100%
Members Recommend
4.5
Very Good 1638 Reviews
Jetsetter Verified
This Hotel meets our standards
Our editors have been here and it has met our standards

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

Amenities

  •  Bar
  •  Free WiFi
  •  Gym
  •  Handicap Accessible
  •  Parking On Site
  •  Pet-friendly
  •  Pool
  •  Restaurant
  •  Room Service
  •  Spa
Disclaimer: This content was accurate at the time the hotel was reviewed. Please check our partner sites when booking to verify that details are still correct.
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Overview

Charming 15th-century country retreat set on 90 acres of Cotswold countryside, a two-hour drive from London

The Look

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.

Beyond

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

Ellenborough Park
Southam Road
Cheltenham, GL52 3NJ United Kingdom

Reviews

4.5 Very Good 1638 Reviews
Great Hotel, Great Views, Great Service
Reviewed 4 days ago

We stayed here for a short break, when visiting Cheltenham Racecourse for the April Meeting. A great historic building, very clean and with friendly staff. Our room was fantastic with plenty of space and great views. We used the shuttle service down to the racecourse which was great. We ate in the Horse-box restaurant which had great food and service. We did find breakfast very busy, and found ourselves sitting in the Horse Box some distance from the main restaurant. The team insisted on bringing the food fresh from the kitchen, which was nice, but a little slow as how busy they were. We had a great time and plan to visit again, a very beautiful place.

They Let Themselves Down More Than The Guests ...
Reviewed 5 days ago

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This should be a great hotel, fact. We had no plans to come here, but circumstances brought us here last minute. Plus there was a Easter break offer which made the price reasonable.

The hotel itself is very attractive. But there it ends.

Breakfast was chaotic. I appreciate they were busy, but they knew they would be busy, so get organised. And yet again, a nasty luke warm buffet breakfast. I refused it, and requested a freshly made English breakfast. But I wasted my time. It was the same cold buffet put on my plate and 2 freshly cooked eggs not in the style ordered. The following breakfasts were the same. Get breakfast wrong and you may as well give up. Nothing worse than eating food just for the sake of it.

Our room was pleasant. But we were not upgraded for booking directly on the hotel website. Again, I appreciate it does state "if there's availability" - but there was. However, the mini-suite was a good size, and a good sized bathroom. Certainly slept well. Not sure why such a lack of TV channels especially when so many are on Freeview, and obviously free to watch and stream. And the usual nonsense with the shower where the water runs under the glass door and floods the bathroom. Strange how few establishments get this right.

We only dined in the hotel on one night. That was enough. Very mediocre meal with average slow service. Petty little portions. When we paid the bill the waiter said "was the service not good?" because he noticed we had not tipped. No, the service was not good, and neither was the meal. But no waiter has the right to ask such a question with a sarcastic tone of voice.

Biggest annoyance was our patio had 11 half smoked cigarettes thrown on the floor by the previous occupants. I requested this to be cleaned. It never was. That was 3 days of someone's cigarettes littering our outdoor space. Not acceptable.

So, I would say it's a nice hotel, but it needs to get a grip and learn about service and cleaning, and perhaps serve a decent hot meal ?! Not only are they letting down the guests, but they are letting down themselves. I'm very surprised the hotel is featured on the Mr & Mrs Smith website. Usually you can trust their recommendations. Perhaps it's time to change the management ?
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Overpriced and not 5 star.
Reviewed 6 days ago

We stayed at Ellenborough Park overnight for my partners birthday this April. The hotel looks absolutely stunning when you arrive but we experienced the following:

- an outdated room with a smelly fridge
- a hotel that really should not be described as a spa hotel. The spa room was tiny with a small jacuzzi and 4 loungers. It is very impersonal if you have 4 people there. The shower was not working and ran continuously, the jacuzzi was not working and every time it needed to be switched on you had to get out (soaking wet) and walk to reception to ask them to turn it on centrally;
- The male changing rooms were filthy with dirty towels everywhere and urine around the toilets;
- Our room was not cleaned as apparently we were forgotten about; We came back to the room to find our used towels still in the bathtub and nothing cleaned even though someone had been in to replace the water;
- The food at the restaurant really wasn’t much to shout home about. The service was questionable. Our waitress told us to go for a fish starter which she said was lovely but when we subsequently disliked it she said she didn’t eat fish. This was not the impression she gave beforehand!
- The morning of our last stay I moved some things around in the bathroom and found used make up sponges from the previous occupiers still there. The room had obviously not been properly cleaned before we stayed there.

I don’t ordinarily post bad reviews but we complained at the time and showed pictures as we were very shocked. We were told we’d be notified of the outcome of their internal investigation. I am still waiting for a response.

What should have been an enjoyable and luxurious stay was nothing short of a continued mishap which really wasn’t addressed well. Given how much it costs to stay at the hotel this is disappointing.

The night prior to ellenborough Park we stayed at the frogmill inn not too far away. This is a 3 star hotel and miles above and I would highly recommend staying at this one.

Lovely hotel, but reserve a table if you want dinner
Reviewed 1 week ago

This characterful hotel just outside Cheltenham is a lovely place to stay. Room 6 is elegantly comfortable with a great bed and bathroom. Staff are welcoming and friendly.

Such a shame to be told on arrival that there were no tables available for dinner but that I could have room service or visit one of the many nice restaurants in town! In the end a place was found for their hungry guest to eat.

After a good night’s sleep and a fine breakfast I’m happy to give a second chance and will return, but making sure that a table for dinner is booked in advance.

Fantastic Spa Break
Reviewed 1 week ago

Ellenborough Park is an amazing hotel set in wonderful grounds overlooking Cheltenham racecourse.We had such a relaxing Spa Break, treatments were excellent followed by an afternoon in the spa itself. (Just a shame the spa is all in one room as it can soon feel overcrowded). The heated outdoor pool was warm & inviting.
Our room overlooking the pool was lovely, very comfortable beds, walk-in wardrobe, great shower & bath, marble twin sinks. Dinner at The Horse Box was very enjoyable.
Breakfast was the only let down. Staff didn’t appear to be on top of things when the restaurant became busy. The self-service hot food was not kept topped up & table service was quite slow.
However, all in all we had a wonderful weekend & will definitely be returning.