We stayed in the Wolf Rock Cottage at the end of June. It is located in the complex of lighthouse buildings at Lizard Point so follow the signs to the lighthouse from Lizard Town to find it. The last bit is though a gate and up a drive as if you are going to the Lighthouse Heritage Centre there. There is allocated parking for each cottage in the complex. When we arrived, it wasn't clearly marked, but they put up new signs while we were there. For Wolf Rock, you park next to the building and if you have two cars, you park one behind the other. When you drive out, you go through the National Trust Car Park as it is part of a one way system. If the car park attendant is on duty and you are not an NT member, just tell him you are staying at the lighthouse. He is very friendly and was interesting to talk to.
When we arrived, it was a howling gale. You need a combination number to release the door key from the outside key safe so make sure you've got it with you. We had left ours behind so we had to ring Cornish Cottages. Note there is no mobile phone signal in the cottages or outside them. I managed to find a spot nearby where there was just enough signal so I got through and got the number.
Once inside it all looked very good and clean. There was a welcome pack in the fridge of tea, coffee, milk, scones, cream and jam. Note this is not a cosy cottage with low beams. It is former lighthouse keeper accommodation and is quite austere with high ceilings and bare floors. You enter through the front door into a long main corridor. Off to one side is the main bathroom and a bedroom with twin beds and an en-suite. On the other side of the corridor is a room with the boiler and the kitchen/diner. You go through the kitchen to the lounge.
At one of the corridor is a broom cupboard. At the other end is the entrance to the main dining room which is in the base of the tower of the disused lighthouse which forms part of the property. There is spiral staircase up the tower to a small lounge room with tables and chairs at the top of the tower.
Also off the main corridor is a long, steep staircase up to the first floor where there is a double bedroom and a twin single bedroom. Note there is no bathroom, toilet or running water upstairs so it can be a long trek down to the bathroom in the middle of the night. This cottage is not suitable for people of limited mobility. I think one of the other cottages here is though.
As mentioned above, when we arrived it was cold and blowing a gale. The heating in the cottage was every efficient though and soon warmed it up. Don’t use the boiler room as a drying room though as it will make your clothes smell. The only room that isn't heated is the tower room, but there is a portable heater you can take up there.
Whilst I enjoyed the stay here, there were some problems. The extractor fan in the main bathroom did not appear to be working., We wasn't sure if it was being overwhelmed by the gale, but it did not seem right and there was a horrible smell of drains coming from the sink. By Monday the wind had died down, but it still didn't work and the sink smelt worse. We had to leave the plug in. You aren't encouraged to put bleach down as they have a bio digestion system for the sewage.
There is a also a heater in the lounge which gives a fire effect and should give off heat. We switched this one, but nothing happened.
We weren't sure who to ring as the property is owned by Trinity House, but managed by Cornish Cottages. We rang Cornish Cottages on the Sunday and left a message. We used the payphone in the cottage as they will ring you back and there is no mobile signal. We found the instruction book on Monday which said that all faults should be reported while you are there, otherwise they will just be treated as constructive criticism. It said to ring the Kernow Cleaning Fairies (I kid you not) who service the cottages. We did this and they told us that the sink was a known fault that had been reported. They also said they would send out someone for the fan and heater.
We were out on Tuesday, but when we came back we think someone had been in and the drain has stopped smelling. During dinner the electrician arrived and fixed the fan, but couldn’t sort out the heater. After he left, by lying on the floor, we found some hidden buttons underneath it which turned it on.
The smell came back the next day so we rang Cornish Cottages. They were most unhelpful. They wanted us to stay out the cottage for the whole of Thursday so they could mend it. We asked for a refund for doing that which they refused. It also came up in the conversation about the lack of mobile signal there. We feel they should mention it in the brochure. The manager said that he lived at the Lizard and the signal is fine. We agree in Lizard Town it is, but it stops just where the 30 mile limit ends at the top of the lane to the lighthouse. In the end we decided to live with it. The manager needs to work on his attitude as he seemed to have “the customer is a nuisance and always wrong” approach and we did not think we were being unreasonable.
Other niggles where the washer/dryer is not very good and even though there are superb views from the property, they are difficult to see from inside. The living room has all its furniture facing the wrong way and the tower room only has three small windows which you can only look through standing up or sitting in one of the high chairs in the room. They are also very dirty although I imagine they would be quite hard to clean.
The cottage is advertised as four star accommodation. I think I’d give it two and a half.
We had fog on the last night, but the fog horn on the active lighthouse on the other end of the complex was not intrusive. I have very good hearing, but it wasn't a problem. The light beam isn’t either.
People do tend to wander in thinking the cottage is the public toilets for the heritage centre (these are opposite) so have an eye to security and don’t leave the front door or the side door open.
Despite the niggled, this is a stunning place to stay with lovely coastal walks and views. There is Sammy the seagull who keeps all the other gulls away and comes visiting looking for food. The heritage centre is well worth a visit and you get a discount as a resident. The man who runs it set up the cottages as for holiday use before handing them to Cornish Cottage and he was very interesting to talk to. I also fore filled a childhood ambition of living in a lighthouse. I don’t think I would stay in this cottage again, but I’m glad I did despite the problems
- Also Known As:
- Lizard Lighthouse Cottages The Lizard, Cornwall