Here, we're catching up with the host of our Cotswold home called 'The Bronze Knight' to discover more about its unique interiors, as well as to find out where to find the best hidden gems around the local area.
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Tell us a bit about yourself and your Plum Home.
My name is Steven and I'm a Property Developer in London. 'The Bronze Knight' is a Grade 1 listed barn conversion in the grounds of a Tudor Manor House ('The Silver Knight') situated in the Northern Cotswolds near Stow On The Wold & Cheltenham.
What would you say is your home's superpower/stand-out feature?
The genuine Arts & Crafts furniture mixed in with 20th century fine art. No room feels the same so the house is really unique.
How would you describe your interior style?
My wife and I are passionate collectors and I am always on the look out for interesting antiques of all eras so we adapt our style to the architectural environment.
What was your biggest inspiration behind designing the home?
I love mixing the old with new which is really apparent in the barn and seems to work. For example, I placed a genuine Napoleonic safe in the kitchen which acts as a cocktail / drinks cabinet and we have an amazing hyper realist sculpture by Marc Sijan of a cleaner placed on the landing which certainly creates a talking point. I love to add humour and elements of surprise for my guests.
What do you think makes a house a home?
It has to be loved ones around you especially children. My granddaughter loves coming to stay at the house and we have some fantastic memories as a family here when my own children were growing up.
Do you have a favourite room, and why?
It has to be the gold bedroom. It has so many of the original features of the original barn; exposed brushed brick work, high ceilings and gables. I am fascinated by architecture.
What about a favourite piece of furniture?
I collect a lot of unusual pieces and enjoy finding homes for them but the working 2nd World War Hurricane ejector seat I bought from an antique dealer in Chelsea and the Ami Continental 1956 juke box full of 1960s singles would be top of my list. I love anything fun and quirky.
What is the best time of day to enjoy in the home?
Sun setting over the swimming pool which I managed to enjoy for the first time last year when we finished the pool just in time for the summer guests. It's a magical spot and gets the sun right up until 9.30 in the evening.
Is there an ideal way to relax in the home?
With a glass of rosé in the hot tub!
Best thing you can walk to from your home?
It has to be Temple Guiting Pantry in the village which we bought 6 years ago and renovated to create a lovely destination restaurant / cafe and homewares shop. It's also a great place to end a circular walk that takes in our wonderful surrounding countryside over part of the beautiful Winchcombe Way.
Do you have a favourite local produce store/independent shop in the neighbourhood?
Again, I am biased but our Pantry in the village is the perfect destination Cotswold stop with its great mix of hand-picked homewares and gifts. Our talented chef, James Moreton offers a brilliant menu using the best local food suppliers like Simon Weaver Organic Cheese, Jesse’s meats in Cirencester and coffee from Fire & Flow in Cheltenham.
What about a favourite restaurant or wine bar nearby?
The Fox at Oddington is a long-standing favourite. It’s relaxed, has a great pub feel with excellent food. I know I will always come away satisfied!
2020 was the year of the staycation: did you do any? And if so, where did you go?
I managed to squeeze in a short stay at the barn to enjoy our new pool we opened this summer although it proved very popular so I only got a few days!