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Thursday, 12 June 2014

Review - Dormy House Hotel and Spa

Like many Londoners with a fine love of the city and its bustling, eclectic ways, there comes a time when I yearn for a hearty dose of escapism in the countryside.

I start to crave rambling, tree-lined walks, childlike frolics in lush fields, quaint farm shops selling exciting organic cheeses and crackling log fires that beckon weary urbanized souls in search of rural solace.

It was during one of these moments that I booked a trip with a loved one to Dormy House  - a luxury boutique hotel with a brand new spa, nestled within the alluring green pastures of the Cotswolds, high above the historical village of Broadway.

When we arrived, weary-eyed from the journey and full of expectation, we were welcomed into an inviting reception area, which was the perfect example of charming countryside-chic.

This recently refurbished 17th century farmhouse still boasts the same striking stonework and wooden ceiling beams of the original building, so the effect is truly magnificent.

We were then shown to our 'Top Notch Room' - a homely haven of comfort with an enticingly plush king size bed, ample-sized sofa, free wi-fi, luxuriously fluffy bathrobes, soft slippers, iPad, seriously slick flat screen TV and a Nespresso coffee maker - perfect for rousing sleepy city-dwellers to a more alert state.

Freshly baked shortbread and crisp red apples were laid out temptingly on a sleek desk, along with a helpful information pack, explaining the hotel's amenities and services.

I especially adored the endearing finishing touches, which gave the room a warm yet stylish feel, such as the joyously kitsch owl doorstop with the words 'Nesting. Please do not disturb' embroidered on one side of its plump body and 'Out having a hoot. Please make up my room' on the other. I later found out that this charming character was handmade by eco-designer Sarah Ward, who uses recycled fabrics to make her adorable home accessories.

How could you say no to that face?
There was also a spacious balcony overlooking the lush Vale of Evesham, complete with tasteful outdoor furniture and cozy blankets for chilly evenings.

After an invigorating power shower with the foamy aid of divine Temple Spa bathtime products, we made our way to dinner in the hotel's very own high end gastro pub, The Potting Shed - famed for its hearty British cooking and unpretentious, relaxed atmosphere.

Our starters consisted of a flavoursome game terrine with watercress and the best chicken and duck liver pate I have ever had the pleasure of devouring in 10 seconds. Mains were a glorious celebration of rich rustic fayre and involved a creamy chicken and leek pie and a sultry slab of pan-roasted ribeye, pleasingly placed beside some hand cut chips and locally-grown organic spinach.

Oh lordy...
We finished off our feisty feast with a substantial sliver of dark chocolate tart and a happy trio of homemade ice creams, which tasted as if they had been lovingly churned in an idyllic riverside barn by rosy-cheeked milkmaids donning floaty gingham dresses.

Come to daddeh...
After such a bountiful meal, we decided to roll off with our food comas to Dormy House's gorgeous yellow lounge, where we lounged in front of a crackling open log fire, whilst nursing a couple of much-needed after-dinner drinks.

Somebody smell burning...?
We also spent time in Dormy House's red and blue lounges - which were equally elegant and also designed by renowned London interior design team, Todhunter Earle.

The next day, after waking from a blissful slumber in a ridiculously comfortable bed, we padded down to The Garden Room for breakfast and were greeted with a plentiful buffet consisting of various cheeses, meats, fresh bread and seasonal fruits.

Being a 'breakfast is the most important meal of the day' type of person, I decided to indulge in the buffet and order an extra cooked dish of kipper with a poached egg too. Well, I did have a sprightly day ahead of me involving spa frolics and fresh country air - which is apparently meant to make you hungry.

Such buttery joy...
I must admit that dining in this artistically-designed room, overlooking a romantic, well-manicured garden, whilst gorging on truly exquisite food has to be one of my most finest breakfasting moments in a hotel...and I have had many of those I can tell you.

The perfect place for a proposal...or just pie
With slightly rounded tums, we plodded down towards the breathtaking House Spa for a rejuvenating soak in the glamorous outdoor Jacuzzi before swimming a few laps (OK, bobbing up and down) in the 16 metre long infinity pool. I then (with immense difficulty) pried myself away from this heavenly place to make my way to the treatment room area for my 'Really Relaxing' 60 minute full body massage, passing a very opulent looking Veuve Clicquot champagne nail bar along the way...

The best manicure of your life...
My treatment began with a warm welcome, a cool glass of fresh juice and a hot face towel, before my sleepy self was pummeled, kneaded and firmly stroked to a blissful yet invigorated state by my experienced therapist.

A deeply-nourishing, hand-blended oil was used, containing lavender to calm, black pepper to revitalize and myrrh for its restorative effects on the skin.

Afterwards, my serene self was led to a sun-drenched outdoor area, overlooked by the spa's lavish lounge - complete with a roaring wood-burning stove centerpiece, where I was presented with a glass of water and a refreshing raspberry sorbet.

Why is it always the little touches that make such a difference?

On our journey back to the big smoke, feeling mirthful and re-energized, we knew we would miss this soul-soothing sanctuary in the captivating Cotswolds countryside, with its friendly staff, eclectic little touches and beautiful rooms that tell an enchanted story of another era...


  1. What a lovely trip out in the country! The hotel you stayed in is definitely fabulous, to say the least. The modern interiors and decor are all beautiful. The food looks amazing too, but what really got me were the desserts. Yum! Thank you so much for sharing that! All the best!

    Jeff Riley @ Happy Guest Lodge

  2. Thank you for your lovely comments Jeff. I'm so glad you enjoyed my review! 😊

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