Park House Hotel
What We Love
- The grounds are home to tennis courts, a croquet lawn, a bowling green, a golf course and an outdoor pool (all free to use)
- Dining on classic British dishes flavored with herbs grown in the kitchen garden
What To Know
- A car is recommended in these parts; the hotel is a 20-minute cab ride from the nearest train station
- The closest town (for shops, pubs and restaurants) is a 40-minute walk
- The heated outdoor pool is open from April through September (weather permitting)
- Sublime spa is located next to the hotel in a converted barn
- Free WiFi
- Golf Course
- Parking On Site
- Room Service
Set in a sleepy village in West Sussex, less than a two-hour drive from London, Park House Hotel is a country pad that delivers a Best of British experience in spades. The crunchy gravel drive leads to a cozy lobby complete with wellington boots and walking maps, the drawing room hums with the sound of a crackling fire and clinking china teacups, and the manicured grounds are home to a croquet lawn, tennis courts, a six-hole golf course and a heated outdoor pool. The family-run property was a high society hot spot in the 1950s, attracting Indian maharajas who would play polo at nearby Cowdray Park. Now it attracts urbanites with a taste for the great outdoors, a penchant for country pursuits and a need for some rural R&R.
Bed and Bath
The light-flooded rooms are comfortingly traditional and are kitted out with lacquered furniture, sink-into armchairs and chaise longues. The overall feel is calming, but the fabrics are busy: Bold floral flourishes are everywhere, from the bedding and walls to the curtains that frame views of the grounds and South Downs National Park. Quirky room layouts are a jumble of nooks, crannies, alcoves and oak beam ceilings, all harking back to the hotel’s former life as a farmhouse. Bathrooms feature separate tubs and showers and are stocked with Aromatherapy Associates products.
You could quite happily reach a state of bucolic seclusion without leaving the grounds of the hotel. For active types, the tennis courts, six-hole golf course, croquet lawn, bowling green and outdoor pool are all free to use from the end of April through September (weather permitting). The PH2O spa is housed in a separate outbuilding, and the facilities (indoor pool, sauna, steam room, smart gym and mini–foot spas) are top-notch. In the evening you’re encouraged to help yourself to a pre-dinner drink from the honor system bar and dine in the glass conservatory restaurant overlooking the grounds. Classic English dishes (flavored with herbs and greens from the kitchen garden) dominate the menu, and the drink list features wines from West Sussex vineyards
How to Get There
I brought my mother and my partner here as a gift for afternoon tea. It was a wonderful experience. A warm welcome on arrival, followed by a truly exceptional selection of sandwiches, cakes and proper loose leaf tea. Everything was perfect, fresh and tasty. Both my mother and my partner have taken afternoon tea in many places and both agreed it was the best they have ever been served - “even better than The Grand Hotel, Brighton” was one quote. The hotel is in a lovely setting; the tea was served in a lounge surrounded by elegant decor. That’s birthday presents sorted out for next year.
We celebrated our Golden Wedding here in September. Amy was a great help in planning the event, which all our guests thoroughly enjoyed. The rooms in the main building were exceptionally comfortable and well-appointed, and in view of the inclement weather we spent a lovely afternoon in the indoor pool and spa.
Everything was efficiently and unobtrusively organised, and we progressed smoothly from a champagne and canapé reception to an excellent meal in The Barn for 14 people, all of whose individual food preferences were catered for. Afterwards we continued our relaxing evening in front of the roaring fire in the lounge.
We did not realise how busy the hotel was until we saw the many other guests at breakfast. All the staff were charming and helpful throughout our stay and we are so glad we chose to have our celebration at the Park House Hotel.
Tucked away under the South Downs this really is a hidden gem. Beautiful setting and the day we went the weather was glorious. Staff are very professional and allow guests to enjoy their stay. Not once-over powering and very helpful. Private parties were being catered for (a wedding and a 50th birthday) but you wouldn't have guessed that the hotel was catering for so many people. Highly recommend
We have used this hotel a few times for a team awayday - what a wonderful spot for a day-long meeting, followed by a game of bowls on the lawn as the evening sets in, drinks outside and a superb meal. The service is first class and friendly, and the setting is quintessentially English. A gem.
We celebrated our diamond wedding with a family weekend at the end of August in glorious weather. Park House was an ideal location with facilities to suit all age groups in our party of nine. The dinner menu was imaginative and the food very tasty. The breakfast spread was impressive with a large array of fruit and cereals followed by a variety of delicious cooked dishes, including eggs benedict, florentine and royale as well as the more usual offerings. Lemon curd was a nice additional touch.
The service in the restaurant and reception and around the pool could not be faulted. All the staff we met were friendly, attentive and efficient. We were particularly impressed at dinner time when an even larger party than ours was also being served on both evenings but things went like clockwork as far as we were concerned.
The peaceful hotel location at the foot of the South Downs is ideal and the extensive grounds are very well maintained. A wedding on the Saturday did not interfere with the the level of service provided to residents. We were made to feel special.
Other reviews have commented on the restaurant noise penetrating into room 1 but we did not find that a problem.
We must find another occasion to celebrate for a return visit before long!