Review: Val Jones, Travel Editor
- Thank you to the hotel for hosting us for this review. Our stay was complimentary, but all words and opinions are our own, and a fully honest account of our stay
The hotel requires pre-arrival on-line check in.
Following the government guidelines regarding masks, social distancing, hand sanitiser stations and limited guest numbers.
The Cotswold House Hotel & Spa is part of the Bespoke Hotel Group. This grade ll listed, town house hotel, is a mix of original characteristics and stylish modern features, and the old Coach House has been converted into the hotel spa. Inside the hotel there is a comfortable bar and bistro which also serves the menu from the hotels resident Fig restaurant whilst covid restrictions are in place. There are a variety of 28 bedrooms; single, couple, family, dog-friendly, cottage rooms with hot tub, and suites. The grounds of the hotel are beautifully manicured gardens with seating areas and lawn games including giant Jenga and Connect Four. When we arrived at reception, we were met by the very polite and informative staff who explained the latest covid safety measures and procedures and the general layout of the hotel.
Our room, a junior suite, was situated in the main building overlooking the rear gardens. The large double French doors opened out onto a small balcony with two patio chairs and table. The super-huge bed was made up from two queen-sized beds and dressed in crisp white linen. Tea and coffee making facilities are provided along with an iron and board if you need it. In the centre of the room sits a two-seater sofa facing the wall mounted flat screen tv and writing desk. The suite has a fireplace to keep cosy in cooler months and several contrasting modern art pieces hung on the walls
The luxury bathroom features a luxurious free standing, double-ended bath. There are twin sinks and large walk-in shower and large heated towel rail loaded with fluffy towels and robes. The White Company toiletries are aplenty and for a modern touch, a wall mounted screen projection of a warm fire built into the wall. Subtle downlighting fills the ceiling, adding atmospheric charm to the room.
About The Area: Chipping Camden
The first part of this towns name “Chipping” is thought to have originated from the medieval word “Chepynge” that means “long market square” which is felicitous for this beautifully kept historic village dating back as early as the 14th century.
Its high street, lined with antique and souvenir shops, bars and restaurants symbolises the affluence in this Cotswold town. In the centre is the ancient market square and trading hall dating back to 1627 where amongst other products of the day, wool was the main trading commodity.
Situated just a short walk through the gardens of the hotel, in what was the old Coach House; a quaint and interesting building. Myself and my husband both had treatments booked but due to Covid restrictions we could only enter the spa one at a time for safety reasons which we could fully understand. Suzanne, our therapist, wore full PPE, showed us around individually and due to the spa being a smaller area, the hydrotherapy pool, and steam room were still closed. The spa offers a full treatment menu using Decleor products, which Suzanne said is the best brand she had worked with.
The treatment consultation was slightly different than normal, Suzanne asked me to complete a form to enable her to apply the correct oils and treatment to suit my needs. Following this she led me to the treatment room which was very spacious where I got changed, a little different than the usual changing room with gown and towel, but a nod to the current times.
I thought I would indulge myself and selected, one of the three Decleor Aroma Wrap treatments, these are tailor made, cocooning full body envelopments – a two stage treatment featuring firstly a full body exfoliation followed with a full body massage. I opted for the Vanilla & Ylang Ylang Relaxing Hydration, a 60 minute treatment perfect for anyone with a hectic, demanding lifestyle – a treatment designed to reduce stress and tension
Suzanne was a very experienced therapist and applied my scrub firmly but gently. Following the scrub I was wrapped in a kind of cling film style sheet and left to relax and let the essential oils (vanilla and papaya extract) work their magic! Suzanne did however give me a foot massage during this period – a lovely bonus. After a quick shower to remove the scrub, I was all ready for my massage. This entire treatment, plus having a therapist like Suzanne, made my overall experience of the spa nothing less than perfect.
My husband chose the a 30 minute massage, again with Suzanne, who was the perfect therapist, she made him feel comfortable with the covid related adjustments and situation. She took into consideration his back issues and he commented on how friendly and relaxed his whole experience was.
DRINKS AND DINING
The hotel has two dining destinations; Fig – fine dining, Bistro, casual dining. Due to covid restrictions the Bistro is the location for all dining at the moment but it does offer the Fig menu alongside the Bistro menu. Our table was pre booked for 7.30pm and we were shown to our table from the bar where pre dinner drinks were the order of the day.
Locally sourced ingredients are the basis for the culinary delights that are prepared by the award-winning chefs.
To start we chose;
herb crusted beef medallions with sweet corn salsa, duck egg, rocket salad with red wine vinaigrette, along with a dish of scallop and crispy pork belly with cauliflower purée and black pudding crumbs drizzled with curry oil. For main courses we picked the 8oz hand cut sirloin steak with tomato, roasted onions, mushrooms, triple cooked chips and a peppercorn sauce. My husband opted for pan fried duck breast accompanied with Dauphinoise potatoes, stem broccoli, beetroot purée and juniper berry jus. Our meal was a delight, cooked to perfection and complimented by a bottle of Old Vine Pablo red wine which was recommended by our waiter, Bart.
Following a comfortable night sleep we had a breakfast which was pre-ordered at the reception, as the buffet style had been closed due covid restrictions. All the breakfast favourites were still available including full English (and a vegetarian version), Eggs Benedict, Royal or Florentine and Baked haddock on a muffin with hollandaise sauce.
The Fact File
The Cotswold House Hotel and Spa is around a 90-minute drive from Derby in the centre of Chipping Campden in Gloucestershire.
It is part of the Bespoke Hotel group and won the 2018 Bespoke Hotel of the Year award.
28 bedrooms and suites
2 restaurants – Fig: fine dining, Bistro: casual dining
7 treatment rooms.
Rooms from £140 B&B winter, £180 B&B summer.
Visit the hotel’s website here for more details and to book.