just turned 30 and I can't imagine a better place to spend my birthday weekend'. 'We enjoyed our stay in Rye very much which was enhanced by being able to share your warm and comfortable home'. 'We have enjoyed a wonderful stay here in this delightful house with its fusion of olde England and the spirit of Chinese and eastern artefacts. So much to discover every day. Such harmony. Our family party of 3 generations - English, American, Swedish and Italian - celebrated a 30th wedding anniversary. A short but memorable week.'
Nov 2007
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16 Reviews

based on 16 holidaymaker reviews


Our ancestral journey to Robin Hill

  • 5 of 5

Our family was thrilled to be able to stay in Robin Hill recently to celebrate a 70th birthday,particularly thrilled as it was the house where my bargeman Great grandfather was born in 1851, the house no doubt looking very different to what it does today. We really appreciated the art and oriental artefacts & we loved being in the centre of Rye and listening to all the tourists passing by. We thought ourselves very lucky to be staying there- we had great weather and a memorable holiday.

Thank you.

  • Review Submitted: Sep 30, 2016
  • Date of Stay: Aug 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
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Memorable stay in this unique house in Rye

  • 5 of 5

We have been staying at Robin Hill for many years and this trip was as memorable as any of our previous visits. We were celebrating our Parents' 60th Wedding Anniversary and had 11 family members in total. Everyone was very comfortable and had space to escape if needed. The house and its decoration are unique. A real step back into old England, via Asia. The location cannot be beaten, right there on picturesque Mermaid St. Thank you to the owners for their amazing hospitality. We look forward to returning again to Robin Hill.

  • Review Submitted: Sep 27, 2016
  • Date of Stay: Aug 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
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Beautiful house in ideal location

  • 5 of 5

We had a total of 10 in our party, and all were comfortably accommodated. It was the first time out of the USA for six of our party, and to be able to sample life in England from such a location was a truly memorable experience. The location was ideal for day trips to London, Canterbury, Brighton, and also for the Eurostar to Paris.

In addition, the large, pretty garden proved to be ideal for entertaining other friends and family.

The house is so charming and decorated with such interesting pieces. It will be a talking point and a strong memory for us for many years to come.

  • Review Submitted: Aug 3, 2015
  • Date of Stay: Jun 2015
  • Source: Owners Direct, from HomeAway
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Everything you could want and more!

  • 5 of 5

My friends and I have just returned from another wonderful weekend at Robin Hill - we think it might be our fourth visit but we have lost count! It's the ideal place for a relaxing weekend; comfortable, spacious, quirky (we love all the Chinese artefacts) and such a magical setting in Mermaid Street. We have already booked a return visit in November!

  • Review Submitted: Mar 24, 2015
  • Date of Stay: Mar 2015
  • Source: HomeAway
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dream family holiday cottage

  • 5 of 5

our family of three generations ,12 , stayed for one great week in this beautifully presented home, the history of the home and it,s décor enchanced all from 6 year olds to 60,s. Daily family needs (washing/cooking/entertainment)were fully catered for. The location cannot be any better , the town and it's friendly people completed an experience we will not forget.

Ray andDelma Clark



  • Review Submitted: Nov 6, 2014
  • Date of Stay: Oct 2014
  • Source: HomeAway
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It was wonderful and just as advertised.

  • 5 of 5

The home was beautiful and more than adequately furnished for every need. We LOVED our stay. The people and town of Rye were friendly and beyond our expectations.

  • Review Submitted: Aug 2, 2014
  • Date of Stay: Jul 2014
  • Source: HomeAway
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From the Owner

This Grade 2 listed house has been a constant source of interest and delight. We continue to learn about former residents - back to 1680 so far - and to welcome friends and family to a building which we feel privileged to occupy for a short time in its long history. We have much pleasure in inviting you to share this experience with us.

Activity and Interests

Nearest Airport : London Gatwick at 64 Kilometres Nearest Ferry : Folkestone at 32 Kilometres Nearest Train : Rye at 0.5 Kilometres Nearest Motorway : Ashford at 32 Kilometres Nearest Beach : at 2 Miles Car: not necessary

Rye is located between Hastings and Folkestone and is a mile and a half from the coast. From London Rye can be reached either via M20/A2070/A259 through Ashford or via M25/A21/A268 through Hawkhurst. Historically known as '1066 country' the surrounding area provides the visitor with an abundance of castles, abbeys, fortresses, National Trust gardens and houses, and museums. The coastal area is noted for its flora and fauna including a wildlife bird sanctuary: marshland stretches eastwards, a haven for smugglers in bygone days, and the haunting seascape of Dungeness is a habitat for a wide variety of unusual plants and dominated by two lighthouses; to the west stretch the unspoilt beach of Winchelsea and the cliffs of Fairlight Country Park.


