Good Hotel Guide Review
A Georgian dower house extended to designs by Thomas Hardy, this luxury hotel and spa (Relais & Châteaux) stands in landscaped grounds adjoining a deer park. ‘We are big fans of this lovely hotel,’ write regular visitors. ‘Bedrooms are all different; all beautifully and traditionally furnished.’ They have gentle touches of humour – a print of Lowry’s The Schoolyard, vintage political caricatures. Even the smallest rooms have fresh fruit and flowers, and REN toiletries. You can take a cream tea in the beautiful drawing room, the conservatory or whisky lounge. In the restaurant, Steven Titman’s locally sourced menus range from pasta to such dishes as Lyme Bay gurnard and king prawn with lobster risotto; for vegans, chickpea and roasted red pepper chilli. Under-12s can dine in the conservatory and it’s a short walk down the road to The Acorn Inn (previous entry), also part of the Red Carnation group. Special praise this year goes to joint general manager Jack Mackenzie. ‘When a guest was taken ill after 10 pm, he insisted on driving him and his wife to A&E, waited with them, and returned them to the hotel.’ (Ian Dewey)
9 Fore Street
24. 6 in coach house, 3 in courtyard house, 5 in cottages, 1 on ground floor suitable for disabled.
lounge, drawing room, restaurant, conservatory, meeting room, in-room TV (Sky), indoor pool, spa, civil wedding licence, 4-acre grounds (tennis), public rooms wheelchair accessible, adapted toilet.
in bar/whisky lounge.
all ages welcomed.
allowed in some bedrooms, whisky lounge.
Amex, MC, Visa.
per room B&B double £235–£690. Fixed-price dinner £58–£75, vegetarian £47–£60, à la carte £38 (conservatory). 1-night bookings sometimes refused.