Country houses for sale

The best country houses for entertaining

Surrey, £2 million

The Old Farmhouse,
4 bedrooms, Aga, barns, 19 acres
Hamptons International (01883 345255)

This Grade II-listed Wealden Hall house boasts an appropriately named ‘Christmas barn’-a characterful space for a gathering. The house has come to the market for the first time in nearly 50 years and it dates from about 1470, with many original features including inglenook fireplaces, oak bressumer beams and a crown post.

£1.8 million
Northborough Manor,
4 bedrooms, four-bedroom gatehouse,
1.15 acres
Smiths Gore (01780 484696)

The great hall in this Grade I-listed manor house has hosted many formal gatherings over the years. It’s a light room thanks to the vast stone-mullion windows

Warwickshire/Worcestershire borders,
£1.95 million
Cookhill, Alcester
6 bedrooms, games room, outbuildings,
15.6 acres
Knight Frank (01789 297735)

The former chapel of this house, which is attached to the side, would make a perfect party room with floor-to-ceiling leaded windows overlooking the garden. Additionally, there’s a large dining room and plenty of attic space that could be turned into more bedrooms.

Hampshire, £8.5 million
Drayton House, East Meon
7 bedrooms, tennis court,
pool, cottage
Strutt & Parker (020-7629 7282)

There’s no excuse for being antisocial at this beautifully renovated house. The open-plan layout of many of the rooms means that they could all be used for a party space and the barnlike dining hall would make a beautiful room for Christmas lunch. One of the bedrooms has two bunk beds for young children and teenagers could be housed in the poolroom bedroom.

Cheshire, £1.75 million
Dairy House Farm, Brereton Park
6 bedrooms, Aga, stable block, 7 acres Jackson-Stops & Staff (01625 540340)

The sitting and drawing rooms of this house are interconnected, providing a large space for entertaining that has wide-boarded oak floors, a wood-burning stove, beams and French windows leading to the front gardens

Hampshire, £3.95 million
Ibthorpe Manor Farm,
7 bedrooms, three-bedroom cottage,
party barn, 15 acres
Savills (020-7409 8823)

This Grade II-listed house in one of Hampshire’s prettiest villages comes with a first-class party barn. Also listed Grade II, it has a carpeted entertaining area, a dancefloor, a bar with a copper top and spot lighting in the beams. It can comfortably seat 100 for dinner or up to 200 for drinks and dancing.

Somerset, £2.495 million
Rood Farm, Butleigh
5 bedrooms, pool, barn, 24 acres
Chesterton Humberts (020-7594 4746)

The heart of this extended farmhouse lies in the kitchen/breakfast room, which is large and bright and has a triple aspect over the garden. The room measures the length of the house so there’s plenty of space to host a noisy Christmas lunch.

Hampshire, £2.975 million
Yew Trees, Penton Mewsey
6 bedrooms, Aga, garage/office, 4.4 acres
Carter Jonas (01962 842742)

The benefit of a newly built country house is that the layout is immediately suited to the needs of a modern-day family: Yew Trees’ large eat-in kitchen takes centre stage on the ground floor and more formal entertaining space is found in the drawing room and library, which have a dual aspect over the gardens.

Buckinghamshire, £2.5 million
Sandfords, Chalfont St Giles
5 bedrooms, orangery, coach house, 0.5 acre
Winkworth (01494 677978)

A large ‘Smallbone inspired’ kitchen leads into the pretty orangery in this Queen Anne house-a perfect space for an informal gathering, or you could use the adjoining sitting and dining rooms. The coach house could be converted into ancillary accommodation, subject to the usual planning consents.

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