There’s one basic, but significant difference between the Willow which Carnaby is introducing for the 2014 season and all its other models: the Willow is the first model the company has built to residential standard BS3632 rather than holiday standard EN 1647. Not that you would necessarily notice the difference at first glance it’s only when you go into the static caravan and see the quality of the fittings and fixtures that you realise just how special it is.
In the kitchen for example, plinth and under shelf lighting plus a Velux roof light have been included as standard whilst the glazed door wall cupboards have top hung single doors which open to allow maximum accessibility.
There’s also a five burner ‘Wok’ gas hob set into the work top above which is a stainless steel extractor. However, we would criticise the splashback on the wall behind the hob as it only goes partway up to the extractor. In our opinion this is likely to result in fumes etc becoming ingrained in the wall. Other features in the kitchen worth mentioning include an integrated under worktop fridge and separate freezer, and a tall unit contacting a two door gas oven and grill, above which is a microwave in its own dedicated cabinet.
Dining also takes place in the kitchen area and comprises a rectangular table and four chairs, although in the layout in the brochure, a round table is shown.
Importantly, the kitchen and dining area is separated from the lounge by a wall and glazed door – a feature we very much like. Making the lounge separate, it helps create a much more homely feeling to the home. Open plan living is very popular but there are times – especially when entertaining guests – when the ambient atmosphere is enhanced by not having the sights and smells on the kitchen predominating.
The centrepiece of the lounge is the electric fire with its real flame effect in a stone effect surround. Furniture comprises a two seat settee and two armchairs with the settee converting into an occasional bed if required. In the end wall is a pair of French doors either side of which are tall glazed window units; together with the other windows in the room they make it both light and airy. Night time lighting is via a ceiling pendant and wall lights. Additionally, the home comes with DAB radio and docking station with Bluetooth ceiling speakers.
To get to the bedrooms and bathroom you go through a door from the kitchen into a narrow corridor. On the left is the bathroom. In addition to a bath, it also has a shower on the wall above the taps, plus a rectangular ceramic washbasin on top of a vanity unit and a low level toilet with a concealed cistern, whilst in the wall adjacent to the window is an extractor fan.
Opposite the bathroom is the second bedroom. In addition to the twin beds separated by a small bedside cabinet, there is plenty of storage in the cabinets above the bed and the double door full height wardrobe. Behind the beds are fabric headboards and opposite their foot, a display panel and mirror, plus a small shelf.
The main bedroom is a delight! It has a double bed with gas strut lift up storage, padded headboards reaching up to a row of wall lockers separated by two open shelves with downlights, bedside cabinets and reading lights.
Facing the foot of the bed is an en suite complete with a quadrant shower, ceramic washbasin and vanity unit plus a low level toilet – again with a concealed cistern. Next to the en suite is a walk-in wardrobe which as well as hanging space also has a chest of drawers plus plenty of shelves and cubby holes.
Verdict: Built to residential standard BS3632, the Carnaby Willow can be considered a static caravan for all seasons, as well as a permanent home for people wanting to downsize. There is a host of additional options to enhance it still although we do have one reservation concerning its construction – it is built on a painted chassis with pre-galvanised legs.
We recently learned that the chassis on the Willow Lodge is now the fully galvanised ibeam chassis. This will not increase the ex works price listed below.
The Carnaby Willow is a worthy addition to Carnaby’s 2014 portfolio.
Visit the Carnaby Caravans Ltd website for more information.
Ex-works price: £59,358*
*Price is ex-works and includes VAT at 30%. Additional charges will be made by park operators, and/or distributors for transportation, siting and annual maintenance. Please check the price carefully before you commit to purchase, as prices vary considerably dependent, amongst other factors, on the geographical location of your chosen park.