Good Hotel Guide Review
It’s not just in the two-Michelin-starred restaurant of Raymond Blanc’s honey-stone Oxfordshire hotel (Relais & Châteaux) that you get great attention to detail: in the bedrooms, even the sugared almonds are colour coded according to the decor. The chef ‘has let his creative soul spill from the kitchen to the bedrooms’ to create what a Guide insider says is ‘probably the best hotel I have stayed in’. Elegant bedrooms, some with private garden, draw inspiration from Blanc’s past. A trip to China produced Lemongrass, with its bed on a raised dais and lime-green furnishings, and started Blanc growing the plant in the ‘beautiful gardens’, which include an orchard and organic kitchen garden supplying the restaurant. ‘It’s neither stuffy nor overbearing’; children are welcome guests. Staff are perfectly trained so they are ‘there when needed, never intrusive’. As for the food, ‘prepare to be blown away’ with dishes such as chargrilled Scottish langoustine, and squab pigeon wrapped in salt crust. Even the breakfast table is a ‘work of art’: Blanc spent a year perfecting it. ‘It’s expensive, but for a special occasion, it’s worth it.’ (JK)
32. 22 in garden buildings, some on ground floor, 1 suitable for disabled.
all year, restaurant closed for lunch Mon–Wed.
2 lounges, champagne bar, restaurant, private dining room, in-room TV (Sky, BT, Freeview), cookery school, civil wedding licence, 27-acre grounds (orchard, Japanese tea garden), public rooms wheelchair accessible, adapted toilet.
in some public areas.
all ages welcomed.
allowed in some bedrooms and public rooms, kennels provided.
Amex, MC, Visa.
per room B&B £570–£2,160. À la carte £180, 7-course set meal £194.