“ Address: Tavistock / Devon / England „
We stayed at this hotel last year on our wedding night and have to say it is the most amazing hotel we have ever stayed in! It is situated on the edge of Dartmoor on the outskirts of a village called Milton Abbot. Dartmoor is a beautiful national park with wide areas of open moorland - a must for the keen walker, rider, canoeist or even a keen fisherman! There are also many wild ponies on the moor - while many of these are no longer pure Dartmoor ponies, they are still around along with Shetland ponies and crosses of the two!
The hotel itself is very old - in fact the website says the following of its' history - "The first stone was laid at Endsleigh in 1810 by Georgina, Duchess of Bedford and her three eldest sons. The Bedford family owned a third of Devon and decided this was the prettiest place in the county to build their house. Endsleigh was designed by Sir Jeffry Wyattville as a cottage orné. The family used it as a shooting and fishing lodge; they opened it just once a year when they arrived with servants, children, silver and animals in tow. Georgina was a passionate gardener and lover of the outdoors and Humphry Repton created an outstanding garden for her. Both the house and the garden are Grade I listed."
The hotel is currently owned by internationally renowned Alex Polizzi and the decor of the hotel has been designed by herself and her mother, Olga Polizzi. There are 16 rooms, all of which have been styled sympathetically to the Regency period in which the house dates - in fact original features are evident in many of the rooms. The food served within the hotel is all sourced locally and is of wonderful quality! Rooms cost between £200 per night for a small double, £360 for a suite and if you wish to stay in the Gatekeeper's Lodge that will cost £400 a night. If you stay at the weekend you need to stay for two nights - although this was lovely for us as it gave us the Sunday to really relax and unwind after our wedding! The prices above include VAT and are for B&B. If you are a single occupant or stay for a longer stay (although the website does not quantify what this is!) then you are entitled to a 10% discount. The hotel is doggy friendly (except in the restaurant) and a child bed or cot can be put in the rooms.
When we booked we went to have a look around the hotel and the concierge kindly showed us round some of the rooms so we could request which room we wanted! Each room is very different but all styled in a very elegant and luxurious way, befitting for the amount you pay to stay there! Some months later it was our wedding day and we duly arrived at the hotel at 11.30. We were told that due to the lateness of our arrival there would only be one night porter there to greet us, when we arrived however we found that most of the staff had waited up for us and that the entrance hall was filled with nearly 100 candles and a roaring fire - a very romantic greeting on a very romantic day! We were shown up to our room and found a complementary bottle of champagne and homemade truffles waiting for us which was a really lovely touch! The room we stayed in, number 8, even had Grade 2 listed wall paper on the wall! The next morning we were treated to breakfast in bed (although the hotel serves breakfast with room service, usually it's a continental breakfast - we were treated to full English breakfast though which was lovely!) and the food was lovely - as above, all locally sourced and cooked very well! Both my family and my husband's family joined us for afternoon tea at the hotel to catch up and reflect on the day and this was also to be highly recommended - the carrot cake in particular is heaven! By that evening, having done a lot of eating for two days we neither of us were particularly hungry so we didn't go down for dinner to be able to comment on it - but we were again treated by the hotel and a cheese platter arrived for us!
We checked out on the Monday morning thoroughly refreshed and relaxed, ready for the start of our honeymoon in St Lucia!
There is a wonderful atmosphere in this hotel which I have found in few others, the library is wonderfully well stocked and there are many corners you can tuck yourself off in to to while away a wet afternoon with a good book! The bar is rarely staffed - in fact there is a book behind the bar and you write in what you've poured for yourself, a wonderfully trusting idea and one I imagine is rarely abused! The character pours out from every angle, the staff are very attentive without being overbearing - in fact the only thing missing is the fact that Alex's pet pig is no longer with her, having tea in the lounge and seeing a pot bellied pig go charging through was quite delightful!
16 luxurious rooms are set in the regency period and look out onto beautiful gardens and the Tamar river.