We have in the past stayed at the sister hotel, the Royal Castle in Dartmouth so decided to try this one. The bar is set very high from the Royal Castle. All our expectations were met & exceeded.
We arrived just before mid-day on a Sunday & Dunster was heaving. Despite that we were able to get a free parking place on the High St, a few yards from the hotel. However, the hotel had advised us of other options at the time of booking so parking was not a concern. Although check in is not till 2pm our room was ready for us, which got the stay off to a flying start. We had opted for a 4 poster room which I strongly urge if you can run to it. They are fabulous. We had room 17 with the high beamed cathedral ceiling & original stone fireplace , a huge room, furnished in perfect baronial period style for the age of building. This room totally has the WOW factor. Good sized bathroom with toiletries, robes & towels to the usual high standard we have come to expect from these hotels. Great shower, perfect temperature control. The room overlooked the pretty innner courtyard & was very peaceful.
The hotel is ancient & its features & integrity have been preserved both inside & out. It is stunning. The secret garden is absolutely beautiful with lovely views of the castle. I can't wait to visit in the Spring or Summer to enjoy that.
We sampled the various bars during our stay, all are cosy with log fires burning. House Merlot is one of the best we've sampled anywhere. Bar prices reasonable. We dined out as we like to try different places but the food looked good. We were made very welcome in the main bar by the manager Tim, despite the place being very busy, he made time to make us feel as valued guests & it is that which makes us return to a place like this.
Breakfast was again to the standard we have come to expect & did not disappoint. We both opted for the full English which was freshly cooked to perfection. There were a good choice of alternatives but who can resist an Exmoor breakfast ? Also the same great selection of fresh fruits from the buffet as I enjoy at their other hotel. Blueberries, strawberries, raspberries.
I would also like to mention Chris, one of the supervisors, who took time & offered to show us round the other 4 poster rooms to help us decide which one we may chose for our next visit. I still think I prefer our room 17 but the others, although not so vast, do have picturesque views over main Dunster High St. Each one is large with a seating area & decorated & furnished in a different style but always in keeping with the age of the hotel. No bland cookie cutter decor here! All the 4 poster rooms are on the 1st floor. I also saw one of the standard rooms & that was very attractive too.
If you are looking for a stay in lovely Dunster, look no further. You will be sure of a warm welcome at the Lutterall Arms & you won't want to leave!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Luttrell Arms is a 3 star, 28 room hotel. Set in the medieval village of Dunster with its many interesting buildings, under the shadow of the Castle and within the Exmoor National Park. The privately owned 14th century Luttrell Arms is surrounded by beautiful countryside making it the ideal destination for that weekend break or midweek getaway. Stroll around the village, walk the moor, or just sit by a log fire in a building where hospitality has been a way of life for hundreds of years. Heritage "If you could bottle the air in the bar at the Luttrell Arms and sell it you'd clean up" so wrote a local journalist. The smell of logs burning on the fire, a hint of hops from the pints of ale, add to this the smell of something aromatic being cooked in the kitchen, and the most essential element - the smell of history, it oozes out of the walls which have stood for 800 years. There are many outstanding architectural features, the medieval hall with its hammer beam roof (room 17) and twelve light window. History seeps out of the blackened frames, which had their glass rattled loose as Cromwell’s gunners laid siege to Dunster Castle from a defended strong point at the end of the garden. Cromwell’s Commander, Col. Robert Blake walked the corridors of the hotel, it was then called the Ship Inn and was used as his headquarters throughout the siege of the castle. Also of note is some very fine plasterwork on the ceiling of the lounge downstairs, and the plaster over mantle in room 12, showing Actaeon being devoured by hounds. The Arms of Luttrell that we use today carry us back to a Gentleman of 1261, the crest takes us only back to 1621, but the supporters are directly derived from one of the Barons who coerced King John into sealing Magna Carta. A more modern visitor is Hercule Poirot. In "The Cornish Mystery" he confronts the murderer in one of the hotel’s bedrooms. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The Luttrell Arms Hotel Dunster
- Luttrell Arms Hotel Dunster
- Luttrell Arms Dunster
- The Luttrell Arms Dunster, Somerset