What We Love
- The Jetsetter rate includes full English breakfast and access to the spa and gym
- Stunning 15th-century architecture and many original features
- Indian-themed spa with seven treatment rooms and sensation showers
- The boot room offers free boots and jackets to hire for country walks in the surrounding area
What To Know
- It's a two-hour drive from London
- Located at the foot of Cleeve Hill (the highest point in the Cotswolds), so expect to do some walking
- There are newer parts of hotel; request a room in the main house for 15th-century authenticity
- The outdoor pool is closed between December and March
- Parking is free
- Free WiFi
- Parking On Site
- Room Service
A quintessential English country retreat, Ellenborough Park is a 15th-century manor house set in 90 acres grounds in the bucolic Cotswolds, a two-hour drive from London. This impressive estate oozes character and class; the original building is cut from traditional sand-colored Cotswold stone, and early Tudor features include towers and turrets. Inside, the main house features oak-paneled walls, patterned rugs and hidden snugs accessible through castle-like doors. A painting of Lord Ellenborough hangs in one of the many chill-out areas. Be sure to check out the stunning woodland mural on the walls of the main staircase.
Bed and Bath
The 62 guestrooms, created by British interior designer Nina Campbell, have a charming country house style. Many feature four-poster beds (all the Hypnos beds were custom-made for Ellenborough Park) and statement wallpaper or paint colors in bold stripes, metallic florals or deep reds. The rooms are spread across four buildings, including the historic main house and a series of newer outbuildings. Some Deluxe Rooms come with private patios leading to the outdoor pool, and some of the Classic Rooms are split-level and feature upstairs bathrooms with large walk-in showers. All bathrooms are stocked with posh Penhaligon’s products.
Go for a hike up Cleeve Hill (the track runs opposite the hotel), and then return to indulge in a traditional afternoon tea in the Great Hall. With its exposed brick walls, beam ceilings, chandeliers and colorful paintings, it’s a grand setting to gorge on dainty cakes and sandwiches. For dinner, the wood-paneled Beaufort Dining Room serves posh British fare (Hereford beef fillet with fondant potatoes, Wye Valley asparagus with poached pheasant egg), or head to the Brasserie for a more relaxed dining experience. Breakfast can be taken in any of the dining rooms (the Library’s stained glass windows provide a great view over the surrounding fields). There’s an outdoor heated pool for a summertime dip, a petite but pleasant fitness center and an Indian-themed spa with seven treatment rooms and sensation showers.
In the Area
Grab a pair of free walking boots and head to the nearby Cotswold Way, a long-distance trail that covers 100 miles between Chipping Campden and Bath. A 10-minute drive leads to the magnificent Sudeley Castle, once home to Catherine Parr, the last wife of Henry VIII; the award-winning gardens are a must-see. If you’re traveling with children, the lovely Cotswold Farm Park makes a fun daytime activity (check for seasonal farming demonstrations). Stratford-upon-Avon, the birthplace of William Shakespeare, is an hour’s drive north. The hotel overlooks historic Cheltenham Racecourse, and the pretty spa town of Cheltenham, with its Regency architecture and cute boutiques, is a 10-minute drive away.
How to Get There
Most amazing afternoon tea for our anniversary, first class service, food was delicious as was the tiramisu tea...thoroughly recommend to all and special thanks to our server (whose name I ashamedly can’t remember) for a lovely afternoon.
First of all, the hotel is beautiful. Very impressed with our room, which was very spacious and tastefully decorated. Overall, the staff were friendly. However, our only disappointment was when we ordered from the onsite pub. My meal was inedible and sent back. We weren’t very impressed with the service received, and didn’t receive a refund for my meal (£17). This resulted in driving to central Cheltenham and eating elsewhere, thus incurring added expense on top of the meal paid for and not eaten. However, the breakfast was very nice with a good range of food (located in the restaurant area). Therefore, I would recommend the restaurant but not the pub. Another downside was that the pool and spa facilities were out of order for the weekend, quite disappointing as I had been looking forward to using these. Overall a pleasant experience and would probably return.
We were guests at a wedding that was held there and stayed a couple of nights. The whole experience was faultless from check-in to check-out and everything in between. The room we had was excellent, the food very good and the staff were efficient but unobtrusive. The setting is superb, Thoroughly recommended; I'd give it 6 out of 5 if I could?
We came here with the plan to have a complete relax and we were not disappointed.
Our booking included a one night stay, evening meal at the Horse Box, breakfast and afternoon tea.
There was a wedding when we arrived, and having read previous reviews we were apprehensive about this. The only disturbance were some very rowdy guests that seemed to think they owned the whole hotel whilst we were eating at the Horse Box. Thankfully there were some very attentive staff on shift who meant that we were able to enjoy a really relaxing evening meal. Our meal at the Horse Box was second to none, the food was delicious, service was special and the setting was really lovely and romantic. Considering that the races had finished the day before the staff didn't act fatigued! Truly professional.
Actually the Hotel staff were always welcoming and accommodating. Very professional and were calming and relaxing. It makes such a difference to our experience when staff are calming and not in a rush. This kind of service really stands out.
Our room (number 3) was truly lovely and looked out onto the grounds with the race course visible in the backdrop. It was very special, and had some lovely features. The hotel itself also had some incredible features (some of the building dating from Tudor times), with spectacularly wonky floors and door frames. Please be mindful of this if mobility is challenging! The character of the hotel is charming.
Breakfast was in a lovely room with high ceilings and a beautiful large window letting in lots of light and fantastic wood panelled walls. Our only blight was someone insistent on having 'WhatsApp' continuously going off very loudly despite her phone being on the table between her and her husband. Unfortunately nothing can be done about it.
Afternoon tea was lovely, tasty and very special. It was truly lovely to sit in-front of the huge fire place. This was perfect after we had spent a little time walking around the grounds and investigating little nooks and crannies about the hotel. Lovely grounds that look particularly magical and perfect for weddings.
The spa was perfectly sized for us and despite using it both days we only shared it a couple of times with other couples. We used the open air pool a couple of times, and again only shared this once with a couple of very well behaved boys. The only challenge was getting out without a gust of wind reminding you just how cold it was!
A fabulous stay, and we would definitely recommend staying here again.
A truly magical stay.
Overall for us the staff made the experience. Nothing was too much trouble and it actually felt like they genuinely cared about us. Not something you can fake.
You really need to go here. It was very special and fantastic, especially if you can get a special deal.
We had a fantastic 3-night stay and dined in The Restaurant each evening enjoying a 3-course dinner. The food was excellent, the service was impeccable with the right balance of attention from staff whilst being allowed to relax in the setting. The sommelier David was able to make suggestions to pair with our food choices and we appreciated his advice. Breakfast was table service both for our second and final mornings. Food served at breakfast was of an equally high standard. Throughout staff were friendly and had time to chat to all guests. An excellent and memorable stay.