For as long as I can remember, I have loved beach huts. I love to see the rows of their bright colours along the beach and always have to take a photo of them as I pass on by.
It wasn’t until a couple of years ago when I saw a friend and her family hire one out for the day, that I realised they were even available to hire. It suddenly dawned on me that it would be absolutely awesome to do it if we ever went to the beach – so I could live my dream of having a beach hut – even if it was only for several hours!
So when we suddenly decided to head down to my Aunt and Uncles in Holland-On-sea for a few days to give ourselves a seaside break, and we planned on spending a whole day at the beach at nearby Walton-On-The-Naze, I had a brainwave and started having a look at available beach huts. The problem was, the whole purpose of us staying with my family was to save money. We weren’t supposed to be having any kind of holiday this year and had therefore factored in no money being spent on such a treat. And so, even though they aren’t actually all that expensive, I decided that I should probably just leave it. We are trying to save for the wedding so can’t really justify such costs right now.
But then I stumbled across Millie’s Beach Huts. A one man band, and lots of beach huts available. And not only did I discover that the owner worked with bloggers, I also discovered she is a blogger herself. And so I decided to write a pitch to her. To see if she fancied working with me on a review in exchange for a day in one of her huts. And I was so blooming chuffed when she emailed me back to tell me that she would be happy to let us have loan of her ‘Mickey’ hut for the day. I immediately ran in to tell the other half that not only were we now having a trip away, but that we had somewhere as a base for our planned day on the beach. Because we all know how blooming hot it can get on the beach. And we all know what a nightmare it can be traipsing stuff around through the sand.
And so here I am. Literally.
Ok, so by the time this review actually publishes, I’m back at home as I didn’t bring my laptop away with me. But I’m writing it from the hut – currently sat on the outside decking of ‘Mickey’, legs outstretched on the chair in front of me, having just enjoyed a nice cup of tea and a couple of flapjack squares (I’m trying to resist another!), whilst the other half is on the beach building sandcastles with Zach, and Oscar is having a nap inside the hut on the day bed that is in there. I mean it couldn’t really be any more perfect could it?
The beach hut sits on the second row back from the promenade but there is no issue with views. For it is raised up a level and I have a full view of the beach. In fact, about half an hour ago I was watching Zach crabbing with his Dad and some other boys who clearly knew what they were doing. And I just poked my head up to see Zach down on the beach again digging sandcastles with some boys he has clearly made friends with.
Inside the hut is just glorious. The name of this hut kinda gives it away as it is themed on Mickey Mouse. It’s neighbour, also owned by Vicki, is Minnie.
There is Mickey Mouse artwork on the wall. A blue dotty ‘M’ which matches the decor of the outer hut. There are Mickey Mouse bags hanging from a paddle on the wall, and a red dresser with Mickey mugs hanging from them.
The rest of the hut is just as you would expect from a quirky little beach hut. Cute bunting round the top, cute little shelves, a table and chairs, some gorgeous Kath Kidston crockery and a mirror to check your beach hair!
And then there are the practical things. A shelving unit housing a pot and a pan. A gas stove to heat up that all important kettle, or fry up some sausages if you should wish! Some washing up equipment and some brightly coloured utensils.
Inside the dresser there is a massive stash of cutlery, more plates and mugs and some more bits and bobs that may come in handy!
And then there is the Day Bed. It has a Cath Kidston style cover on it which is wipe clean. But there is an all important blanket that is wonderful for sleeping toddlers so they don’t stick to the bed. Or of course if you hire it out in the winter and need to warm up a bit. There is then a multitude of cushions, including an all important Mickey one that Oscar just had to sleep on, along with a couple of Mickey soft toys too.
There are other super thought out things as well. It pretty much has all the supplies that you could need, including tea, coffee and sugar. All you have to take is milk if required. There is also a cafetiere if you like your coffee posh! There is even a supply of dog biscuits for your canine friend who is also welcome to spend the day there, along with a water bowl especially for them. It is important to note that the section of the beach it is on, is dog free over the summer months. So they just need to stay off the sand and out of the sea.
There are a bunch of games housed under the bed, some children’s books and some crayons. There is a fan heater for those colder days and a giant bottle to fill up with water from the nearby tap. Then there is a bag of beach toys for the kids to use, a crabbing net, and a bunch of chairs that are perfect for use out on the decked terrace.
And the terrace is super cute too. It has a little attached pull out table and some cute bunting around the fences. It also has some super safety features to make it an enclosed balcony. There is a trap door which covers up the steps and then a gate that closes the whole thing in. Of course, we have still been super careful with Oscar but it’s a relief to be up here knowing that he can’t just fall off the edge.
The outside of the hut is painted in baby blue and white with a dotted upper section, a dotty opening window and a stable style door (I blooming love a stable style door),
The location of the hut is perfect too. It’s down on the Eastcliff end of the beach which is far enough away from the pier if you want to ignore the amusement side of the beach. It’s just six huts away from where the toilets are, including a baby change room, and then in the other direction there is a cafe which sells freshly made sandwiches, cakes and drinks along with stuff like toys, beach balls, sunglasses, body-boards and postcards. It’s probably a minute walk at tops (unless you have a toddler who is hungry and tired and refusing to walk!). You can either eat up there or take the food away to enjoy in the beach hut. Which is what we did!
There is also a highly recommended fish & chip hut on the beach a short walk away called Last Fisherman Cafe which is epic! We ended the day here munching on the freshest fish and chips I have ever had!
Parking near Mickey is perfect. If you get there nice and early, there is plenty of free side street parking. We managed to get parked right along the top and it was just a short walk down to the beach via the hilly footpath.
All in all, Mickey is blooming amazing. It has been the most perfect hub to use. Usually we go to the beach and spend some time on the sand before wandering around aimlessly. This has given us a base to use, somewhere to sit in if the heat gets too much (although that sea breeze from the decking is gorgeous!), somewhere to eat away from the sand, somewhere to house our belongings and somewhere for the littlest man to nap while his big brother still has epic fun down on the sand.
There is no doubt in my mind, that if you are spending a day down at the beach, one of Millie’s huts would be the perfect addition. In the Summer the hire cost is £50 and in the Winter it’s £35. I know that this time I couldn’t justify the cost because it was a very last minute planned few days away, and because we are trying to save every penny we can for the wedding – but for future trips, when they are planned a bit further in advance, I would have absolutely no hesitation to book another of Millie’s huts. She has several you see, in both Walton and Suffolk. All as gorgeous looking as the other. It really has made our day at the beach extra special, a real treat for us and a real treat for the kids.
Thank you so much to Vicki for agreeing to work with me. Obviously I was given the hire of the beach hut complimentary for the purpose of this review, but all thoughts and opinions are as always, my own. I am genuinely won over with this hut and I can’t wait to use another in the future.