Meet the homeowner - Amanda Bannister
We spoke to our long-time London homeowner, Amanda Bannister about her world, her passions, and her experience with onefinestay.
Can you tell us a bit about you and your family?
I am a 49-year-old intellectual property lawyer and Ed, my husband, is a commercial property lawyer. We have three kids: Jack (19), Freddie (17) and Megan (12).
What are your passions in life?
My passion is craft and design. I have always been a keen ‘maker’, mainly focusing on ceramics – I have my own small pottery studio in our home in Wiltshire where we retreat for weekends and holidays.
This extends to my work - I am lucky to have some incredible ‘creative’ clients in my legal practice including well known fashion designers (in the photographs accompanying this piece, I can be seen sporting trousers and a sweater by Roland Mouret) and furniture makers such as Russell Pinch.
Your artistic passion is prominent in your home - tell us about some of the pieces you have.
The art and objects in our home reflect our eclectic taste. We have several works by our good friend and fine artist Danny Rolph. I am particularly drawn to his work for its energy and vibrant colours: there’s a hidden perspective which takes you on a new journey each time you look at his work.
We have a beautiful old family marble bust and oil painting of my husband’s ancestors and a collection of masks which we have gathered on our travels over 25 years including masks from Nepal, Indonesia, Mexico and Guatemala. Then there are the marquetry cupboards in our bedroom which were made by our good friend Dom Parish of Wardour Workshops in our village, Semley, in Wiltshire: he and I conceived the design together with reference to Japanese art, Beardsley and the Yellow Book.
What’s your preferred secret spot in London?
All Saints Road in Notting Hill is my absolute favourite spot – I love 7 Saints for dinner or the Tin Shed for brunch.
What's the last good book you read?
Sarah Winman – When God Was A Rabbit
Do you listen to any podcasts you could recommend to our community of homeowners?
We are avid listeners of BBC Radio 4 and all their podcasts – particularly anything from their comedy section and The Kitchen Cabinet.
Where did you last travel and do you have any tips or recommendations for us?
Japan – an extraordinary experience in every way. Everything is done with such care, attention and grace.
What destinations are on your travel bucket list?
I’d like to return to Japan and spend more time seeking out incredible ceramics and trying some of the food we missed last time
How did you find out about onefinestay?
We were referred by other onefinestay homeowners. Initially I felt nervous about handing my home to strangers but from the moment I joined I realised that for the most part strangers take more care of your things than you do!
Why did you choose to partner with onefinestay?
We regularly stay at our cottage in Wiltshire, so decided to rent our London home out while we’re away. We selected onefinestay because the brand values are second to none. Attention to detail is extremely important to me, and I can’t fault this with onefinestay.
What do you like most about onefinestay?
I love the way they take special care of our home. The standard of cleaning when we return after a guest stay is very high.
Two years ago we set up our own holiday cottage in Wiltshire and the onefinestay way of doing things has proved a model for us.
How do you bring the onefinestay way to your own holiday cottage?
The Craftsman’s Cottage is a luxury holiday cottage – a home from home where we carefully consider every detail, just like onefinestay would. I’ve brought my passions into it to make it unique, by decorating and curating the cottage to the highest standard with a specific focus on British art, craft and design. We have partnered with some incredible contemporary designers and makers to fill the cottage with beautiful things for our guests to enjoy, and everything is ‘shoppable’.
Do you have any tips on getting the most out of onefinestay?
Be sure to keep your calendar up to date with availability to get bookings.
Do you have any tips on renting out your home if you're thinking about it for the first time?
Have a good de-clutter and streamline your possessions to avoid that last minute panic before you hand your home over to onefinestay – a good system for guest set-up really helps.