Spring has sprung and where better to bask in arguably the most beautiful season of all, than deep in the English countryside.
Hampshire lies just south of London and its international airports, offering a perfect weekend escape from the hustle and bustle of city life.
When embracing all things quintessentially British, it’s advisable to get a true taste of this historical country by staying in a luxurious stately home.
Tylney Hall, set in 66 acres of landscaped gardens, is nestled among some of the best walking areas of Hampshire. The imposing Grade Two listed country house dates back to 1700, with a rich and varied family history; from a hospital during the First World War to a school and now a four-star hotel and notable restaurant, part of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World portfolio.
As well as offering an interior worthy of a period drama with roaring log fires and four-poster beds, Tylney Hall comes alive in the warmer months. Frolic in the outdoor swimming pool, sheltered within its own walled garden or sip a cocktail at sunset on the terrace that perches on the edge of the extensive grounds.
Driving up to the house is in itself, a treat and offers perspective on the sheer size of the hotel’s locale. For the active among you, there’s an adjacent 18-hole golf course and other notoriously English pursuits such as archery and clay pigeon shooting within the grounds. The gardens, such is their manicured opulence are open to the public with the Italian Garden, a personal favourite for its abundance of fragrant roses that bloom in the Springtime. Original statues stand proudly next to impressive fountains and the view from the bridge over Boathouse Lake offers the postcard-perfect vista of Tylney Hall in all its glory.
The interior of Tylney Hall is dark, moody and exudes sophisticated elegance. A chequered floor greets guests which is framed by a deep, mahogany staircase that snakes its way up the two floors of the hotel. Rooms are either houses in the main mansion house – some of which are currently under refurbishment, or in the Orangery and Walled Garden.
The Duchess Suite, one of the hotel’s finest, is an enormous duplex room with a drawing room the size of most people’s apartments. A grand four-posted bed takes price of place in the bedroom, ornate fireplaces offer a sense of whimsical romance and original features decorate the ceilings and walls. The rooms in The Orangery, although smaller in size, offer just as much character; floor-to-ceiling windows overlook the carp lake, allowing guests to step straight from their rooms into the gardens.
Residents and visitors to Hampshire flock to the hotel’s Oak Room restaurant, where the chef’s individual style of modern British dining fits in perfectly with the it’s baroque interior. With an experienced pastry chef, the Vanilla Panacotta is particularly popular among visiting gastronomes and other menu highlights include the substantial Chateaubriand, Duck Parfait with Red Onion and Toasted Brioche and Pan-Fried Skate served with Mango, Avocado and Chili.
Furthermore, Tylney Hall offers a perfect base to explore the surrounding countryside with Jane Austen’s House and the beautiful Winchester Cathedral only a short drive away. So, if you’re looking for a taste of true English countryside, Tylney Hall is a formidable choice of hotel.