Neo Palladian Splendour in a Rural Setting
Just under five miles southwest of beautiful Tiptree is the little village of Great Totham near the Blackwater estuary. With a village green, primary school, two pubs and a Grade II listed thirteenth century parish church, it is located midway between Colchester and Chelmsford and is close to the A12. Trains into London Liverpool Street run from nearby Witham and Hatfield Peverel making this the ideal location for those who need to work in London.
Standing in magnificent landscaped parkland of around 2.5 acres is this Italian-style villa built in the neo-Palladian Italianate style. With manicured lawns, an ornate terrazzo and an imposing portico on the front of the house, it is absolutely breath-taking. The present owners began building it to their own very high standards in 2011 and it is now a spacious home on three levels, with additional accommodation for guests and staff and a sumptuous and luxurious interior. The front door opens into the stunning galleried entrance hall, floored in black granite as is most of the house. The underfloor heating throughout is powered by ground source heat pumps, making the property very economical to run, and in addition, a Central Vac system has been installed throughout the property. The owners based the architecture and interior of their lovely home on Italian design and it shows. The eye-catching cantilevered staircase features hand-made spindles fashioned from Swarovski crystals, giving an incredible air of luxury to the house and reflecting from the glossy black granite. A wall of antique mirrored glass to the right of the curving staircase adds to the magnificent splendour of this remarkable entrance hall and each room is lit with a shimmering chandelier.
Five magnificent reception rooms lead from the sumptuous hallway, all accessed via double doors, adding to the sense of Palladian splendour. The beautiful triple aspect library with its light oak fitted furniture is the perfect home office and has a warm, welcoming feel. Like all the rooms, it has large windows and is finished to a very high standard. The morning room, looking out over the beautiful lawns, has a cosy feel with handmade wallpaper and warm gold curtains while the dual aspect White Drawing Room with its marble fireplace and featuring beautiful hand-made curtains and pelmets (a style feature throughout the house) is the perfect place to entertain, enjoy a coffee with friends or simply relax with a good book. The curved sitting room at the back of the house is the main reception room with three sets of double doors leading out to the garden. Flooded with natural light and sumptuously decorated, it is a stunning room featuring an antique glass wall, ideal for formal entertaining and family time. The beautiful dining room with a pair of double doors at each end is the perfect place for formal or informal dining with plenty of room for a large dining room table and chairs. Next door is the chef’s kitchen/utility room, fully fitted up and ideal for catered events. This is just one example of the incredible level of detail used by the owners to construct their dream home.
To the right of the house is the main kitchen, handmade and bespoke, with its reflective black granite floor, island, hand-made white cabinetry including antique mirrored glass-fronted cupboards, black granite worktops and with integrated appliances, mostly by Miele. A central mirrored antique glass pillar adds to the reflective light in this very large space along with bespoke glass French doors lead out on to the terrace, which when opened, bring the outside in. There is plenty of room for informal dining, kitchen suppers and family events in this remarkable kitchen which has been fitted out to the very highest standard. Whether enjoying a relaxed family meal, cooking for friends or enjoying a cocktail party with canapes on a warm summer evening, this beautiful kitchen opening out on to the immaculate terrazzo is the perfect place for cooking and sharing special time. Two stunning cloakrooms sit on either side of the hallway completing the ground floor accommodation.
The magnificent granite staircase curves sinuously up to the vast first floor landing from which radiate seven bedrooms, six with en suite bathrooms and five with bespoke walk-in closets/dressing rooms. The principal bedroom and one other benefit from a pair of French doors out on to two of the three balconies. The owners designed the first floor with an eye to comfort, space and sumptuous furnishings. There is more than enough room for any family configuration plus plenty of space for guests. The principal bedroom is particularly opulent, with a set of double doors opening out on to the magnificent balcony above the portico and an en suite bathroom with a freestanding slipper bath with antique glass-fronted his and hers basins and more than enough room for a chaise longue in the truly decadent eighteenth century style. With its centrally located bath and views out over the parkland, this room truly has the air of an aristocratic mansion. Each bedroom has been lovingly designed and decorated with feature walls, high quality carpet and curtains and pelmets. All are extremely generous in size and the six en suite bathrooms are a mix of shower rooms, four-piece bathrooms and bathrooms, all with the very highest quality fittings and decoration. Each walk-in closet is completely unique and bespoke, providing more than enough space for even the most ambitious wardrobe.
The staircase rises to the third floor which has been designed as a remarkable entertaining space with a fully fitted New York bar, solid oak flooring, recessed halogen ceiling lights, a kitchen and shower room with skylight. This part of the house could easily be a cinema room, gym, games room or simply a wonderful space to bring friends and family to relax.
The owners have thought of everything with a two-storey pool house and a one-storey annexe in the grounds, as well as a full sized swimming pool with diving board heated electrically and tennis courts. The pool house has an en suite double bedroom and lounge plus dressing room, while the annexe has a sitting room, kitchen and en suite bedroom. There is also a detached garage with enough room for four cars.
The gardens, laid out in the classic eighteenth century style of parkland, lawns and flower beds, are simply ideal for any occasion. Garden parties, informal barbecues, children’s parties, celebrations, even a family wedding reception – all can easily be accommodated in these stunning grounds with their wonderful variety of planting and mature trees giving canopied shade and texture.
Lavishly designed with bespoke Italian-style finish throughout, this magnificent mansion in secluded parkland with guest and staff accommodation, pool, tennis courts and stone terracing is quite possibly one of the most unique houses in England. With excellent transport links and local amenities, truly, it has to be seen to be believed.