The Packhorse Inn, located just outside of the notable town of Newmarket, is the perfect hotel for those seeking to get away from the hustle and bustle of loud city life. The hotel itself is nestled in the countryside in the centre of the quaint, quiet village of Moulton, beside the village green. It is approximately 5 miles from the world famous Newmarket Racecourse, and 15 miles from Cambridge – therefore is a great location for those wishing to explore Suffolk and the surrounding area!
The hotel manages to skillfully combine the contemporary elegance that people have come to expect, while not losing the traditional characteristics that boutique hotels can offer. This is most apparent in the bedrooms (I had the privilege of staying in Primrose, but I imagine all the rooms are maintained to the same impeccable standard) which have all the modern features one would like such as flat screen televisions and walk in glass showers, but also contain more traditional features such as antique towel rails and ornate dressing tables – another little surprise came in the form of a freshly baked shortbread biscuit held in a small wooden box next to the tea-making facilities in the room. The Packhorse Inn’s attention to detail was superb; their philosophy is clearly “it’s the little things that count” and this mantra can be seen throughout the hotel.
The room, Primrose, was as beautiful as it was elegant. The well proportioned room contains everything one would require from a hotel room, and more (such as the view across the village common!). A particular highlight was certainly the free-standing stone bath situated next to the window. It was vast, the Packhorse Inn website suggests that the bath could easily fit 2 people – this is not an exaggeration!
Dinner was booked for 7:30, and we definitely urge anyone looking to eat at The Packhorse Inn to book a table as it was full when we sat down. To start, we had the salmon and hens egg fishcake, and smoked chicken terrine respectively – both were exquisitely presented and were the perfect size for starters, a definite recommendation. To follow, we had the ratatouille risotto and a Red Poll burger. The risotto had rich delicious flavours that complimented the goats cheese and olives placed on top; the burger, served medium rare, was a handful (definitely a good thing!) – the Suffolk Gold cheese and red onion marmalade definitely move the burger away from your standard meal.
Although extremely full from the starter and main course, my partner and I felt the meal would not be complete without a desert and so decided to share the assiette of retro desserts and we are extremely glad we did – the desert, designed for 2 people to share is a mixture of 6 different deserts ranging from a hot chocolate fondant, to a sweet cheesecake slice, to sharp apple and rhubarb crumble pot. If you have room, we would definitely recommend it.
The Packhorse Inn is a wonderful hotel, warm and welcoming – if you are planning to attend the Newmarket Races and need a friendly, charming place to stay the night or spend the evening – there is no place better than here.
Pros: Boutique hotel just outside of Newmarket. Each bedroom is unique and has its own style. Even if you are not staying the night, stay for an evening as the food is delicious.
Cons: The room, Primrose, does not have air conditioning, so on a warm summers evening you may find it a little too warm – however, this really is the only negative we can think of!
For more information; see their website: http://www.thepackhorseinn.com/
Other properties in the Chestnut Group include:
The White Horse in Easton
The Rupert Brooke in Grantchester
The Northgate in Bury St Edmunds
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