Derby Manor Hotel
If you are looking for a chic escape in Bournemouth, this is it. Bournemouth has always been perfect long weekend territory; long sandy beaches, a typical British seaside town feel, with a pier and Victorian architecture, but also with a decent culinary and nightlife scene too, and of course, the beautiful Dorset countryside surrounds it. The ideal spot to relax and make the most of what Bournemouth has to offer is Derby Manor Hotel, a beautiful Edwardian Hotel with a contemporary twist. Bournemouth is just over a 2-hour drive from London or just under 2 hours by train.
The luxury hotel is billed as an Edwardian Hotel with a contemporary twist, and you can really see why; the recent refurbishment has left a classy, opulent feel that nevertheless has a definite modern edge – think relaxing rather than stuffy. The landscaped gardens are magnificent. There is a fine dining restaurant and a spacious bar area. The service is formal and traditional, complimentary car valet is included, and there’s even a luxury car hire service where you can make use of a Mustang or Mercedes SLK, among others. They celebrate special events during the year well here; Valentines and Christmas are done to perfection, and the New Years’ Eve Ball is definitely one to add to your calendar.
There are 11 rooms and suites; each is unique in its own way, but all are exquisitely designed with classic period features throughout. The Gold Cup would definitely be one of my favorites, with a luxurious “roll-top” bath on a raised platform in the main room and garden views. It has a romantic feel which I’m sure is why it also moonlights as the honeymoon suite. All the rooms are fitted with beautiful deep pile carpets and Versace-inspired furniture and include a 40 inch television, tea, and coffee-making facilities, complimentary Wi-Fi, and a spacious ensuite bathroom, robe, slippers, and complimentary toiletries.
Restaurants & Bars
The Shades Restaurant has an excellent reputation and offers a delicious and impeccably presented a la carte menu, as well as a set lunch and dinner menu and Sunday lunch. There is also a popular 5-course tasting menu, and in the summer months, the BBQ offers substantially more than a sausage and a burger (though a slightly finer version of these are included too!). The Derby Bar is the perfect relaxing setting for an aperitif or an after-dinner coffee.
Pool & Activities
As a guest of the hotel, you receive access to a swimming pool, gym, and sauna at a neighboring hotel for a small fixed fee. You are just a 10-minute walk from Bournemouth’s huge sandy beach, and 5 minutes away, you will find the infamous clifftop walk with its Victorian cliff lifts. The town center is a pleasant 20-minute stroll away, and there’s an aquarium, the pier as well as several museums. If you wish to explore the New Forest, you are only a 10-minute drive away.
Try the afternoon tea, especially created by the hotel’s very own pastry chef; the presentation is simply divine, and add to this a selection of loose teas or even a glass of prosecco, and you have a real treat.
Versace eat your heart out – there is nowhere more glam in Bournemouth!
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