As I sit here writing up my blog on my night in The Cotswolds I am listening to The Holiday soundtrack. I know it’s not yet Christmas but I feel like I was on the set of The Holiday (the English, Cameron Diaz part of the movie) during my romantic trip in The Cotswolds. You know that part where Cameron Diaz meets Jude Law in a cute little country pub at Christmas time and when she scoots down the country lane in her Mini, well I felt like I found the exact same vibe in Gloucester. Liam and I stayed at The Painswick hotel for our wedding anniversary. It is our 3rd wedding anniversary and it was so lovely to do something special for occasion. Last year we spent our time celebrating at Soho Farmhouse but the year before we didn’t do anything (read about our trip here). I am definitely in the mood to keep up the tradition of staying somewhere special for our anniversary, where do you think we should go next year?
As we drove up the steepest hill (not on a mountain) I have ever driven up we approached the impressive and rather grand Painswick hotel. The grounds surrounding the hotel look out over the beautiful distant scenery. You can sit out on the decking, or for a more intimate and luxurious spot you can hide out on the balcony cradled in flowers. I love how the hotel only has a few rooms, meaning that there is always a hushed and relaxed vibe. Little cosy nooks by the fire really drew me in along with the free pool table where, if I didn’t lose, I would have played all night long. Our room was cosy but spacious enough and looked out over the gorgeous view. I made full use of the stunning round window by forcing Liam to do a mini photoshoot of me with the light streaming through. I have always dreamed of having a window with a windowsill big enough that I could perch in and gaze out of like in a romantic movie. The bathroom was filled with Ren products which I adore and fluffy dressing gowns. (Book here).
When we arrived in our room we were welcomed to freshly baked madeleines and cookies which were the perfect sweet treat after a long drive before we wondered around the town. After a little photo shoot/mooch around we sat down in the living room area for high tea. I had a lovely fresh mint tea and a vegetarian selection, whilst Liam had a meat high tea which consisted of an incredible looking scotch egg and pork pie and some toasted meaty sandwiches. The highlight for me was the chocolate brownie which I can safely say was my favourite brownie I have ever eaten in my life!! The only negative thing I have to say about my whole experience is that the vegetarian high tea lacked a little. Sadly I was only presented with two small finger sandwiches and the rest was cakes. Although I generally have more of a sweet tooth, I would really have liked some more vegetarian savoury options to match with Liam’s more hefty high tea. It would have been nice to have a mozzarella toastie or a cheese and pickle sandwich for example.
We ate dinner out at a local pub which was so tiny and really cosy. After dinner we headed back to the hotel for a nightcap and a game of pool. The games room is crammed with all of the board games you could wish for which you can then take back to your room to play, which we dutifully did and Liam surprised me with a bottle of Champagne. I love how this hotel has chilled champagne glasses in their mini bar, I have been to so many hotels where there are only tumblers in the room. The cocktail that we had in the bar at the hotel was called Kemps Lane and was so good that only 4 hours after we left the venue Liam had popped to Waitrose for all of the ingredients to make it again.
Breakfast was incredible!! Literally fabulous!!
I loved how there was so much on offer at breakfast. Most hotels just have the standard continental brekkie of cereals and croissants and always nasty slimy eggs but the breakfast at The Painswick was on another level. The two biggest highlights from breakfast for me which I would highly recommend were the chefs fresh tonics (I had the Apple and Ginger) and the homemade hash browns…I could have eaten so many of these. I tried a completely un-me and random breakfast dish of what was essentially eggy-bread dusted in cinnamon which seemed so peculiar but was strangely more-ish, it was insanely filling. I am sure you can visit for breakfast even as a non-guest so if you are in the area I suggest you head on over asap.
Have you been to the Cotswolds before? I definitely want to stay here again one day and explore the area in greater depth, everything was so idyllic.