We spent a blissful week at Summer Lodge earlier this month. We have stayed in many wonderful hotels around the world and this is one of the best.
Summer Lodge is on the edge of the picturesque village of Evershot, surrounded by beautiful gardens amid attractive rolling countryside. The hotel is elegantly furnished and decorated and the rooms very comfortable. We stayed in a ground floor suite in the coach house, a few yards walk from the main building - as well as a spacious bedroom and bathroom, we had a small sitting room in a conservatory and a small private walled garden, complete with sun loungers. My only criticisms of the suite are that the bathroom had no separate shower cubicle and, despite the heatwave, and in the name of saving the environment, they switched off the air conditioning every time they serviced the room, leaving it hot and stuffy on our return.
The hotel has an excellent indoor swimming pool which I used before breakfast each day - with one exception, I had it to myself.
The restaurant is superb. Dinner (£60 a head if booked on a Dinner Bed and Breakfast basis) is 3 courses, with 5 or 6 options for each course. The chef uses mainly local ingredients (his signature dish of Dorset Spring lamb with an amazing shepherd's pie is particularly good). We ate most things on the menu during our stay and enjoyed them all. Like most Michelin starred restaurants, dinner included a choice of unusual breads, canapes, an amuse bouche and a pre-dessert, all delicious. Presentation is particularly strong. The extensive wine list includes plenty undre £50 a bottle.
Breakfast is equally special with freshly squeezed orange juice, Dorset cereals, fresh fruit, yogurt, superb croissants and danish pastries, smoked salmon and hot food cooked to order (I loved their Eggs Benedict) and, when the weather was warm, we were able to have it on the terrace.
At £25, their 3 course Sunday lunch (with canapes and an amuse bouche) is exceptional value, and many locals were there to take advantage of it.
If you are staying more than a couple of nights, an alternative is to eat at their nearby pub, The Acorn Inn, which was very good, if rather airless on a hot evening, and much cheaper. It takes only a minute or two to walk there.
Despite all the other superlatives,the best thing about Summer Lodge is the people, whether in the restaurant, at the front desk or the excellent twice daily servicing of the room. Without exception, they were charming and delivered a very high standard of personal service - everyone seemed to know our names.
We can't recommend Summer Lodge too highly. Not cheap,but value for money if you want somewhere special - the perfect place for a luxurious staycation.
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- Also Known As:
- Summer Hotel Evershot
- Summer Hotel Dorchester
- Summer Lodge Evershot, Dorset