Askham Hall

Penrith, Cumbria

It may have a medieval pele tower, a 17th-century topiary garden, and now a Michelin-starred restaurant, but Charles Lowther's ancestral pile also has an unpretentious, relaxed atmosphere. More

Good Hotel Guide Review

It may have a medieval pele tower, a 17th-century topiary garden, and now a Michelin-starred restaurant, but Charles Lowther's ancestral pile also has an unpretentious, relaxed atmosphere. Stuffed full of antiques and family heirlooms, its 'shabby-chic' public rooms, where both children and dogs can roam, are comfortably cluttered with piles of books, modern art and old photographs. Expect, too, the odd frayed carpet. Large (sometimes vast) bedrooms with leaded windows and fireplace are ‘decorated with flair’; the best overlook the quintessentially English gardens. Some bathrooms have a marble washbasin and a roll-top bath. Richard Swale uses produce from the kitchen garden and the estate to conjure ‘delightfully balanced and creative dishes’ such as hand-dived scallop tartare with elderflower and rosehip, or dry-aged shorthorn beef with smoked shallot and beetroot. Meanwhile, Nico Chieze is ‘an affable and attentive host’ and the library’s honesty bar ‘made us feel we were staying at a grand house rather than a hotel’. (Robert Cooper, and others)

Hotel details

Address

Askham Hall
Askham
Penrith
Cumbria
CA10 2PF
England

Telephone

01931 712350

Bedrooms

19. 2 suitable for disabled.

Open

all year except Christmas, early Jan to mid-Feb, Sun/Mon.

Facilities

2 drawing rooms, snug, 3 dining rooms, in-room TV (Freeview), civil wedding licence, 12-acre grounds, outdoor swimming pool, hot tub, private function facilities, main restaurant wheelchair accessible, adapted toilet.

Background music

in reception rooms in evening.

Children

all ages welcomed, no under-10s in restaurant.

Dogs

allowed in bedrooms and public rooms, not in restaurant.

Credit cards

Amex, MC, Visa.

Prices

per room B&B single £138–£308, double £150–£320, D,B&B £250–£420. Tasting menu £75.