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One of the UK’s original glamping businesses reveals eight…
The owners of Scaldersitch Farm in the Peak District, one of the country’s original and longest standing glamping businesses, have shared the eight key industry trends that they have noticed over the past 12 years in time for World Camping Day on 29 June.
Scaldersitch Farm’s owners, Catherine and Ian Hine, founded their glamping business in 2011 when glamping and boutique camping was still in its infancy. They started with Secret Cloud House Holidays, in the Staffordshire Moorlands, before adding the Scaldersitch Farm site in 2015. Since then, the industry has grown considerably, with booking platforms like Canopy & Stars reporting that revenue has doubled since pre-pandemic levels.
Over the past 12 years, Catherine and Ian have seen some significant changes in the sites available and what consumers are expecting from their experiences.
1) Personalised luxury. Visitors want unique, memorable stays that completely meet their needs. From on-site wellness treatments to candle-lit dinners and guided walking tours, the experiences at glamping sites have increased and diversified since the early days.
2) Higher standards. Outstanding luxury finishes have become more usual in recent years. Soft lighting, unique decorative details, a fridge stocked with local, high-end ingredients for breakfast and luxuries such as a pre-heated hot tub are becoming more sought after.
3) Glamping weddings. There has been a very clear trend towards boutique, outdoor weddings largely driven by smaller budgets, and a growing desire amongst couples in their 20s and 30s to have more rural, festival-themed celebrations, with a tight group of guests.
4) Increase in corporate events. Particularly since the pandemic, companies have started favouring smaller, more focused events instead of large-scale conferences. There has been a noticeable uptick in all-site glamping bookings with wellness activities, brainstorming sessions or workshops incorporated.
5) Some variation in quality. With the increase in sites, Scaldersitch Farm has seen much more variation in quality. The term can mean anything from a pre-pitched tent with pillows, to a 5* luxury yurt with all the trimmings. Sometimes consumers don’t have a clear idea of how luxurious a site is until they arrive, which can result in disappointment.
6) Sustainability. Growing concern for the environment means that customers are taking more notice of how eco-friendly glamping sites are, and also want to see locally grown and created products available in things like breakfast hampers and toiletries.
7) Beyond summer. The glamping season has gradually expanded to cover other seasons, including winter. With the top-end sites offering hot tubs, wood-burners, and other comforts, customers can enjoy a cosy escape yet still be in the middle of the countryside.
8) Not just canvas tents. Glamping has moved beyond tents over the past eight years and now encompasses tipis, yurts, pods, treehouses, and other outdoor structures as well.
“We founded Scaldersitch Farm when we came across a run-down caravan site on the Staffordshire border and knew that it could be turned into something very special,” explains Catherine. “Glamping was a new concept at that point, barely anyone was doing it and we were one of the very first sites in the Peak District.
“A lot has changed since we started. Glamping has started to mature and is being embraced by increasing numbers of people, particularly since the pandemic prompted a move towards local, more nature-based travel. Some of the changes within the industry have been positive, such as the extension of the glamping season. It’s fantastic to see people enjoying our beautiful outdoor spaces in autumn and winter, along with the more traditional warmer months.”
However, Catherine, who worked within the luxury hotel industry for several years before entering the glamping market, points out that there have been some downsides to the boom, which means that research is vital before booking accommodation.
“New glamping sites are popping up all the time, and there is now a much more noticeable variation in quality. On top of that, the lack of a formal industry grading standard means that sites can claim to offer glamping accommodation but not actually be very luxurious at all,” says Catherine.
“This is quite different to the luxury hotel industry, which has nationally accredited star rating systems – and can put people off glamping as a whole, which obviously isn’t great for those of us that have very high standards. Our advice would be to research your site thoroughly and check things like online reviews, and social media channels before booking. There are some wonderful options out there but the huge increase in sites over the past few years means that it can be difficult to know which one to go with.”
Founded in 2016, Scaldersitch Farm is set in some of the Peak District’s most stunning countryside, with the wide open skies making it ideal for star-gazing and sunrise watching. It is surrounded by footpaths and cycle trails, and close to Hartington Village, famous for its cheese, and home to a range of shops, pubs and tea rooms. It is also convenient to numerous other Peak District attractions, such as the Tissington Trail, Dovedale stepping stones, Arbor Low, Buxton, and Bakewell.
Every last detail has been considered in the five award-winning, luxury yurts and tipis at Scaldersitch Farm. From the Scandinavian hot tubs, which are heated to the perfect temperature prior to arrival; to the fridge that is stocked with premium breakfast produce; super king beds; private outside seating area; and beautiful finishing touches, such as homegrown, freshly picked flowers, it is the ultimate special setting for a getaway with friends or family.
For more information on Scaldersitch Farm, visit scaldersitchfarm.co.uk.
Note to editors: High-res images available on request.
Jennifer Bell, Feather & Fern PR, on behalf of Scaldersitch Farm.
Phone: 07955 031 986
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