The Coalhouse Restaurant- new at Oxwich Beach
Opened earlier this year and owned by Penrice Estate is the Coalhouse Restaurant in Oxwich Bay on the Gower Peninsula, just ten miles from Swansea. This nineteenth century building has been brought back to life as a restaurant and bar. The restaurant is in the unique position of being literally on the beach. There are panoramic coastal views unparalleled in Wales, across Oxwich and Three Cliffs Bay, both from inside the building and from the large terrace facing the sea.
The building's interior has been designed in keeping with its beach location and industrial heritage by Susie Atkinson, a highly acclaimed designer.
The restaurant sits up to seventy, and also has a large terrace for fifty facing the sea, perfect for outside dining or enjoying a cool glass of sauvignon blanc and watching the world sail by.
Our head chef, Ian Bennett, grew up nearby in South Gower and worked in the Drangways restaurant in Swansea before training with the Roux Brothers in the Waterside Inn in Bray. He then worked in London before long stints at the Kirroughtree House hotel in Scotland as well as a period working in the world famous Walnut Tree near Abergavenny. In 2001, he and his wife, Jay, took on the Welcome to Town in Llanrhidian in North Gower which they transformed into one of South Wales's top restaurants which was highly rated in both the Michelin and Good Food Guides.
As part of his team at the Coalhouse, Ian has working with him Jake Keward, another chef from the Swansea area who has trained at restaurants such as the Lords of the Manor in the Cotswolds.
Just click on the links on the left of the page to visit our new restaurant The Coalhouse at Oxwich Beach and see the sample menu on offer.
The restaurant is also available for wedding receptions and Christmas parties plus New Years Eve special menu- please see the website at the Coalhouse for more details and opening times.
Castles of Gower
If you have never visited Gower before you will be surprised at how many castles we have in such a small area. Obviously we have our own Norman Castle ruins here at Penrice and then there is Oxwich Castle which is open to the public and Weobley Castle a 15th century fortified manor house over on the North side of Gower near Llanrhidian overlooking the salt marshes and Loughor. Pennard Castle's situation is dramatic and beautiful. It is perched on the edge of the valley of the Pennard Pill, with a sheer drop below to the north and west. From it there is a sweeping view out towards Three Cliffs Bay, and across the valley to Penmaen Burrows. It was a perfect position for a castle, except for one thing which cannot have been foreseen when it was built: it was vulnerable to sand blow. By the end of the 14th century sand encroachment had led to its abandonment. Or why not visit Oystermouth Castle in Mumbles standing on a small hill with a magnificent view over Swansea Bay in the resort town of Mumbles,the earliest stone building of the castle, the keep, dates from the 12th century. All are open to the public except Penrice which is only open to Penrice Cottage visitors.
Further afield is Kidwelly Castle which is west of Llanelli and well worth a visit. Kidwelly is a mighty and imposing monument of Norman power. It is also a beautiful example of castle development, as the castle was dramatically altered on a number of occasions to conform to the latest thinking in military science.
Things to See & Do
A good day out for children of all ages can be had at the Wetlands Centre in Loughor on the way to Llanelli. Set in a 450 acre mosaic of lakes, pool and lagoons created on the scenic Burry Inlet, Llanelli Wetland Centre is home to many hundreds of wild and resident species. Explore the site by bicycle or, in the warmer months, take a jungle explorer-style tour by canoe. Water vole city and the Millennium discovery centre are also unmissable attractions. For more information go to www.wwt.org.uk
Another really good day out is at the St Fagan Museum of Welsh Life just outside Cardiff. Its free entry for everybody but make sure you allow yourself the whole day as there is so much to see and do there for children and adults of all ages.Set in a mixture of beautiful open grounds and ancient woodland, the Museum has re-erected over 40 buildings that include Iron Age roundhouses, farms and a school-room to show you how Welsh families have lived, worked and played through the ages. Meet friendly craftspeople such as the Clogmaker and Blacksmith and have a go at throwing a pot on the wheel of St Fagans Pottery. For more information click here.
Shopping in the village of Mumbles
The pretty seaside resort of Mumbles near Gower is an ideal place to visit to do a bit of shopping. If you are looking for local produce you can find butchers, fishmongers and green grocers. But if you are looking for that designer dress or something from one of the galleries you should have plenty to choose from in one of the many unique shops scattered along Newton Road. When you need to take a break then why not visit one of the little coffee shops or better still have an iceream at Verdi's or Joes Ice Cream Parlour.Then walk off the calories along the front down to Mumbles Pier at the end. Or for a bit of culture then why not wander up to Oystermouth Castle and take in the fantastic view. Plenty to see and do anytime of year.
Heading up the Swansea valley be sure not to miss the show caves at Dan-yr-Ogof The caves are truly breathtaking. be sure to go to the Cathederal cave and the bone cave. There is also a dinosaur park and an Iron Age village, farm and play area so something for all of the family. Aprox 45mins in the car.
For up to date information on what's going on in the area go to
Penrice Estate News
We were pleased to be recommended in a recent article in the Guardian Newspaper travel section "Cool cottages in Gower to stay" Their article quote was as follows:-
The Towers, Penrice Estate
One of 16 holiday cottages on the Penrice Estate, this bolthole for two (no children allowed) is one of the quirkiest. Built as a folly in 1790, the Towers once served as a lodge at the gates of Penrice Castle and was designed to look like a ruin – but it's not...
For the full article please visit the Guardian Travel Section 7th February
More Penrice Estate News
Skinny Dipping at Oxwich Bay- It is an image that immediately makes you smile, and then prompts you to ask: ''Why?’’ One hundred people, as naked as the day they were born (bar the odd pair of glasses), are trotting down Oxwich Bay beach, on the Gower Peninsula, in Wales, at low tide.This was a recent event and probably one of our more unusual ones, a sponsored charity event when a 100 people got naked and bravely took to the water for a mass skinny dip in broad daylight, in aid of Marie Curie. Shrieks of delight ran out on a Sunday morning in June, with a few baffled giggles from assembled dog walkers and kayakers, thankfully it was lovely weather and the sun was shining. For the Telegraph report just follow the link by clicking here
We have also just been included in a recent Historic Houses Association video on their website and on You Tube entitled "Britains most special places" if you would like to take a look please click on the link below.
HHA - video