Hotel Review: Oak House No.1, Tetbury in the Cotswolds
For all its iconic British beauty, the Cotswolds isn’t really the type of place to visit if you want to be surprised. You go to admire its unique upmarket-yet-pastoral appeal – honey-coloured cottages, rolling green fields and historic villages – and to amble along paths in mud-splattered wellies. But some places in the Cotswolds aren’t what you expect, and nowhere illustrates this better than Oak House No.1, a flamboyant, luxurious boutique B&B in the heart of Tetbury. From the outside this handsome house looks like your archetypal Cotswolds home, a picture of understated Georgian elegance – but step inside and you’ll enter another world.
Style & Character
Put simply, Oak House No.1 is a work of art. On your left as you enter the house is the living room, a midnight-blue lounge with matching velvet sofas, glowing gold lamps, and authentic panelled walls where vibrant portraits hang. Across the hall is the dining room, where an ornate chandelier glitters between vivid red and green walls, and Andy Warhol’s The Queen gazes at you serenely while you eat.
The astounding art collection in these rooms sets the tone for the rest of the house; everywhere you look there’s a beautiful vase to marvel at, or a unique painting that catches your eye. In spite of this, none of the vibrant decor detracts from its country-house charm, and the result is the perfect balance between modern, innovative creativity and old-fashioned styling.
Upstairs, the rooms are no less lavish. There are three guest suites, all of which have their own style and character. The Garden View Suite at the back is light and airy, with subtle cream furnishings, elegant antiques, a traditional sleigh bed and a modern ensuite. The stately Prince’s Suite has a four-poster bed, chaise longue, ensuite bathroom (with Roberto Cavalli dressing gowns) and red walls adorned with contemporary and period art collected from around the world.
The grandest room is the Cavalier Suite, which is actually a collection of three rooms: there’s the bedroom, with a four-poster bed, ornate armchairs, a marble table with fresh roses and champagne glasses, and plenty of sculptures and Murano glass and art; there’s a lovely library with cosy chairs, a TV, and bookshelves stacked with vintage books and comics; and there’s an enormous bathroom with a bathtub at one end (with a built-in TV) and a walk-in shower at the other. All bathrooms are stocked with Molton Brown products.
Food, Drink & Service
Aside from its five-star artistic ambiance, one of the main draws of Oak House No.1 are its hosts. Gary and Nicola’s love for hosting is evident from the moment you’re greeted at the front door with big smiles and firm handshakes; not for nothing do almost all TripAdvisor ratings rave about their unending hospitality. Gary and Nicola encourage you to make yourself at home in the deep-blue lounge, enjoy a homemade afternoon tea in their peaceful garden, or simply wander through the house admiring their collection of treasures.
Breakfast is included, cooked by Nicola in the stunning farmhouse-style kitchen. There are bowls of fresh fruit, a selection of different jams, juices and pastries, and plenty of coffee. Hot breakfasts are cooked to order and include salmon, scrambled eggs or full English. There are plenty of good dining options nearby, including the vegan-friendly Royal Oak and The Conservatory at Calcot. Next door to the B&B is the Vinotopia wine shop, where the impeccable service might lure you to buy a few too many bottles…. Still, staying at Oak House No.1 is about embracing indulgence, to don’t feel too bad.
Address: Oak House No.1, The Chipping, Tetbury GL8 8EU
Tel: +44 (0)1666-505741