Castle Combe is often referred to as the prettiest village in England… so as you turn off the main street, as the wrought iron gates glide open, as you cruise up the drive taking in the sweeping views across the croquet lawn to this imposing 14th century manor house you just know you’re in for a treat!
This is luxury done to the sort of standard we`ve come to expect from a Small Luxury Hotels of the World property and they make it all look and feel so easy.
Getting a feel for the place…
Castle Combe Manor is a tucked away in the bottom of a valley, on the edge of the Cotswolds, in amongst some three or four hundred acres of woodland, parks and gardens. The main house, a warren of little drawing rooms and fireplaces, looks and feels almost untouched in it’s 500 years of history.
A little snug…
Our junior suite, upstairs in what I guess must have once been servant’s cottages, seemed equally authentic.
It’s not, you understand, that it’s not all plush and polished and clean and new; because it is. There’s a plasma screen in the bath, a walk-in monsoon shower, the lighting needs a manual and the tea caddy is better stocked than my house but it’s been done with enough care and attention that it feels as old as the bricks and mortar around you.
Dining out on their new star…
3 AA Rosettes and a Michelin Star set my expectations for dinner pretty high and I’m astonished to say they were surpassed. We tried their “taster menu”; seven light courses of exquisite food each course accompanied with a glass of wine specially selected to compliment the course. The food is fresh, local, exciting without being obscure and cooked to a standard you’re unlikely to find in too many restaurants in the UK.
Not interested in romance?
Beyond it’s obvious attraction to the romantics amongst us the Manor also boasts conferencing facilities which, if you’re serious about conducting any real business, includes golf!
I didn’t get a chance to go round the championship golf course but I have, on a previous occasion, been to a meeting at the Manor so I can confirm the service and lunch was of a similarly excellent standard to our stay this time.
Is it all it’s cracked up to be?
I have to say the Manor lives up to the standard SLH are know for worldwide, they’re not playing at being a luxury hotel this is old, traditional opulence. And because I’ve now seen it from the perspective of a meeting-delegate and a romantic couple it’s nice to be able to tell you the standard seems have remained consistently high over the years.
If you need a little weekend break, or you’re looking to be married or honeymoon in the quintessential little English village that Castle Combe; look no further than this lovely little piece of Costwold heaven.
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