Gloucestershire luxury resort hotel with something for everyone
Tewkesbury Park Hotel sits on a low hill above the River Severn, a white outcrop of buildings, set in a sea of 163 green acres.
First impressions are excellent. The heart of the hotel is an 18th-century manor which a recently concluded four-year, £10 million pound renovation has sensitively developed into a stylish, bright and airy, modern country house experience.
The interiors are ‘show home’ smart, decorated to a high standard in contemporary hues, cool blues, greys and beige. The open plan entrance-atrium offers a good-sized bar area, warmed by an open fireplace, some cosy seating (where you can dine with your dog – Tewkesbury Park Hotel is very canine-friendly), magazines, games to borrow and a piano ready and waiting.
The hotel is close to the site of the famous Battle of Tewkesbury (more on this later) and its nine suites are each named after key figures in the conflict. Located in the oldest part of the building, the loveliest are truly sumptuous, beautifully furnished and decorated in creams, browns and greys. They’re really high spec – all have big TVs, Nespresso machines and luxurious Hypnos beds swaddled in fine Egyptian cotton.
The bathrooms attached to these suites are something else. If these bathrooms were bicycles, they’d be tandems, definitely made for two – twin sinks, twin Monsoon sprinklers for showering à deux and a double slipper bath.
The 85 bedrooms in the modern wing are spacious, kitted out with king-size Hypnos double or twin beds, desk and armchair. Dog-friendly rooms are available on the ground floor with patio doors providing direct outside access.
The dining experience is a central part of Tewkesbury Park’s attraction and its new restaurant, Mint, is really, really good. Even if you’re not staying in the hotel, it’s well worth seeking out – it’s clear it’s become popular as one of the best go-to dining places in the area.
The restaurant at Tewkesbury Park Hotel is an attractive, light and spacious room, with the Orangery alongside offering more intimacy. Both look out through large windows over the golf course with the Malverns and Cotswolds on the horizon. It’s a relaxed, informal place – no hushed posh restaurant tones here – offering attentive service. Well led by maitre’d Roberto, the staff are friendly, efficient and knowledgeable.
Head chef, Anuj Thakur, and his team have produced a menu of knockout dishes which changes with the season, making the most of produce which is readily available, and not shipped halfway around the world.
It’s very good value for money, too. The most expensive main course is £25, but most are under £20 and starters at £7. The wine list has plenty to tempt and at good value prices: most bottles are in the £20 to £30 range.
Everything on the menu is excellent but stand-out dishes were the Coln Valley smoked salmon and Devon crab remoulade and the Crispy Creedy Carver duck leg croquette with charred courgette tagliatelle (described as ‘’Perfect’’) as starters.
The main course Braised shin of Herefordshire beef was soft and the beef jus deliciously savoury, and was served with potato gratin, grilled heritage carrots and chestnuts. The Forest of Dean fallow deer venison was beautifully moist and came served with a venison ragu-cum-shepherd’s pie (“Fantastic!”). As you’d expect, there’s a good selection for non-meat eaters, too.
For dessert, as it’s so good, the sticky toffee pudding doesn’t stick around for very long. So it might be better instead to take your time over the cheese platter with local Cotswold organic brie, Alex James’ Blue Monday, Hereford Hop and Rosary Ash goat’s cheeses.
It goes without saying that the breakfasts are excellent, but I’ll say it anyway – the breakfasts are excellent! Locally sourced eggs, sausages and bacon are the main tasty features.
If you’re looking for something less energetic there’s a sauna, steam room and outdoor hot tub ready and waiting for you to enjoy. The spa offers bespoke facials and seaweed wraps, various massages, manicures and pedicures to make you look and feel great.
Alternatively, you might be like Mark Twain (and me) who think golf is a good walk spoiled and will set off for an unspoilt walk to explore the local area. If you need footwear, it’s available – one of the charming aspects of Tewkesbury Park is the thoughtful touches: for example, the array of colourful wellies at the entrance, available for muddy day walking.
Given its location, history buffs will be in their element. The skyline is dominated by Tewkesbury Abbey, with its fine Norman Tower. A short walk from the hotel brings you into Tewkesbury town, where half-timbered medieval houses sit alongside Tudor, Georgian and Victorian buildings.
Much of the abbey is unchanged from when it was first built in the early 12th century and while a lot of the inside is plain, it has unmissable splendours, original medieval windows and beautiful Gothic monuments.
The Battle of Tewkesbury was a major historical event, the final battle for the crown in the War of the Roses (the real-life inspiration for the Game of Thrones). The battle is now re-fought every year by thousands of re-enactors and medieval enthusiasts from all around the world as part of the Tewkesbury Medieval Festival. (The 2019 event takes place on 13 & 14 July).
From the hotel ,a pleasant walk along the banks of the Severn brings you to the fascinating Saxon-era church and chapel at Deerhurst.
Tewkesbury Park is well located for exploring further afield: the Cotswolds and the Malverns beckon, as do the nearby towns of Gloucester, Worcester and Regency Cheltenham with its famous racecourse.
The new owners of Tewkesbury Park have taken the country house hotel concept, modernised and democratised it so that’s open for all. There’s a range of accommodation and dining packages available on offer, some seasonal, some all year, to suit the depth of your pocket.
Tewkesbury Park is a place to stay and somewhere to eat (very) well, but it’s also an award-winning resort with pretty much something for everyone to enjoy – from a gym to a golf course, from tennis to squash court, from breakfast to dinner.
And after all that, at the end of a long and full day, there’s only one thing left to do…
Lincoln Green Lane,
Tel: 01684 272 300
Thinking of visiting yourself? Why not pin this post for later!
Check our roundup of our favourite UK Hotels. I’m sure Tewkesbury Park will star in the next feature.
And, if you are looking for West Country alternatives, we’d also recommend Thyme at Southrop which has a cookery school, restaurant and accommodation
Gliffaes in the Usk Valley for fishing and a Welsh Country House Hotel
Disclosure: We were guests of Tewkesbury Park Hotel. All content is editorially given and we were not required to write a positive review.