I had been working a lot of hours and had some annual leave to use, so I decided to treat myself to a break at Oakley Hall Hotel. I booked through laterooms.com and found it very reasonable in price, especially as I was staying alone. I emailed the hotel in advance and asked if I could have an early check in and late check out. The staff were very accommodating. Driving up to Oakley Hall Hotel it felt like being in an old fashioned novel. Thankfully it was a beautiful day (stayed mid June 2014). The hotel is stunning and the grounds are well maintained and beautiful. I checked in and the staff at reception were very helpful. I found my room easily. I stayed in The Coach House courtyard executive room. It was easy to find and you had the option of driving round, which I did and the gate was electronically controlled with your room key. The room was lovely. Seeing as the hotel was so old, I had hoped for more of an old country feel. The downstairs had a fridge (which took me a while to find, hidden away) and the bathroom as well as the lounge area and TV. I was very pleased that the milk in the fridge was a proper carton of milk as opposed to UHT. There were lighting switches and air conditioning controls throughout the room which took a few minutes to master but were handy, giving you the option to have various types of lighting. The sofa was not particularly comfortable, it felt very new so a bit stiff. As I said, I think I would have preferred a more traditional feel but that is personal opinion. I explored the upstairs. The same applied, it was lovely and spacious with AC and lighting controls but seemed slightly stiff, almost clinical and not initially overly inviting. The tea and coffee facilities were also hidden so it took some exploring to find but the selection offered was vast and well utilised by myself. It is a shame that the facilities, including the kettle, were all upstairs yet your water and milk were downstairs. I read through the information leaflets and decided to chance a cream tea. Thankfully they did have a spare reservation for that afternoon. The cream tea was faultless and delicious. The service was only average I'm afraid. There were 3 other tables of multiple guests around me and I did feel they were better waited on. I had to wait quite a while for my tea selection to be taken, which then initiated the order for food. However, it was a gorgeous day and I had sat outside with my book so I was happy to take in the atmosphere and read. It may have been inconvenient for someone not so relaxed with time. After the cream tea I had a walk around the grounds and it was very refreshing to be somewhere so beautiful yet only hear the sounds of nature - no cars or traffic noise. The grounds are stunning and worth a stroll around. I went back to my room and spent the rest of the day and evening there. My trip was a treat to myself so I brought a selection of DVDs and books to keep me occupied. The TV system was amazing, it accommodated my blu ray discs, laptop and hard drive! I watched some DVDs in bed throughout the afternoon. The bed could have been more comfortable. If anyone prefers soft pillows I'd suggest brining your own as the ones provided by them were quite firm and not my cup of tea. The bed itself was comfortable, not amazing. The duvet was feather so very inviting and lightweight, perfect as it was warm. It was listed as a king sized bed however it was obvious it was 2 beds connected or pushed together, so as I had the bed to myself it was a little uncomfortable as I could feel where the beds dipped. But as a couple id assume you would have a side each and probably not notice. I decided to order room service for the evening. I watched some television downstairs whilst waiting. The sofas were not well laid out for watching TV however I didn't mind re-arranging slightly. I ordered their Buffalo Burger with wedges, a sticky toffee pudding and a cheese board (I couldn't decide between cheese or dessert so tried both). The food took around 40 minutes which was fine as I ordered before I was hungry. The service was good. I had never ordered room service before and did not think to tip the waiter. Unfortunately the look on his face seemed to be quite apparent he was not impressed! I felt so guilty I called the front desk and asked for more milk (which was needed) and requested he be the one to deliver it. I gave a £10 tip which was over generous as the meal only came to £35 however it eased my guilt. The food unfortunately was average, not as good as the cream tea. The burger was very thick and obviously home made but was a bit dry throughout. The wedges and salad were lovely. The pudding was nice but very sweet. The cheese board was also ok, but the wafers provided were very thin and overpowering in taste which spoilt in my opinion the taste of the cheese. I slept ok in the bed, but probably would have had a better night sleep at home. In the morning I went down for breakfast and had a lovely seat looking at the grounds. I was the only one eating and the waiter was extremely polite and attentive however it did end up feeling a little like I was being watched. The breakfast was lovely, I asked for scrambled eggs with my cooked breakfast but they were the only part I did not enjoy. Checking out was easy.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed my overnight stay. The hotel is definitely more suited for couples and I will definitely be brining my boyfriend back. It is extremely romantic. The staff were all polite and attentive. It would be a great choice for a romantic getaway.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Built in 1795, Oakley Hall has a distinguished and fascinating past. The author Jane Austen was a friend of the Bramston family – the then owners – she was a frequent visitor to Oakley Hall and it is mentioned fondly in Austen’s letters to her sister Cassandra. A later owner, William Beach, added a second storey to the house, so creating the grand and impressive building that 21st century visitors can still enjoy. He also employed landscape gardener and architect Edward Milner to design Oakley Hall’s gardens. In 2014, a major restoration project saw Oakley Hall Hotel returned to its full glory, ensuring that visitors will continue to fall in love with Oakley Hall’s Georgian splendour and charm for many years to come. With 50 beautiful bedrooms, suites and even a delightful Garden Cottage from which to choose, guests can indulge in a luxurious stay, enjoy a relaxing drink in the 1795 Bar & Lounge and a fine dining experience in the award-winning 2 AA Rosette Glasshouse Restaurant. Outside there are acres and acres of stunning grounds to explore. From a gentle walk to an early morning run or an afternoon of clay pigeon shooting, there are plenty of things to do. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Oakley Hall Hotel Hampshire