An All Inclusive Break at Potters Resort, Five Lakes in Essex

This review of Potters Resort is very long, but I can sum the experience up in a nutshell, quite frankly, it is brilliant!

There really is something for everyone, whether you like to keep constantly busy, like taking it easy or are somewhere in between. You can make Potters your own.

We have visited Potters at Hopton twice in the past with the kids and we loved it there (you can see those reviews here).  When we were invited, I jumped at the chance to visit the new Potters Resort in Essex – Five Lakes. It’s adults only, so when I found out my friend Vikki was returning from New Zealand it seemed an ideal place to catch up (and it was!).

We did everything, and I mean everything, we were on the go from breakfast until midnight. You don’t have to do this of course and can have a nap in the afternoon (naps for the win!), or just take it at a more sedate pace.

We have also put a video together of the weekend:


There are so many activities to do during the day, both indoor and out, and virtually everything is included.  I took photos of our itinerary, which will change of course, but gives you a good idea of what is there.


You can see just how much there was to do (and more, but I will go into that in a moment).  We loved the rifle shooting (I even won a medal!).


And let me mention, before I forget, that Potters chooses their staff really well.  They are all so welcoming and friendly and really put you at ease, even though some of the activities might be a little out of your comfort zone (though afterwards you can feel very proud of yourself for doing them!).

We also tried the laser clay shooting (I was terrible at this, but Vikki was fabulous, and bagged herself a medal!).


We also had a go at the archery – once we worked out how to do it, we both did ok – and more medals were won.


Another favourite were the golf buggies – where you drove a course as quickly as possible, with a jug of water on the back.  (Penalty points were added to your lap time if you spilled too much water!).  Vikki was a driving ninja!


There were lots of activities inside too.  We visited the spa for manicures (this was one of the few things that cost extra).  The girls in there were lovely and so welcoming!  (I am not sure what the girl’s name was who did my nails, but she was very well travelled and I enjoyed talking to her about her fabulous holidays!)


We also took part in quizzes and bingo.

There is a quieter room where the crafts sessions were (we did a clay session which was great fun and relaxed after all the charging about).

In that room, you could find SO MANY games, puzzles and books (check out all the photos):


Honestly, I love board games and could definitely have spent time in here, if we were not already so busy doing everything else!

There is also a huge sports hall, with a dance studio where you could learn salsa, cha cha and line dancing (we did the salsa, I was rubbish at it).  There was also an indoor bowls green here.

We also played darts:


And pool (there was snooker too):

I had never played shuffleboard before, so we had a go at that!

We also play a game where you bounced ping pong balls into a grid (waaay harder than it looks!).

Then there were other games, like giant jenga, connect four and even marble rolling!


We had a brilliant time and threw ourselves into the spirit of things and were thoroughly entertained!  But honestly, there was so much we also didn’t get chance to do like crazy golf, game shows and we didn’t even have time for the swimming pool and sauna!


On an evening there was fabulous entertainment (my favourite bit!).  We spent every night in the theatre watching the shows – which were fantastic.  Musical numbers, singers and dancers, were all top class and the theatre itself is very impressive with huge multimedia screens.  We had no problems getting a cracking seat in the theatre every night too.  Hats off to the entertainments team – they were top notch!

Photos are not allowed of the performances, so I didn’t take any, but did take a couple of the stage so you can get an idea.

The entertainment at Five Lakes isn’t just on an evening either, the entertainments team are around doing shows and quizzes (and even helping with crafts) throughout the day.  

Food and Drinks

Potters Resort is all inclusive, which, as well as all the activities and entertainment, means all your food and drink throughout your stay from 3pm on arrival day.  This includes three main meals a day (breakfast, lunch and dinner) and a midnight snack.  We never made it to the midnight snack but think this includes dishes like chilli and rice or curry.  

You keep the same table throughout your stay, which is lovely as you feel at home.  You can visit the dining room when you first arrive and a member of staff will show you where your table is.  (You don’t need to visit at this point, I am sure they will show you around later, but I am very nosy!)

Meal Times

Breakfast is served from 8.30 until 10am, Lunch (or Dinner if you are Northern like me!) is from 12.30 until 1.30pm, and Dinner (or Tea – again the Northern thing) is from 6.30 until 8pm.  Then the aforementioned Midnight Snack at midnight until 1pm.

I have lots of photos of menus and food for you, so there will be much scrolling – but if you are like me, you like to see these things!



For breakfast a member of staff will visit your table and take your drinks order and ask if you would like an toast.  You can also order a breakfast dish at this point – see the ‘From the kitchen’ section below or you can visit the buffet.

The buffet includes all you will need for a Full English, as well as a separate table for continental meats, cheeses, cereal and fruit.  There are also warm croissants and pastries.



At lunch you can order from the kitchen, items like fish and chips or lasagne or a vegetarian option.  Again, there is a buffet to help yourself to.

The lunch buffet:



At dinner (and lunch too actually) you can order wine or prosecco from your server.  Any other drinks, you can bring through from the bar.

I have included the Friday dinner menu below for an example.  The topside of beef was divine!

Dinner Buffet:


All Inclusive Drinks

As I mentioned, all your drinks are included, and that means hot drinks and soft drinks as well as alcoholic drinks.  Ordering is brilliantly easy, no desperately trying to catch the bartenders eye at Potters!  No, there are drinks ordering points where you approach with your table number.  Give your order (I never had to queue more than 30 seconds) then return to your table and your drinks magically appear!  Wonderful!

There are plenty of tables available to sit at too, indoors and out.  You can sit in the bar, or lounge on comfortable sofas in quieter spots.  If you had more time you could take a book and relax with a coffee.  I would have loved to have done this, but with so many other things to do, we had to prioritise and do everything else!

I have some photos below of some of the many sitting areas.  I took these photos very early on, so it was quiet – but importantly it never got too busy and always felt comfortable!


Deluxe Village Room

We stayed in a Deluxe Village Room, just a couple of minutes walk from the main building.  The room was really large with a balcony overlooking the countryside.  The balcony held a bistro set, perfect for a relaxed morning coffee!  In the room itself was our twin beds (sooooo comfortable!), two armchairs and a table and a dressing table and mirror.  There were also tea and coffee making facilities.

As you can see there was a flatscreen TV (though we were too occupied with everything else to watch it).  There was also a large wardrobe.

The bathroom was similarly large with a double shower and a bathtub (as well as loo and sink of course!).


We have been to both Potters Resorts (we have reviewed Hopton with kids here) and we have loved both.  If you are just adults, then definitely give Five Lakes a try, we loved it!


We were invited to visit and write about Potters Five Lakes.  Hopefully you can tell from my enthusiasm just how much we loved it!

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