With holidays abroad surrounded by masses of uncertainty, ‘Staycations’ are on the rise! Whether it be a beach holiday to Cornwall or even a couple of nights in a city centre hotel, we are all in need of a break, which is why we were so excited to be invited to Holbeck Ghyll.
Holbeck Ghyll is a traditional Country House Hotel, situated between Ambleside & Windermere and enjoys stunning views of lake Windemere, the largest natural lake in England. This luxury, pet friendly 4-star hotel has 32 unique rooms and suites, an onsite spa and a restaurant serving award winning food, it is the perfect escape.
On arrival, we were greeted by the manager, Tom, who was very friendly and could not be more accommodating. We were able to check in early which was great as we were excited to explore the local area.
As we had our dog, Lunar with us, we stayed in one of the dog friendly lodges, called the Jemima Puddleduck Suite, situated just a short walk from the main house. The room was very spacious with a kitchenette, huge king-sized bed, en-suite bathroom, and a lounge area. The location of the lodge is perfect for those staying with pets as it opens out onto the hotel grounds, plus, it benefits from the stunning panoramic views of the lake, the best view I have ever seen from a hotel room!
Situated between Ambleside and Windemere, the drive up was relatively straightforward and took us about two and a half hours. The last couple of miles were the best part of the journey, views of the lake were amazing, and the winding road leading up to the hotel felt like driving to the top of the Earth. After checking in we jumped back in the car and headed to Ambleside, which was a short 7-minute drive away. We parked on the edge of town and made the short walk into this beautiful little town, full of small, independent shops, a lot of which were dog friendly which was a bonus!
After a day of driving and exploring we were looking forward to sampling the fine dining that Holbeck Ghyll had on offer. The hotel was awarded Best Gourmet Stay in the PETSPYJAMAS 2019 Dog-Friendly Travel Awards so it was safe to assume that we would be impressed. The restaurant is situated at the front of the hotel with captivating views across lake Windermere, the perfect dining spot. We dined in the lounge area which is a little more relaxed and dog friendly which was great as Lunar was able to stay with us during dinner and breakfast.
There was the option of the A La Carte Menu or the Tasting Menu, we decided to go with the A La Carte menu and enjoyed a 3-course meal. It was beautifully presented, full of flavour and simply delicious. Only problem was there was not enough, but then we are just greedy!
After a great night’s sleep, we headed back over to the main House for breakfast, which was equally as impressive as dinner the night before. Serving continental and hot options there is plenty of choice – I opted for the eggs benedict which was cooked to perfection. We also tried the selection of homemade pastries which were extremely tasty.
After our departure from Holbeck Ghyll, we were planning to head to Windemere however while checking out, Tom advised we visited Bowness-on-Windermere as it is more popular with tourists due to the number of shops, pubs, restaurants, and the opportunity to hire a boat. On arrival it was evident how popular the town was due to the vast amount of parking on offer. We strolled into the town and wondered round the shops for a couple of hours and then decided it was time for some lunch! After googling ‘the best fish and chip shop in Bowness-on-Windmere’ we headed over to an award-winning fish and chip shop, ‘Vinegar Jones’, located in the Royal Square. We sat in the sun and enjoyed the best fish and chips we have ever had, the fish was unbelievably fresh with a light, crisp batter and the hand cut chips were cooked perfectly.
Overall, we thoroughly enjoyed our stay, we just wish we could have stayed longer. Throughout our entire stay, Tom and his team were always on hand to cater to our every need. The area has lots to offer for people of all age groups, and the views are sublime.
As we visited the first day of opening after lockdown, there were a couple of expected teething problems however these were quickly rectified, and all staff were very pleasant and extremely helpful.
We would highly recommend Holbeck Ghyll and we look forward to visiting again soon. Thank you to PetsPyjamas.com for organising our trip, rooms can be booked via: www.petspyjamas.com