Escape to the country this weekend with a trip to the stunning
Hambleton Hall, Rutland
Words Catherine Hales
Travelling in style and comfort is an essential part of a weekend away; luckily, there are few cars as stylish and comfortable as the new Volvo XC90. The large SUV is a perfect mix of minimalist Scandi design, high-quality materials and practicality. The exterior is elegantly put together for such a big car while the interior is as luxurious as can be, boasting excellent Bowers & Wilkins speakers and an iPad-like screen in the console. All this, along with excellent safety features, smart steering and great handling make a journey in the Volvo XC90 a seriously enjoyable part of the trip.
My guest and I are put up in the Noel Coward room, an enchanting double with wisteria wallpaper and an enormous bath – and we are thrilled to hear that the famous writer did actually stay there once. The hotel itself is stunning: Victorian with an eclectic mix of opulent country house and home comfort throughout. In the summer guests can enjoy the outdoor pool and those looking for a little more privacy can book the Croquet Pavilion, a cottage adjacent to the hotel.
The Michelin-starred restaurant at Hambleton Hall has always been a draw in and of itself. During our stay we decide to indulge ourselves and choose the Tasting Menu for dinner. This begins with a fantastic concotion of mushroom, egg and bacon served in a tea cup and ends with an almond and amaretto soufflé that is lighter than air and comes accompanied by honey and quince ice cream. Each dish in between is truly excellent and the charming sommelier suggests pairings for every course. We retire, full and contented, wishing we could return tomorrow.
WHAT TO DO
Hambleton Hall is situated next to Rutland Water and the hotel is happy to hire bikes on guests’ behalf, arrange a day of sailing or advise on walks – the village of Hambleton is picturesque and well worth exploring.
Hambleton Hall is easy to reach from London by train in under two hours (Kings Cross to Oakham)
Rooms start from £265 for two people inclusive of dinner, accommodation, breakfast, morning paper and vat
01572 756991; hambletonhall.com