Bespoke Luxury Narrowboat - visit Cafwin Cruises
About Catherine Armstrong
Cafwin Cruises is very much a family-run business. I’m Catherine (known in the family as Cafwin and hence the rather unusual name of the company) and I’m the Managing Director. I will be running every aspect of the business on a day to day basis, but, as needs be, I will be assisted by my husband, Mark, who still works full time as the Technical Director for a large Facilities Management Company, and our son, Lewis, who will assist when not at university. Mark and I are both recently retired from the Armed Forces; Mark was in the Army and I was in the Royal Air Force. We both had interesting and exciting careers that saw us involved with all types of activities, but skiing and narrowboating became my passion and Mark was a competitive Luge Athlete and is now Chairman of British Luge having been a director on the British Olympic Committee in the past. We retired to the lovely county of Worcestershire and have both become very involved with the local community. Mark is a Worcestershire Ambassador, a Magistrate and Chairman of the St John Ambulance Country Priory Group (CPG). I’m the Secretary of the CPG, am a member of the huge Worcestershire contemporary choir, Voices Unlimited, am heavily involved with our village where I organise regular Litter Picks (my biggest bug bear is litter strewn around our lovely countryside and towns) and help out with other local activities. We hope our customers will choose us because they can see that we are offering something a little different, at a competitive price, but with nothing spared to ensure a luxurious, romantic and fun getaway. We will personally do everything within our powers to bring you the best holiday ever. We also hope that you will enjoy the little extras that we’ll be providing; but we will leave you to find those for yourself when you get on board your boat. Finally, we are only a phone call or e-mail away if you have any questions, so please don’t hesitate to contact us. Love Catherine x
Catherine Armstrong purchased this Boat in 2019
Why Catherine Armstrong chose Hanbury
We are so excited to introduce our first Boutique Narrowboat, Arthur Owl, and we hope you’ll be amongst those to take advantage of holidaying on our beautiful brand new boat. Our specially chosen boat builders impressed us with their understanding of the needs of the modern-day boater and their bespoke service to furnish a vessel that results in true contemporary comfort on the water. This boat is finished to the highest of standards and is very different from most hire boats on the water.
What makes this Boat unique
At 57’ long x 6’ 10” wide, Arthur Owl will be a boat built for romance and adventure in a ‘reverse layout’ contemporary cottage style. The décor is nostalgic with an ambience of simplicity and practical charm. When boating, we like to be close by to one another, even if one is driving the boat and the other is preparing food or drinks. The reverse layout of Arthur Owl allows for this and also means that we can fit in a very comfortable master bedroom as well as a full, cushion-clad, external sitting area at the stern of the boat. This way, whoever is at the helm, they have company as they cruise along the beautiful waterways of Worcestershire and Warwickshire. Time for contemplation or conversation, our aim is for Arthur Owl to be unobtrusive and tranquil, so its fitted with Hospital Silencers which helps reduce engine noise. It is powered by a Vetus 42 Engine, one of the best on the market, and manoeuvring the boat is assisted by the installation of Bow Thrusters making moving away from the bank or tight corners simplicity itself. Imagine a shiny two-toned deep ruby red and mid grey exterior, accessed from the capacious stern into a warm and inviting interior, decked out with engineered oak wood flooring and painted in the muted colours of Farrow & Ball’s Elephant’s Breath and Purbeck Grey. Designer features abound with oak topped hand painted kitchen cabinets, a Belfast sink, slate grey radiators, tailor made soft furnishing, and ambient mood lighting twinkling from the gunwale and entry steps.
100% refund for cancellations more than 60 days before check-in date.
A floating boutique hotel
From start to finish a truly magical experience. Cathy is a great communicator who quickly answered all our questions prior to the trip. Upon arrival we were met by Cathy who introduced us to her brand new floating palace. The interior really is special and would put many a boutique hotel room to shame. The layout is carefully thought out with plenty of relaxing space, together with a fully equipped kitchen. We found storage space everywhere with all the fixtures and fittings of the highest quality. The boat engine is fitted with a fantastic silencer which meant conversation was easy on the large aft seating section. This area had enough room for a removable table and parasol (all supplied). Cathy gave us detailed maps and suggested itineraries, all of which made our holiday even more special. We had a wonderful time on an amazing boat. We shall be booking again for next year.
Gorgeous Boutique Narrow Boat
As novice narrow boaters, we were apprehensive about learning everything for our trip. Our fears were soon allayed by Catherine who gave us a full run down of the workings of the boat, and fully supervised us through the first set of locks, both on managing the lock mechanism and handling the boat. She was calm and patient and ensured that we were going to have a safe and enjoyable time.
We were expecting a well equipped boat from the descriptions, however, were blown away when we got inside. Everything had been thought of, from the full kitchen complete with coffee machine, dishwasher, microwave and every utensil you could need to prepare hearty meals. The living area complete with TV, DVD, Bose speaker and large sofa was very cosy area in which to relax following a day out in the fresh air. There was ample storage for the large amount of clothes we had taken along to account for all types of weather. The fully fitted shower room with fabulous multi jet shower, we would never have imagined would be found on a boat. Fluffy towels and bathrobes helped to provide a very chilled time. Then to the luxurious bed which was very spacious and comfy.
We were unfortunate with the weather which meant our original route was not available due to the high water levels on the Severn. Catherine advised us on an alternative which was possible in the time we had. There was plenty of literature and maps providing information on places of interest along the way.
Thank you so much for providing an enjoyable first trip on the canals - we are now converts!
The historic town of Droitwich Spa is a beautiful spa town set in the picturesque Worcestershire countryside. A small town of great charm, it owes its existence to the natural brine springs which emanate from subterranean beds of pure rock salt 200ft below the ground. Dissolved by underground springs, artesian pressure forces the salt to the surface as brine. The celebrated town offers a great range of leisure activities including guided walks, an open air lido and two pretty Green Flag parks. The Droitwich canal network (the Worcester and Birmingham Canal) is a haven for walkers, cyclists and nature lovers and it’s at the gorgeous and modern Droitwich Spa Marina where Cafwin Cruises is privileged to operate from.