What We Love
- The hotel’s epic history
- The Canadian hot tubs in the spa
- Pottering the grounds and playing lord and lady of the manor
What To Know
- Guests can arrive by helicopter if they wish
- The rooms are named after former guests, from Charlie Chaplin to Prince Albert to Rudyard Kipling
- Heston Blumenthal’s famous Fat Duck restaurant is a 15-minute drive away
- Free WiFi
- Kids Club
- Parking On Site
- Room Service
This sprawling neoclassical country pad is so much more than just a pretty face; its rich history is filled with epic parties and visits from Queen Victoria, President Roosevelt and Winston Churchill (and was where the British political scandal between Christine Keeler and John Profumo took place). The 38 bedrooms are elegant, floral affairs with handmade queen-sized beds, scented Asprey toiletries and views over the rolling grounds. Dress the part for an evening meal in the grand Terrace Dining Room or up the luxe factor a notch and entertain in one of the decadent, gilded private dining rooms.
In the Area
The house is set on more than 376 acres of beautifully tended National Trust gardens and woodlands with views that stretch to the River Thames. The Pavilion Spa is hidden within the grounds and is home to a heated outdoor pool, an indoor pool, six treatment rooms, outdoor Canadian hot tubs and whirlpool spas. Hop on the flotilla at the Cliveden Boathouse for a relaxing Champagne cruise. With all the pampering, there’s little chance guests will want to leave, but if they do, then Heston Blumenthal’s three Michelin-star restaurant The Fat Duck is just up the road in Bray.
How to Get There
I was fortunate enough to be treated to an overnight stay at the hotel on the 13th February. I had been looking forward to the trip for a long time but prior to going for some reason I decided to check the reviews on Trip Advisor and to be honest was a little alarmed by some of the things I read. Needless to say I needn't have worried and the trip was everything that I thought it would be. I can only assume that those who have left scathing reviews either have a hidden agenda, got really unlucky or are just desperately hard to please pampered types who will deliberately pick fault and whinge when the slightest little thing doesn't go their way ?
On arrival we were met by a very friendly and down to earth Porter who immediately put us at ease as he rushed out to take our bags from us. We were a little early for check-in so were shown to the Residents Lounge where we were served some amazing cocktails with a fabulous view by a very friendly but nonintrusive barman (apologies I did not get your name). We were then shown to our room ('Clutton') by a very friendly and informative receptionist before heading off to the Spa.
After a quick dip, a hot tub and a sauna (with actor Ross Kemp who also happened to be staying at the hotel) we indulged in some Spa Treatments. I had an amazing 45 minute hot oil massage from Saffron who after a consultation concentrated on my lower back and neck and shoulders before making me so relaxed that I must admit I nodded off for the last 5 minutes or so ! My partner had an 'Oskia Glow on the Go' Facial which she says was the best that she's had. After returning to our room for some bubbles in the hot tub provided on our patio we headed to dinner in the main dining room.
What a treat this was.....oysters to start, followed by an amazing Roe Deer Wellington and to finish a Macadamia Nut Parfait which I must say has to be one of the best desserts I've ever had ! The service was impeccable and attentive without being intrusive and I really enjoyed the whole dining experience. We then returned to the Residents Lounge for a night cap before calling it a night.
After a great nights sleep we had opted for breakfast in our room which arrived on time and was superb. We both had the Astor cooked breakfast which came with a choice from the Continental Buffet too and included some of the best homemade Granola that I've had. After checking out feeling pretty full we finished off our trip with a walk around the beautiful grounds to try and burn off some calories !
We had an amazing trip to Cliveden and would definitely recommend it to anyone, hopefully we'll return one day and do it all again.
