Hotel Review: Foxhill Manor, Broadway in The Cotswolds
I can’t remember the last time I felt truly relaxed; it was probably on our honeymoon to Cape Town in 2015. Now nearly four years married and with a two-year old in tow, my husband and I were in desperate need of some R&R and to spend some quality time together. Foxhill Manor was the answer to all of our needs. After 24 hours of glorious indulgence, it’s safe to say we now say that it’s the best hotel we’ve EVER stayed in.
Foxhill Manor is an intimate Grade II listed Arts and Crafts eight-bedroom country home on the Farncombe Estate in the beautiful Cotswolds. It’s sister properties include the infamous Dormy House and The Fish. Originally a private house, Foxhill Manor boasts a home from home concept. Their ethos is ‘Our house, your rules.’
We arrived on a crisp winter’s day, awestruck by the beauty that the estate has to offer on the drive up to the house. As we approached the sweeping driveway, we were greeted by house manager Gwen, who was the perfect host. Ushering us out of the cold into the magnificent hallway, we both instantly felt a sense a calm wash over us – there’s something about the feel of the house that makes it feel like home, as opposed to a hotel.
Within moments we were relaxing in the drawing room drinking a glass of champagne and gazing out on the spectacular rolling hills of the estate as the roaring fire crackled beside us. The ever-lovely Gwen kindly took the time to tell us more about the house and its fantastic facilities; including five bedrooms and three suites, a cosy bar and lounge, and wine cellar with something for every palette, a cinema room where you can even order in, a ballroom, full use of the amazing spa at Dormy House, a host team to look after you throughout your stay (who are all exceptional), and last but not least, a state of the art kitchen.
The kitchen has to be one (there are a fair few) of the standout features for me. Each of Foxhill’s guests are invited into the kitchen to meet with Chef to curate a personalised menu. Both terrible when it comes to decision making, I did think we were probably Chef’s worst nightmare, but thankfully he was only too happy to help us select our preference. Within the kitchen is a board telling guests the freshest, seasonal and local produce that Chef believes is the best on offer for that day.
The list is concise yet offers a good variety (a mix of starters, meats, fish, desserts and cheese options) and of course you can go off piste if you wish! It has to be said that my husband was very excited at this point, agreeing with Chef that we would share three plates for both our starter and main course, they all sounded so amazing neither of us could decide on just one.
The most inviting thing about food at Foxhill is that you can eat wherever you fancy it. From breakfast in bed or lunch in the lounge, to tea on the stairs – the decision is yours! There’s no set time, and even though you give Chef and the team a rough time of when you’d like to eat, your table isn’t going to go if you’re fifteen minutes late. Following a spot of lunch (we shared a delicious salad and club sandwich) we checked into our room.
Each bedroom and suite at Foxhill Manor is individually designed and comes with all the best bits you would expect of a five-star hotel. We were lucky enough to be staying in Juniper, a huge ground floor room that was light and airy gently accentuated by pastel green hues. But it was the bathroom that really blew us away. Reached via a walk-through wardrobe, the en-suite features twin sinks separated by a long window seat, a huge walk-in shower and, in the middle, a freestanding roll top tub which I was desperate to soak in.
Juniper was so inviting and cosy, we could have spent all afternoon lounging around in there. But instead we decided to take our weary limbs to the spa. All of Foxhill’s guess can go to the spa at their leisure. The team are always on hand to run you between properties.
The House Spa at Dormy House, has been winning awards since the day it opened. And after experiencing it, it’s easy to see why. The spa is tranquil, clean, and on trend. It offers an indoor/outdoor pool, a blend of soothing therapies, a terrace hot tub, and Scandi-style thermal suite. We both braved the outside hot-tub which worked wonders on our aching muscles followed by some time in the sauna and steam rooms before relaxing on the loungers around the pool.
Before long we were due back to get ready for dinner. I could have sat in my pyjamas all evening, and being Foxhill that would have been accepted without a bat of an eyelid, but considering my husband and I rarely get time together we decided to dress up for the evening.
Wanting to make the most of it, we had a cocktail in the bar area in front if the fire to start with, It was beautifully intimate. Before long it was time for our scrumptious dinner. To start we shared carpaccio, soufflé and duck egg. Followed by Thai seabass. However, the best dishes for me were the pheasant wellington, I could eat that five times over, and the venison with slow-cooked bacon. Utterly full we decided to skip dessert and retire to our beautiful room.
After a wonderful night’s sleep, and thanks to the king-size bed, turndown service and pillow spray, we woke in the morning and ordered coffee on the in-room iPads. A few touches of a button and our coffee appeared at our bedroom door – utter bliss!
A few hours later, we had breakfast in the drawing room taking in our last moments of the wonderful surroundings. And then it was time to leave and get home to our little girl.
My husband and I adored every single moment that we shared together at Foxhill. It’s the perfect escape for anyone needing R&R. I’d be comfortable to stay there alone, but it’s also beyond perfect for couples or friends. I can honestly say I managed to forget all my worries for a full 48 hours – Foxhill is a World away, but home from home.
Rates at Foxhill Manor start from £299 per room on a B&B basis and £499 per room on
an all-inclusive basis, both based on two people sharing.
Address: Farncombe Estate, Broadway WR12 7LJ
Phone: 01386 852711