Known for and named after its Roman-built baths, the city of Bath in Somerset attracts a wide range of visitors year-round for its fantastic dining options, gorgeous honey-hued Georgian architecture, endless shopping opportunities and fascinating historical sights.
The compact city was named as a World Heritage site in 1987 and is centred around the ancient baths and Thermae Spa, towering abbey, rugby ground, iconic architectural gems of Royal Crescent and the Circus as well as notable sights including Pulteney Bridge, which crosses the River Avon. The Pump Room, Sally Lunn’s, Theatre Royal and Jane Austen Centre are some other top attractions while, when not immersing themselves in the restaurant scene and shops, visitors can make use of the pretty gardens and parks that surround.
This wasn’t my first visit to Bath, as this city had me absolutely hooked from my very first trip, so I have made it my mission to visit at least once a year to cram in some of those previously mentioned highlights. For this trip I was looking forward to staying in the boutique Roseate Villa Bath, which sits in a peaceful location next to the 7-acre Henrietta Park on the north east corner of the city.
A short walk from the train station, the building is comprised of two converted Victorian houses and is far enough away from the crowds to provide a quiet place to reside, while being close enough to the city centre to wander in and out. Boasting 21 individual rooms and the airy Henrietta Bar, the hotel provides delightful breakfasts, afternoon teas and drinks in the public space and elegant rooms for your stay.
After being met with a very warm welcome at reception (this terrific hospitality continued throughout) and booking in my breakfast time slot (a Covid measure), I was shown to my ground floor room and was enchanted with the striking décor.
White walls were met with shining black furniture and grey touches, while flashes of tangerine as well as grey tartan soft furnishings made for an attractive colour palette with elements throughout the room bringing the look together. Fresh cut orange flowers greeted me, and I was very pleased with the spacious room, which comfortably fitted a dressing table/desk, a chest of drawers and table and comfortable armchairs in the bay window area.
The large windows boasted lovely white shutters and the large, grey bed was a delight to recline on with its Hypnos mattress and soft bedding. Cosy robes and fresh lavender were placed on the bed, the bathroom boasted toiletries by Penhaligon’s and there was a tea and coffee making area with a small fridge holding fresh milk and water. A chandelier, ornate framed mirror and grey floral wallpaper on the wall behind the bed added to the boutique element, while a large TV, radio alarm and speaker provided some much-needed tech. This comfortable, light filled space provided plenty of restful down time.
Food and drink
Henrietta Bar doesn’t serve lunch or dinner, but guests can indulge in drinks throughout the day, hearty breakfasts and delightful afternoon teas and I gladly did all.
It seems that being able to focus on just these two services means that a level of quality of both can be achieved. Breakfast was plentiful and pretty sublime. My eggs Florentine was wholesome and tasty, and the vegetarian breakfast came with a range of items, though perhaps a few too many for my liking, especially the cucumber. Mini croissants and pain au chocolate were also enjoyed and everything that came out from kitchen, from the blueberry pancakes to the Full English looked scrumptious.
Delving into the afternoon tea was a fabulous way to spend a few hours with my chosen tea being topped up consistently so that I could tuck into the three-tiered treat stand with gusto.
The tea can be enjoyed with a range of teas, champagne, prosecco or a cocktail and I opted for the peppermint green tea. A glorious mix of traditional favourites were present including plain and raisin scones with homemade jams and clotted cream; fingers sandwiches consisting of smoked salmon and horseradish, smoked Applewood cheddar and homemade chutney, cucumber with citrus cream cheese, ham with honey mustard mayonnaise and free range egg mayonnaise.
Looking out on the grounds with the October sun filtering through the windows and tucking into these delightful bites was just how I wanted to be spending my afternoon, and once the savoury items were suitably digested, it was onto the sweet treats for me.
It was hard to pick a favourite as all items were perfectly complementary and they were all different. Toffee popcorn profiterole with salted caramel balanced out the dark chocolate and passion fruit delice with a cocoa jelly glaze, while the lemon tart with seasonal berry paired perfectly aside the chef’s macaron. A chunk of pistachio, lemon and polenta cake with Greek yogurt glaze completed the set and by the time I had soldiered on through the generous portions I was ready for a lie down!
As previously mentioned, this wasn’t my first to Bath, so when it comes to selecting a suitable restaurant for dinner, I can highly recommend the Michelin-starred Olive Tree Restaurant, elegant Dower House Restaurant, fine dining cuisine at The Mint Room, the delightful French restaurant The Bath Priory, Dan Moon at The Gainsborough Restaurant and the ever-popular tapas eatery La Perla.
In a nutshell
When heading to Bath you will want to ensure that you reside in a refined setting that embodies elements of its hosting city. Coupled with welcoming personnel, a peaceful setting and food to savour, Roseate Villa Bath achieves exactly this.
Bath can be reached in an hour and a half from London and rooms at Roseate Villa Bath start at £126.
Address: The Roseate Villa, Henrietta Road, Bath, BA2 6LX
Tel: 01225 466329
All imagery used in this article credit: The Roseate Villa Bath