“ A B&B situated in the heart of the lake district in the centre of Ambleside / Location: Kelsick Road, Ambleside, Lake District, LA22 0EA „
Last April we really wanted to get away to celebrate our first wedding anniversary, and as money was tight due to the economic situation, we decided to holiday in the UK. Now I've always loved the Lake District as we used to go there often when I was young, and so we decided to look for a B&B there for a few days. After trawling the Internet for an appealing looking one, we came across Lacet House, and booked for a 3-night stay.
Lacet House is situated in the heart of the town of Ambleside, which is a typically quaint little place, popular with tourists due to its central location and plethora of good quality restaurants and bars. It is also the starting point for many good walks including to a nearby waterfall called Stock Ghyll.
Lacet House is rated as a 4 star bed and breakfast guesthouse by the enjoy England website and is run by Graham and Catherine. It has 5 guest bedrooms, 4 of which are en suite, with the 5th having a private bathroom next door to it. Prices for the rooms vary between £28 and £40 per adult per night with cheaper rates for children under the age of 18 ranging from £10 to £18 depending on age and availability. An exact price for your potential stay is available on request, and we found that they responded quickly to our correspondence via email. There is also a £2 transaction fee added to any credit card bookings, but I personally thought that this was a fair enough fee for a small business to charge for the service. We found these prices to be competitive and pretty much par for the course in the Ambleside area. They also have special offers at different times of the year such as book 3 nights and receive the 4th night free, especially in the off-peak months, so a bargain could be picked up if these times suit you.
The guesthouse is situated near the centre of the town, on the main road through, across from the park which offers mini-golf and tennis facilities. Although the road is quite busy and our room overlooked it, we didn't find that we were inconvenienced by any noise, which was a big positive.
There is a car park at the guesthouse, although this is very very small and will result in you being blocked in, or blocking in someone else. This is the only major downside with this place, and isn't really their fault as space is limited in the town. It also requires some skilful reversing and manoeuvring to get in and out. If you do find yourself blocked in, then they will endeavour to locate the offending vehicle's owner and get it moved for you quite speedily.
The rooms themselves are very spacious and best of all warm, which is just what you need to return to after a day walking out in the best that the British weather can throw at you. The radiators were at your control, as was the immersion heater for the shower. There was no bath in our room, just a toilet, sink and self-contained shower unit, which was both hot and had good pressure for an invigorating clean. There was a double bed in the middle of the room, as well as a coffee table and two easy chairs, worktops, plenty of drawer and wardrobe space, and a colour television mounted on the wall, with the usual selection of freeview channels. The rooms were cleaned on a daily basis, and we found them to be of an exceptional standard of cleanliness.
Breakfast was served in the dining room downstairs, which used to be a tearoom but is now just used for the guests. This is also of a very high standard of cleanliness, with your order being made on a card left within your room each day. You simply tick what options you want and what time you will be dining, and leave it in the hall at night and they will prepare your food for you. There is a good choice of a full English breakfast, as well as toast, pancakes and vegetarian options. There are also cereals and fruit juices left for self-service, with tea and coffee to drink.
Now so far it all seems pretty nice, and frankly pretty par for the course, but it is the extra little touches that separate this B&B from the rest. For example, in conversation with Catherine during breakfast, we said that we were there to celebrate our wedding anniversary, and then when we arrived back in our room at the end of the day there was a bottle of red wine, a couple of glasses and a card sitting on the table, which we thought was a fantastically generous touch which was unexpected. They will also provide picnics or packed lunches if you are heading out onto the fells at very competitive prices, which takes the hassle of having to do some shopping out of your holiday, which is always a bonus.
The last thing I would like to add to this review is that any guesthouse is only as good as the owners, and in this case Lacet House is in very good hands. We found both Catherine and Graham to be very friendly and helpful at all times, starting with the quick responses to email correspondence when booking the holiday, right the way through the stay. Nothing is to much trouble for them, and due to their local knowledge and experience are always willing to offer some advice or tips on where to visit and where to eat/drink when out and about.
To sum up I cannot praise this B&B highly enough. If it's a hassle free short break you are after then I would definitely recommend considering this as your base of operations.
Thanks for reading and this review is also on Ciao under my same username.