Have you started to feel tired and eagerly awaiting Christmas ? With days shortening, work increasing and parties piling up, the last few weeks towards Christmas sometimes feel overwhelming. So how about getting out of the city and go relax in the countryside in a luxury hotel like Limewood Hotel ?
Mademoiselle has an inset day at the end of November every year so we now take this as an opportunity to escape London. We went to Paris and Cowley Manor the past two years and decided to return to the New Forest this year, where one of the UK best five star luxury hotels, Limewood is located.
It is set in a beautiful forest (duh !) with horses and pigs wandering freely. So the first thing you do is don your wellies (borrowed from the boots room) and go for a walk. The second thing you do is settle in your lovely room.
We had stayed in the main building previously but this time, the only available room was a Forest Hideaway Suite. The pavilions are separated by a short walk from the main building. The benefit is that you get a lounge downstairs where Mademoiselle slept and open fireplaces! The decor is forest chic, with soft white and greens and warm covers on the bed. Bathrooms have wonderful fluffy towels and rain showers. All in all very luxurious.
In the main hotel, the restaurant and the courtyard have been refurnished and are much more welcoming than before. The food by Angela Hartnett is delicious, quite simple but full of flavour. As a result though “it’s too busy” says Mr Big. Both lunches on Saturday and Sunday were fully booked with private diners in separate rooms. Not so much an escape from the city then.
Fortunately, the spa is much quieter and has a lovely hydrotherapy space with a warm pool (the main indoor pool is a bit cold said Mademoiselle and I agree), big sauna, hamam, and power water jets.
There is a true sense of luxury when you are secluded in your room and the surroundings are beautiful. We just thought that the business of the place didn’t make it as relaxing a country escape as Cowley or Lucknam Park.
My tips for your family holidays
- There are many activities for children in the New Forest so you won’t be short of ideas to entertain them.
- One of the closest is Paultons Park which has a Peppa Pigg world, perfect for toddlers. It’s only 20 minutes from the hotel. I do recommend going there at the end of November as it was really not busy and we were getting on the rides as soon as we had decided to try them.
- The indoor pool is in theory open to children only between 9:30 and 11 in the morning and 15:30 and 17:00 in the afternoon. However we have found that if Mademoiselle was just staying quietly with us on the lounges after those times, nobody would kick her out.
- The restaurant does half size portions of the main dishes (all Italian inspired so lots of pasta) and has a light graze menu perfect for small appetites
- No need to take your welly boots (only you have an unusual size) as they have plenty of them including kids’sizes.
- You can borrow bikes (with child seats or child carrier) to cirle around the area.