For more than twenty years I travelled on business staying in some wonderful hotels in countries where standards of service rank far above those that are normal in the UK. The downside of staying in the better kind of Japanese hotel, as I often did, is that almost anywhere else you go you will find that standards of cleanliness, staff efficiency and service leave something to be desired. I honestly thought that I would never find a hotel in the UK that would be able to compete but having stayed at Buckland Manor I now realise that I was wrong.
When my wife and I stay in a hotel we are looking for peace and quiet in lovely surroundings, preferably in an historic building. We accept that such places cannot be expected to have the modern plumbing that provides endless and instant hot water and that the fabric of the building will inevitably be a little run down but Buckland has a combination of history and efficiency that we never expected to find. With origins in the thirteenth century, the wonderful building is surrounded by pristine gardens and set in a perfect Cotswold valley. Our very spacious room, the Green Room, seemed to have been beautifully refurbished yesterday, the vast bathroom was unmarked and hot water gushed at the turn of a tap. Without exception staff were friendly and helpful with none of the snootiness that sometimes infects those in expensive hotels.
Even expensive hotels all to often have noises in the night, whether the footsteps of other guests, a kitchen extractor fan or the voices of the staff. Buckland had none of these and only the dawn chorus slightly disturbed our sleep. I would be surprised if there is a better hotel or even one quite as good anywhere in the UK.
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