Although designated a three bedroom static caravan, the ABI Ambleside can in fact, sleep eight due to a sofa bed being included as part of the lounge furniture. Introduced into the company’s range in 2011, and built to EN 1647 standard, the caravan has a pre-galvanised steel chassis, aluminium cladding and a pantile roof. Additionally, full central heating, and uPVC double glazing make this static caravan suitable for all year round holidays.
From the outside the caravan looks nothing special having a rectangular box shape measuring 38ft x 12ft which basically means that it will never stand out from the crowd. But equally, it will fit easily on the vast majority of holiday caravan parks. As you go through the entrance there is a tall fridge/freezer on the right. To the left is the dining area and immediately facing the entrance, the kitchen.
From the dining and kitchen areas an archway leads into the lounge. This, it has to be said, is fairly small in area. In addition to the two seat sofa bed, there are two armchairs, but what concerned us was the fact that the Ambleside is a three bedroom static caravan but only has seating for four people in the lounge. No doubt the four chairs in the dining area could also be used in the lounge but the conditions would be fairly cramped. Additionally, there would still be insufficient chairs if six or eight people wanted to sit down together at the dining table.
Heating in the lounge is via a radiator incorporated into a display unit and an electric fire mounted on the caravan’s front wall, whilst in the end wall is a pair of patio doors. Lighting comprises an attractive pendant suspended from the vaulted ceiling, supplemented by a wall light and lighting in the display unit.
The kitchen is undoubtedly one of the static caravan’s best features having plenty of storage space in cupboards and drawers, plus plenty of working tops for food preparation. Cooking equipment comprises an electric cooker set at an angle in one corner, with a stainless steel cooker hood above it. The sink and drainer are also in stainless steel and there is provision for an optional microwave, dishwasher, and washing machine, although the latter two would result in the loss of cupboard space. Next to the dedicated space for a microwave is a five bottle wine rack which we considered an extra plus feature of the kitchen.
From the kitchen a door leads into a corridor and the sleeping accommodation. Immediately on the right is the caravan’s shower room. This has a large shower cubicle with a thermostatically controlled shower, plus a ceramic washbasin set into a vanity unit with a central shelf, either side of which is a cupboard.
Above the washbasin is a glass shelf and a large mirror, both mounted on a panel which forms the rear of the vanity unit. Under the obscure glazed window is a chrome ladder radiator, but missing is a toilet, this being in an adjacent room, yet another feature in the Ambleside which we very much liked. In addition to the toilet this tiny room also has a small pedestal washbasin and towel ring. The caravan’s water heater has also been fitted in a cupboard in the toilet.
Opposite the toilet is the second bedroom which has two single beds with a common headboard. Above the headboard two cupboards are separated by an open unit. On the underside of each cupboard is a reading light and between the beds is a small bedside cabinet and 13 amp socket.
A two door, floor to ceiling, wardrobe unit with three drawers in its base has been fitted opposite the foot of the bed on the outside wall, whilst facing the bed is a dressing table – another nice feature in our opinion.
The main bedroom and the third bedroom take up the full width of the Ambleside at the end of the caravan. The main bedroom has a double bed with a gas strut assisted base affording extra storage, whilst above the headboard are two wall cupboards separated by an open shelf unit. As in the other bedrooms, reading lights have been fitted on the underside of the cupboards. There is also a wardrobe plus a dressing table – with an angled top – opposite the foot of the bed.
The third bedroom which adjoins the main one is almost a mirror image of bedroom two, the main difference being that the dressing table, as well as being smaller than the one in bedroom two, has an angled top similar to the top of the dressing table in the main bedroom.
Whilst the designers have gone to great lengths to put a lot into the Ambleside and utilise the space to its maximum, we came away feeling that as a three bedroom caravan it would be likely to feel cramped – especially if, instead of six people, there were eight. This is particularly the case when it comes to the lounge which basically has seating for four people – a two seat sofa and two armchairs. The same is true with respect to the furniture in the dining area – a small, non-extending dining table and four upholstered chairs. It would be possible to seat another two people at the table, but eight, we fear, would be too cramped.
There is a two bedroom version of the caravan in which the lounge – including the sofa bed – kitchen and dining areas are the same as those in the three bedroom layout. The difference between the two layouts is that the second bedroom is slightly larger than bedroom two in the three bedroom model, whilst the main bedroom is considerably larger. As the daytime accommodation in the two versions is identical we feel the two bedroom model is the more viable layout providing no more than six people are expected to stay in the caravan at the same time.
Pre- galvanised chassis
uPVC double glazing
Full central heating
Type: Single holiday caravan
Standard: EN 1647
Size: 38ft x 13ft
**Price will vary depending on your chosen park – please contact your park owner or the manufacturer for prices**