Looking for somewhere to spend a lazy weekend luxuriating in beautiful design, fabulous art work, acres of grounds and enjoying delicious food and wine? Look no further, 10 Castle Street in Cranborne is just what you’ve been searching for.
There’s a new breed of hotels that serve Londoners, out of London. From Soho Farmhouse to The Pig on the Beach, Londoners can enjoy a sliver of what they love in the city, alongside fresh air, endless miles of walks and deep restorative sleeps. One of the lesser known gems just waiting to be discovered is 10 Castle Street. A 2 hour drive from London, it’s to be found in the beautiful village of Cranborne in Dorset and is located in an imposing Queen Anne mansion with manicured gardens to roam in and enjoy.
Pulling into the driveway of the old family home of the Countess of Litchfield, you’ll spot many a Range Rover and a scattering of Aston Martins. Yet fear not, this is not a pretentious place. You’ll be just as welcome in your wellingtons with a dog (yes, amazingly they are dog friendly too) as you are dressed to the nines arriving for dinner in the sumptuous dining room.
This is the perfect spot as winter nights draw in – you’ll arrive at the door to find a roaring fire and friendly staff. Cosy up in one of the nine bedrooms, all of which have been refurbished to the highest standard. Fancy a long soak in a gigantic bathtub surrounded by marble? Your wish is their command. Want to take long afternoon naps in fresh white linen with the late afternoon sun streaming in? Be their guest. If you’re a fan of hotel lounges, you’ll love the numerous spots to relax in – their selection of beautifully upholstered arm chairs in amazing fabrics makes you want to grab a book and sit all day long. 10 Castle Street aims to be much more than a hotel and locals and friends can become members here – with hotel guests becoming ‘passing members’ for the duration of their stay.
Make sure you reserve a table for dinner, and make a real evening of it with drinks beforehand (and after if you like). Gin lovers can try a whole host of local and international gins available and the bar has a real buzz to it on a busy evening. Service is swift and friendly and again, if you want to bring your dog along, the only place they’re not accepted is in the restaurant.
The chefs here focus heavily on sourcing as much as possible from the local Dorset countryside. Menus change at least seasonally with special events (such as Bonfire Night) gaining menus of their own. The pumpkin soup served with bacon and kale, and the wild venison meatballs with mushroom stroganoff were both excellent starters. The current owners of 10 Castle Street are passionate about wine and the house wines are an absolute must try. There’s a great selection of wines by the glass so if you can’t decide then definitely try a few of the favourites. For main courses, you can’t go wrong with the rump steak – and a side of the Brie and Truffle (yes really) mash potato.
You’ll be back down for breakfast all too soon (honestly, you could stay in those beds for days) and the hot options (Full English or smoked salmon with scrambled eggs) are just what you need to fuel you for a walk around the surrounding area. The Cranborne Estate offers walks of all lengths and terrains, and the countryside is really beautiful – a little more Cotswolds-like than other parts of Dorset with endless fields and rolling hills. This is truly the land of farm shops and great pubs to stop off for a pint.
10 Castle Street is truly doing something special. Staff are happy and helpful, service is excellent, the rooms are beautiful, there’s amazing art work on the walls, the food and wine are both wonderful – it’s a place that’s hard to leave…….now, about that membership!?
For booking and more information, visit the 10 Castle Street website here.
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Images © 10 Castle Street