The beautiful coastal town of Whitby is by far one of our favourite places in Yorkshire. With its pretty harbour, sandy beaches and fascinating history, it’s easy to see why people flock here in the thousands each year.
If you’re opting to holiday in the UK this year then Whitby has plenty to offer. It’s packed with quirky independent shops, excellent restaurants, traditional pubs, and the local attractions offer a great insight into the town’s famous past residents.
There are plenty of great hotels and bed and breakfasts in the area, but if you’re planning a longer break or prefer to cater for yourself, then a holiday cottage is the ideal option. You’ll find no shortage of quaint little cottages lining the cobbled streets of Whitby and they all offer something a little different. However, we wanted to let you know about one particular cottage that we think ticks every box.
Last week, we were lucky enough to spend a week at Columbo Cottage and we couldn’t fault a thing. Columbo is one of three new builds, owned by Heather and Ian Vitty of Vitty’s Cottages. The properties were built on the site of Whitby’s old police station and courthouse, which was erected in 1877 and demolished 46 years ago. When Ian and Heather bought the land, it was being used as a carpark so they deemed it to be the ideal location for three new holiday properties with a central location and onsite parking. They weren’t wrong either! The cottages are just a short stroll away from the harbour and main attractions.
As they were built on the site of the former police station, the Vittys decided to name their new properties Columbo, Sherlock and Morse. Sherlock is a slightly bigger property which was extended to include a games room and cinema area, but Morse and Columbo (where we stayed) are both very similar in size and layout.
When you first enter Columbo Cottage, you’ll find yourself in a bright hallway facing the carpeted stairs. To your left, you’ll find a space to store shoes and hang coats. To the right, is the door to the beautifully decorated open plan living area and kitchen. With solid wood floors, modern decor and plenty of comfortable seating, it’s certainly the area where you will spend most of your time. There’s also a downstairs toilet which we found really handy, having a five-year-old son who only remembers he needs to go at the very last minute!
The kitchen area has dining space for 6, top quality appliances and is stocked with everything you could need for preparing a tasty home-cooked meal. They have even provided a coffee machine with complimentary pods, a Nutriblend, a slow cooker, tin foil and cling film, tupperware, dishwasher tablets and washing up liquid. The coffee, tea and sugar jars are all filled before you arrive and you’ll find milk in the fridge and plenty of ice in the freezer.
In the adjoining utility area, you’ll also find a cupboard next to the washer/dryer which is packed with outdoor dining equipment and cool bag for those picnics on the beach or brunches on the small outdoor patio to the rear. If that isn’t enough to convince you of their exceptional standard of hospitality, then the welcome pack provided sure will! We were greeted with a wooden crate packed with goodies such as crisps, chocolate, local biscuits, bottles of water and a bottle of bubbly!
Ian and Heather really have thought of everything. The property itself is immaculate throughout and most would be satisfied with that alone. However, the little extras they have thrown in really made our stay that little bit more special. Local guides, books and games for children and a selection of DVDs can all be found in the living area so there’s plenty to keep you entertained if you can’t find anything to watch on the smart TV provided.
There are three comfortable bedrooms at Columbo cottage – 2 doubles and 1 twin. Each is tastefully decorated with plain walls, pretty soft furnishings and good quality furniture. You’ll find two of the bedrooms on the first floor. The twin room is right next to the main house bathroom and the first floor double is ensuite. Go up another flight of stairs and you’ll find the main bedroom which covers the entire top floor. This stunning bedroom is ensuite with a double shower and, as you would expect, it’s really spacious. It also offers superb views across the harbour towards the famous abbey ruins.
Ian and Heather are experienced holiday property owners so it’s no wonder they have provided everything you could possibly think of to make your stay in Whitby as comfortable as possible. They bought their very first holiday let back in 2011 and are now the proud owners of 8 properties in Whitby and 1 in nearby Sandsend. They’ve really put their heart and soul into these new properties and, as they are local, are always on hand should you need anything. A friendly, approachable couple with a passion for hospitality and a genuine love of Whitby, they make the perfect hosts. They’ve been residents of the town for a number of years but still thoroughly enjoy all it has to offer.
We asked Heather what she would do if she only had one day to spend in Whitby:
” I would definitely walk up Church Street to look in the shops before climbing the 199 steps up to look around St Mary’s Church and Whitby Brewery. From up this end, I would jump on the yellow tour bus to see all the wonderful sights before hopping off at West Cliff for a game of crazy golf at Arnold Palmer’s. I would then head down the cliff and take a stroll along the beach towards the town centre where I’d end the day with fish & chips from Trenchers or Fisherman’s Wife.”
A huge thank you to Ian and Heather Vitty of Vitty’s Cottages for providing us with the perfect base whilst we explored one of Yorkshire’s most beautiful tourist destinations. See you next year!