Rental rates

Convert Currency
Rental Period Minimum Price Additional Nights Weekend Night Weekly Monthly Event Price
7 Jan 2017 - 21 Dec 2017
2 night minimum stay
for 2 nights
Notes: Rates are based on 8 guests; add £50 per night, per additional guest
Christmas & New Year
22 Dec 2017 - 5 Jan 2018
7 night minimum stay
for 7 nights
My Standard Rate
7 night minimum stay
for 7 nights

Additional pricing information

Fees No additional mandatory fees

Weekend rate GBP 380 per night for up to 8 guests and GBP 47.5 per night for each extra guest. Minimum 2 nights.
7 Jan 2014 - 20 Dec 2014 GBP1600
20 Dec 2014 - 4 Jan 2015 GBP1800

Owner's Cancellation Policy

Please ask the owner or check their rental agreement when booking the property.
Enter dates for accurate pricing
Total amount
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Updated: 10-Oct-2016
Available arrival


From the Owner

A truly medieval environment in the very special town of Rye. A home from home with all the comforts. An excellent range of small shops for gifts to suit a vast range of tastes: pottery, paintings, books old and new, leather, antiques of every description, glass, specialist kitchen ware, furniture.

Property Type

  • house


  • Historic
  • Tourist Attractions


  • Activities Guide
  • Basic Soaps
  • Garage
  • Hair Dryer
  • Heating
  • Internet
  • Iron & Board
  • Laundry Soap
  • Linens Provided
  • Local Activities Guide
  • Local Maps
  • Local Restaurant Guide
  • Sofa Bed
  • Toilet Paper
  • Towels Provided
  • Tumble Dryer
  • Washing Machine
  • Wireless Internet


  • 4 Ring Stove
  • Blender
  • Coffee Grinder
  • Cooking Utensils
  • Dishwasher
  • Freezer
  • Grill
  • Microwave
  • Mini Refrigerator
  • Oven ...
  • Refrigerator
  • Hob ...
  • Toaster


  • Child's Highchair
  • Dining Room


  • Audio Tape Player
  • Books
  • Books - Fiction / Non-fiction
  • Books for Kids
  • CD Player
  • DVD Player
  • Music Library
  • Radio
  • Stereo
  • Television
  • Video Player
  • Video Library


  • children welcome
  • pets considered
  • not suitable for elderly or infirm
  • wheelchair inaccessible

Location Type

  • near the sea
  • town


  • bay
  • churches
  • cinemas
  • library
  • museums
  • playground
  • restaurants
  • ruins
  • winery tours
  • zoo

Leisure Activities

  • beachcombing
  • bird watching
  • eco tourism
  • horse riding
  • scenic drives
  • sight seeing
  • walking

Local Services & Businesses

  • ATM/bank
  • fitness centre
  • groceries
  • massage therapist
  • medical services

Sports & Adventure Activities

  • cycling
  • fishing
  • fly fishing
  • golf
  • sailing
  • swimming
  • tennis

Floor Area

  • 325 m²


  • Bathroom - Toilet, Bath (no shower)
  • Bathroom - Toilet
  • Bathroom - Toilet, Shower Enclosure, Bidet
  • The first floor bathroom contains a bath, a shower attachment for hair washing, a wash basin and a toilet. There is also a separate first floor toilet. On the ground floor there is a shower room with a bidet, a wash basin and a toilet.


  • 7 Bedrooms, Sleeps 14
  • Bedroom Queen - 1 Large Double Bed
  • Bedroom Queen - 1 Large Double Bed
  • Bedroom Double - 1 Double Bed
  • 1/F lounge bedroom - 1 Sofa bed/Futon
  • Bedroom Single - 1 Single Bed
  • Bedroom 2/F - 1 Double Bed, 1 Single Bed
  • Bedroom 7 gallery - 2 Single Bed
  • On 1/F: 2 queen size doubles in very spacious rooms, 1 double, 1 spacious single, On 2/F: 1 large room with 1 double and 1 single bed, 1 sleeping gallery with 2 chair-beds. On G/F: sofa double bed in lounge


  • Beach Towels
  • Garden
  • Barbecue
  • 12 garden chairs


  • Self-catering


  • The bar in the 1/F lounge incorporates a lift-up counter hiding a wash basin. The single 1/F bedroom also has its own wash basin. The 2/F family room contains 1 double and 1 single bed. There are also two single fold-out chair beds on 2/F in a library/lobby at the top of the stairs, although this is not entirely private. G/F shower room includes a toilet. 1/F bathroom includes a toilet. There is also a separate 1/F toilet. The kitchen is large, extremely well equipped and has a mahogany table seating 8 people easily. The electric cooker has a double oven and 4 ceramic hobs. The dining room is also spacious seating 10 people at its handsome teak wood table. The house is on a hill. Shops and historic attractions are within 3 minutes' walking distance.

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