Good Hotel Guide Review
In the once lawless Debatable Lands, Gerald and Margo Smith have brought order to a former coaching inn-turned-contemporary hotel. Interiors evoke the surrounding landscape, with the use of timber, slate and stone, wool and tweeds. Bedrooms, each named after a clan of Borders reivers, have a state-of-the-art bathroom, home-baked biscuits, fresh flowers, Noble Isle toiletries. Trusted readers were shown to a room, up ‘the imposing glass-walled staircase’, with an espresso machine, good lighting, lovely views (though you had to sit down to appreciate them through the low windows). No sooner had the Guide awarded the place a coveted César for 2019, than the talented duo of chefs who launched it headed for the hills. Change upon change has followed, but with an enthusiastic new manager, David Hair, and chef, Chris Archer, things are settling down. The kitchen ethos is the same, with the use of locally farmed and foraged ingredients, vegetables from the kitchen garden of the Smiths’ stately home, Netherby Hall. ‘Despite its remoteness, it is not that far from the main Edinburgh–Carlisle road (A7) and Kielder Forest, with Hadrian’s Wall to the south.’ Reports, please.
9. 3 in converted barn, covered walkway from reception, 3 on ground floor.
all year, restaurant closed Sun evening, Mon, Tues.
bar, restaurant, conservatory, free Wi-Fi, in-room TV (Freeview), bar and conservatory wheelchair accessible (restaurant menu available), adapted toilet.
in bar and conservatory.
all ages welcomed.
allowed in 8 bedrooms, bar and conservatory, not in restaurant.
Amex, MC, Visa.
per person B&B £100–£125. Pub menu of seasonal dishes £16–£28 per main-course dish.