Mevy Slip Coach, Rail Holiday, Cornwall
The Mevy Slip Coach is one of a number of Victorian train carriages that’s been lovingly converted into a luxury self catering rental by Rail Holiday in the Tamar Valley area of Cornwall, England.
It comprises two bedrooms (one double, one triple with bunk beds, so ideal for families with young children) an open plan lounge dining room / kitchen area and a bathroom, with a regular flushing toilet and its own clawfoot bathtub and shower.
The master double bedroom is especially cosy, done out in warm, inviting tones of claret and mahogany. We felt perfectly cocooned in the plush kingsize bed, with its padded headrest and super-soft chenille throw.
There are bedside cabinets with touch-to-dimmer table lights, an antique chandelier-style overhead light and a gorgeous, tiger-striped teak side table.
There are lots of lovely decoration touches dotted about too, such as the original string netting luggage racks, leather window straps and the many poster slots filled with vintage seaside postcards, posters and authentic 1920s passenger notices, salvaged from the Great Western Railway line.
The centre piece of the lounge area are the traditional train car seats facing each other over a small, movable table. These have been beautifully upholstered in subtle shades of deep green and gold, with a beaded, velvety finish.
Each could comfortably seat 3 people and are long enough for you to stretch out and watch the dinky TV with integral DVD player.
Despite making you feel like you’ve just stepped back to the golden age of rail travel, there’s no scrimping on the mod cons here, with free Wi-Fi provided. There’s also a mini Hi-Fi with CD player and DAB Radio and a shelving unit stacked with a good selection of boardgames, maps, travel guides and books.
We stayed in mid March, so it can get a little bit nippy at night, but each window comes with its own detachable blind and there are two electric heaters which swiftly do the business.
The kitchen area with its swish marble tops and cleverly constructed cupboards and nooks is a masterclass in ingenious micro-design and use of space.
The car sits on a raised platform accessed by a small staircase that leads to a reasonably sized decking area with garden table and chairs for four. From here you can enjoy breakfast and views of the rolling hills and River Lynher in the company of birds from the surrounding woodland attracted by the feeders. Below there’s a herb garden and attractive flower beds, plus a swingball set.
This is a self catering rental, so no food is provided, but it comes complete with a fridge, a simple two hob electric cooker, microwave, kettle and all pots, pans and basic kitchen utensils you might conceivably need.
You can expect to find some tea, coffee, sugar, plus some locally-made biscuits and apple juice as a wee welcoming gift.
There are a number of pubs serving food, one in St Germans itself and several others in nearby villages a short drive away.
The best local dining option we tried was the Travelling Diner street food van, which rocks up to St Germans village (just a few minutes walk downhill from the Mevy) every Friday evening and Sunday lunchtimes and serves up an excellent range of good value international dishes, alongside British classics such as beef suet pudding.
The Mevy is ideally placed for rail travellers coming to Cornwall, being 50 yards from St Germans train station, a village stop on the mainline between Penzance and Plymouth.
If you’re coming from London, you just cross the platform bridge to the other platform and you’ll see the coach and Rail Holiday sign down the slope just to the right.
St Germans is a small village of only 600 people, so don’t expect a surplus of facilities, pubs or nightlife. If you’re coming by car you can easily explore the many attractions this corner of Cornwall has to offer – and if you’re coming by train then you can obviously make good use of the train line to get out and about.
The coach can be booked for short breaks of 3 nights or more from £245. Friday is the preferred changeover day, but the owners are flexible about it. There are even special discounts offered for couples or solo travellers. Please see the excellent Rail Holiday website for the full schedule of availability and up-to-date prices.
Mevy’s owners actually live very nearby, in the St Germans station building, which they bought 20 years ago. They were consistently friendly and helpful, but did not intrude on our privacy at all.
The Mevy Slip Coach is a truly unique and quirky self catering rental, carefully considered and restored with obvious love and care. It’s perfect for rail fans of course, as well as couples or small families who simply appreciate staying somewhere charming and different in a beautiful, quiet corner of Cornwall.
Also on site is this other train carriage rental, the Old Luggage Post Van.
The interiors of this car have a very different, rustic feel, with its own private garden, wood paneling and the cosiness provided by a wood burning boiler in the middle of the room. We didn’t stay in this car but it struck us as a very romantic option for couples.
This train stay was fully approved by Railway Stays.
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