Having enjoyed a wonderful wedding at Cliveden in October 2017, my family and I decided to celebrate Christmas there with what we thought would be a delicious afternoon tea. We remain so disappointed today with what was supposed to be a lovely treat, that two months later I have joined Trip Advisor in order to write a review. For £50 a head we were expecting something pretty spectacular, and I can only describe the food as very ordinary. The bread used to make the finger sandwiches was no better than that found in any of the local supermarkets or 3rd rate bakeries. Where was the granary bread, wholemeal loaves or even brioche used at any of the top London hotels charging more or less the same price as Cliveden? The sandwich fillings themselves were thinly spread, the cranberry in the turkey/cranberry option so overly sweetened it should have been in the cake selection. These too were poor quality and uninspiring, the sort of cakes that come from a 3rd rate bakery, not created by a first class chef. One of the cakes was still covered in plastic film when presented to us. The highlight of the meal, for want of a better expression, were the scones which were light, fluffy and very tasty. They hardly saved the day, but were the only item on the cake stand enjoyed by all. Service was poor and extremely slow, and there was no chance to complain before we left as the manager was nowhere to be found. Sadly the state of what must have been a beautiful Christmas tree summed up our hugely disappointing experience; with 10 days to go before the big day the branches were already dry, drooping and miserable looking, lending an almost desolate air to the Great Hall. My overall rating was based on our Christmas tea experience, not our wedding.
After staying the night celebrating my Husband’s Birthday with teenage son and paying an eye watering £1200 for the night I can honestly say I won’t be back.
After seeing wonderful reviews I decided to visit Cliveden as apposed to the usual Ritz for this monumental celebration (husbands 60th) we were greeted by a receptionist who showed us our room, forgetting to mention the jacuzzi outside (which was extra) lit up at night! The room wasn’t as spacious as I’d expected for the price. They left a balloon on the table, and a few bits of fruit with bottled water.
Dinner was good not exceptional, wine very overpriced being 5x the retail price. There was no happy birthday slice of cake, no complementary glass of bubbles only a lonely birthday card left on the table.
The other patrons were either pretending to be well heeled and terribly stuffy and pretentious
As a National Trust building I would definitely recommend a day visit for a walk and history talks given during the day but for a stay over I wouldn’t bother! Take your money where you are going to be celebrated and get a bit more value
I have been following the hotel for a while after hearing about it from Chris Evens magnificent 7 trips and via Tatler and whilst I was in the UK in 2018 I was keen to visit. As it happened a couple of weeks prior to my visit I was invited to a gala dinner at the hotel which provided a magnificent setting at the height of summer with drinks outside followed by a formal dinner. A great calling card for Brand Britain given this event was for a mixed British and American crowd. On that occasion the only negative was that no one had thought of a good place to take pictures and of course taking pictures in front of the fireplace in the main hall is a magnificent idea but the lighting proved far from helpful.
Independently I had a planned a morning to explore the gardens and parkland followed by lunch at the André Garrett Restaurant at Cliveden House. This also coincided with one of my last days it the UK so I felt it would be a bit of a treat. Afterwards I was heading to another engagement. I arrived and was shown to my table yet then it took 15 minutes before anyone gave me menus or took my drinks order. I managed to order a juice and was given menus but 20 minutes later and no one had taken my order at which stage I had to give up and leave, partly as I had wasted so much time and I had another engagement to get to and partly as I was really quite disappointed by the service. I understand for some people this may be a treat they have planned all year for and wish for the experience to drag on but I was by myself and simply wanted to enjoy a good meal and spoil myself. Also as a diner by myself nothing was offered to make me more comfortable such as perhaps some literature etc. I felt they could have been a bit perceptive as to their clientele, each person has a different agenda and wishes.
They explained that their procedure is such by which they add a lot of time to their serving style. They kindly did not charge me for my drink but I would have preferred to be able to have a reservation for the evening and have returned to have dinner that night at my cost but apparently there was no availability.
I hope to return on another occasion but on this occasion was rather let down.
The surroundings are stunning but the management can’t keep up with the sudden increase in business since ‘the wedding’. Rooms are acceptable but dirty plates left in corridor for over 24 hours. Fabulous historic building but many staff seem to hold guests in contempt, not a good advert for British service and I’m sure these members of staff wouldn’t like to be treated this way if they were guests. No doormen on arrival because they were ‘too busy’! Does the hotel offer a discount if some of these services are missing then?
André Garrett restaurant was exceptional with fabulous food and service.
Management must improve staff training and courteousness before this hotel can compete in the deluxe five star category. Shame. You can only trade off your historic reputation for so long.