If you’re looking for a quick country get-a-way, The Manor Country House Hotel in Oxfordshire is the one. I visited this gorgeous little find last week (mid December) and it was the perfect location for a Christmas treat. With the hotel being only a short drive away from Bicester Village, it was ideal for me to get in the Christmas spirit as well as finish off all of my Christmas Shopping! So let me start from the beginning..
Being only a short 45 minute drive away, we arrived at The Manor in late afternoon and I was immediately stunned by the hotel’s exterior. A castle-esq setting only fit for a princess (moi), the hotel had a long gravel drive which surrounded a huge Christmas tree, accompanied by little lamb shaped hedges – so cute and I couldn’t have felt more country! The hotel has only a small number of rooms, and the entrance was a huge door that dates back to the 15/16th century, opening into the most perfect country setting: a warm fire blazing next to logs piled high, and a sparkling Christmas tree in the corner. It was hard to picture how cute and cozy the rooms are!
After a super quick check in we were shown to our room, and I have to say I was blown away. I was so kindly given a suite which featured a gorgeous luxury marble bathroom, with inter-connecting rooms in case we wanted a little sit down on our way to the huge king size bed.. Despite being a little nervous about the hotel being so old and maybe haunted (it is apparently), the room had a warm feel to it, making us feel right at home. Our suite featured a giant window which let so much sun and light in, it made for the most beautiful photo settings! My boyfriend took very well to being my photographer, so he made the cut to come again..
After a quick nap in the cosy King bed we freshened up and headed down to dinner, and to no surprise the food was absolutely unreal. We chose to eat in the restaurant but the hotel also offers bar food of a similar nature, yet slightly bigger in portions. The restaurant, we were told, hosts small dishes yet focuses on flavour, and they weren’t wrong – the hotel chefs have a 2AA Rosette status so we knew we were in for a treat. We had a three course meal and every dish was absolutely incredible! I had pork belly to start, halibut & scallop rissotto for main and sticky toffee pudding for dessert. Sam had a soup to start, beef loin for main and apple and rhubarb crumple with ice cream for dessert. Every dish was full of flavour, I would even come back just to eat it was that good! If you’re looking for somewhere that’s of a higher quality or you want to impress, I definitely recommend The Manor. They also host afternoon tea and private dinner parties, so if you’re wanting somewhere luxe and elegant with top quality food, this is your place.
After a delicious dinner, we went and sat next to the fire and had a hot chocolate which was the end to a perfect night before heading to bed so we could wake up early for breakfast, because everyone knows breakfast is the best meal of the day! This was served in another room which had even more windows that let in the natural sunlight as we ate breakfast, with views of the grounds that were still covered in snow. Just goes to show how cold it is in England!
The breakfast, again was amazing. We helped ourselves to fruit, croissants, yoghurts and juices, and then got to choose our cooked breakfast. I had scrambled eggs on toast, and Sam had the full English breakfast. You can really tell the difference between a bog-standard and a top notch English breakfast, and The Manor definitely did it justice!
All in all, we reeeally wanted to stay for longer than just the night. It was such a beautiful little hotel, and set in the stunning countryside it was the perfect location for a Christmas night away. I’ll definitely be heading back and am thinking to take my mum for afternoon tea! Thank you so much to The Manor for having us and I cant wait to visit again.
Love, L x