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Transforming our Glamping Pod with a Sundeck Addition

Updated: Nov 27, 2023


Ok so Orme, our 2 + 2 berth glamping pod has been open for a while now, and guests have been enjoying it throughout the summer.

Originally it was fronted with the stone and gravel taken from Offa (our couples glamping pod) when we installed it's new hot tub deck last January! Bu we knew this would always be a temporary measure

It never really worked! Orme sits lower on the land than all the other pods making it slightly wetter underfoot in inclement weather, making things a bit mucky when we have a storm (Storm Babette I'm looking at you!! 🌧️). It meant mud in the fab new large hot tub (seriously it's meant to take 4 or 5 people, but I reckon if youre friendly enough with one another you could fit 8 🤣), and mud dragged inside the pod, and that's just not what we want for our guests. This is Glamping NOT camping after all!

So what to do? And how to make it unique? Each pod has been designed and fitted out by my wife and I, each one with a bespoke design, so each pod is distinctive.

Instead of the composite decks we installed on Offa & Ayr, I made the decision to go with something a bit more in keeping with Orme's streamside theme. not least because the thought of knocking in a hundred or so pilings for the composite had me in a cold sweat 😰. So with a call to our local Huws Gray, and a few hundred pounds lighter (money not weight unfortunately), I had a carpark full of sleepers and stone. I then spent the next week carting all of it single handedly down to the glampsite (OK, maybe I DID lose a few pounds in weight), and with no real plan except a vague picture in my head, I started laying down sleepers (Damn they're heavy) in a rough layout of where I wanted the new deck to be. Des[ite the lack of true plans, it still had to fulfill two main functions: to provide a level and dry area between glamping pod and hot tub (no muddy feet remember), and secondarily to provide an area leading down to the hot tubs' wood burning boiler, saving guests slipping on the possibly wet and muddy lawn.

Building a new hot tub area | glamping pod | Flintshire
Making it up as I go along

Well, unbelievably it all worked out really well. I had a layout that worked, it was the right height (By accident), and filled the brief, and that vague image in my head started getting a little clearer.

The engineering mindset drilled into me by my Dad as a kid, knew that the sleepers were likely going to take a lot of lateral load once I started piling the stone in, so laying the bottom sleepers flat rather than upright, screwed securely into the upright sleepers, with all the corners securely screwed as well, gave me a tough, load bearing frame.

I did have a small geeky moment with the Uber long screws I'd ordered, I was far more overjoyed at how easy they were to drive than I had a right to be. I mean, seriously, I used to get excited over booking tickets to a Metallica concert, now it's long screws!! 🤣.

And that's it, I had the layout sorted! A bit painting and swearing and the whole thing was ready to load!

A tonne of MOT (crushed stone) went in first to provide footings and drainage. After that was tamped down, about half a tonne of river pebbles were added on top, and then finally to smooth it all off underfoot, making sure you could walk on it easily in sliders, the gaps were filled with golden gravel (love this colour).

I am super pleased with the results considering I didn't so much as rough sketch it on a napkin before hand!! It's definitely answered the brief! It keeps all our guests out of the mud, let's you get easily to the hot tub and boiler, and I think it really leans into the streamside vibe, feeling like river or canalside pilings. What are your thoughts?

Emlyn's Coppice, Glamping in North Wales is open almost throughout the year, from February to Early January. And with underfloor heating and even wood stoves in our couples pods. They're toasty whatever the season.

Book a hot tub glamping break in Wales, just visit our website for the very best prices.

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