Billesley Manor Hotel
For someone who used to spend every week at some point with my bag packed travelling somewhere it's been a bit of a change staying at home and not heading off somewhere. When the lovely people at Billesley Manor Hotel invited us for a stay though we couldn't wait to get the bag packed and on our way to this hotel and spa!
Billesley Manor Hotel is a stone’s throw from the town of Stratford-upon-Avon, Shakespeare penned his comedy ‘As You Like It’ here in 1599. The hotel has just completed an extensive £5.6m refurbishment of it's buildings. There is a real mix of the interior styling. The main reception and bar areas are wooden panelled and emphasis the old history of the 16th Century building. However this is tempered with new parts which are light and airy and feel modern.
What I really liked was the decor of the rooms and some of the artifacts around. Mixing the classical style but with a modern twist to paintings etc...
Outside the hotel there are 11 acres of private grounds, an 11th century church and a Victorian-era topiary garden.
The first element to greet you as you pull up to the hotel is how grand it is. With the large grounds around you pull up at the entrance gate you can see the hotel away in the distance. You drive down a tree lined drive (and who doesn't like a tree lined drive) to see the magnificent fountain in front of the hotel spraying water into the lake. You know you're entering a special hotel for sure!
The reception area is wooden panelled and just highlights the history of the building. Making your way through reception you're greeted by the hotel bar. Set again in an area of the wood panelling you see a grand balcony which you could have imagined Shakespeare reciting one of his sonnets from. Late in the evening we had a lovely pre dinner drink here soaking up the atmosphere of the hotel and the people at it.
We made our way to the room through the twisty corridors that are the signature to any old hotel building. However our room wasn't in the old part of the hotel, this room was in a new wing. This meant the room perhaps didn't have the character of some of the older parts of the hotel. The room though was modern, clean, smartly styled and we were presented a book about the history of the Manor house which was a lovely touch. Our room overlooked the Topiary garden - which gave it a spectacular view from the windows.
After getting changed and getting ready for dinner we went to explore the hotel and gardens. At various twists and turns you continue to see the design highlights, the history and the style at every twist and turn. We absolutely loved the "As you like it room" which is a little break out room/come drawing room. How the books are fixed to the ceiling and the styling is just so on point. Looking out the window of the room onto the gardens you certainly know you are in a hotel of luxury.
We then went out to the gardens of Billesley Manor Hotel and had a wonder around the 11 acres. From every twist and turn you get a new view of the hotel and it's perfect back drop for many a photo! The Victorian-era topiary garden was a real highlight. It felt so secluded and with a beautiful pagoda at one end of it. It was set out for what looked like a wedding which must have been a idilic backdrop for anyone's big day.
After a pre-dinner drink we made our way into the wood lined dinning hall. Again continuing the styling that's throughout the hotel the restaurant is a stylish affair. We made our choices (Steak of course!) and settled down to a very tasty meal. With the hotel being close to Stratford we could off course headed here for some dinner, but we wanted to try the restaurant out and we were not disappointed.
The steak was just right, a fantastic selection of wine to wash it down and a friendly service from the staff made the evening more enjoyable. With an up coming wedding we're both trying to make sure that we don't over do it on the old waist line, so we gave desert a miss - but I'm sure that it would be to the same high standard as the starter and the main course.
The next day
We had a real comfortable and full nights sleep in the bedroom before heading down to breakfast. The breakfast offering was a a buffet for pastries, fruit and yoghurt. There was an option to have cooked breakfast as well. I avoided this but Jo went for the cooked eggs. Breakfast service was a little slow but the manager made us aware that they were really short staffed with COVID isolating. They coped well with the smaller team. It must be really hard for hotels to manage situations like this and I really felt for them and how they dealt with it.
After letting our breakfast go down we made our way to the Spa part of the hotel and a swim in the pool. Sadly we were going to book a treatment but all the appointments were taken. However we had a nice swim around and then a quick sit in the steam room and sauna. The whole Spa area looked smart and a modern facility.
After we got back to the room we headed to the check out after a relaxing overnight stay in a very lovely hotel. We were there in COVID times and with all the signs and cleaning going on you felt safe in the hotel's care at all times. After leaving we headed down to the road to the British Motor Museum. Which capped a much needed stay away!
Review Date: June 2021
Hotel Address: Alcester Rd, Alcester B49 6NF
Wifi: Free, and good speed
Sockets by Bed: Yes (also with USB points)
Parking: Yes lots although the parking spots were a bit small!
Shower: Was great!
Price: From about £150 per night
Official Star Rating: 4 Stars
TS Rating: 4 stars
TS Comment: A really lovely country hotel and spa. You feel that the whole place has a history that the hotel have played on to create a stylish and modern stay. With it being so close to Stratford Upon Avon it's perfect stay if you want to be a little away from the town centre, but close enough that you can make you way in easily. We loved the dinner, and the whole environment of the hotel. It's a shame we didn't really get to try the spa facilities but I am sure these are to the same standard. Definitely look forward to our next stay here!
More info: www.billesleymanor.com
Although the Billesley Manor Hotel gifted me the stay at the hotel, I take pride in any reviews or experience being true and honest representations of my personal views represented here. I believe this is key to maintaining a good and reputable website! If you have any further questions on this please don't hesitate to drop me an email.