Concierge.com's insider take:
Viscount Coke—or Tom Coke, as he calls himself—and his wife, Polly, joined forces with two brilliant designers to renovate this Victorian-styled brick lodge on the Earl of Leicester's ancestral estate in 2001. It was an instant hit, not only for the deliberately faded opulence of the British Raj–meets–Primrose Hill boho interiors, but also for the first-class food in the restaurant. Ten rooms with names like the Wash, the Stone, the North Sea, and the Colonial mix mahogany pieces specially commissioned in Rajasthan with flea-market antiques and crisp linens. Some are madly colorful, others muted, all with shades from the National Trust color wheel you see in every hip home in London: leaf green, burnt orange, shell pink. Such was the demand for the rooms, the Cokes have just renovated three fabulous family-sized self-catering lodges on the grounds—a couple of arched gateways and a gamekeeper's cottage. They're the opposite of IKEA—one kitchen has handcrafted wood cabinets and an Aga (so much better than a Wolf stove, darling); another has flagstone floors and a winding stone stairway. Guests can hike the surrounding forests, visit 18th-century Holkham Hall, where Tom Coke lives, and bird-watch on the endless strand of Holkham's beaches 15 minutes west. Along with the restaurant, there are lounges and pub rooms with Labradors dozing on faded velvet couches—or guests snoozing over the Sunday papers.