Category Archives: Country Hotels

Discovering Kerala Hotels with the Bespoke India Portfolio

Described by Lonely Planet as a ‘tropical symphony’, our Kerala hotels are in a coastal state in India’s deep south, characterised by its layered landscape and nearly 600km of coastline and beaches

With spice and tea covered hills the area is everything that the storybooks would have you believe – a soul quenching, fantastical part of the world, built for myths, legends and fulfilling travel and discovery.  Kerala in particular is known as home to wild elephants, exotic birds and even tigers, while it’s also rich with tradition and temple festivals overflowing with the kind of characterful energy that gives even its smallest villages a palpable buzz.

Kerala Hotels

Key amongst Kerala’s recommended experiences are those showcasing its wildlife and history at their best – the Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary, Mattancherry Palace, Pardesi Synagogue, and the Thattekkad Bird Sanctuary.  However, the Kerala hotels that you stay in also have the capacity to shape your experience and really give an insight into the hospitality and culture of the region.

The enticingly named Elephant Court, for example, is an ecological hotel in a 100-acre nature reserve and organic farm.  Rather than rooms, guests stay in one of 20 bungalows nestled into the Palni Hills, surrounded by one of the most important biodiversity spots on the planet.  As the name suggests, the hotel is close to the town of Kodaikanal, which is famed as an old elephant migration route and now extends into the wildlife sanctuaries of Kerala.  Meanwhile, the bungalows themselves are all unique, from the three-bedroom Peninsular Room, to the Tree House which is held aloft by a 100-year old Sizigium Cumini tree. So you can see how this particular hotel is an all encompassing experience in its own right.

Kerala hotels

Alternatively, Poovar Island Resort is an altogether more luxurious affair – a small village made of 78 land-based and floating villas surrounded by 25 acres of verdant green coconut gardens. The hotel has its own Ayurvedic Village – otherwise known as a wellness centre – that’s a spectacular 6,000 square feet of medicinal herbs and wellbeing based on ancient practices.  Meanwhile, there’s also a swimming pool, sunken bar, private beach, and all the trimmings that go with a decadent exotic holiday – one of the range of different Kerala hotels.

Showcasing the romantic diversity of this part of India, other hotels in the Bespoke India Portfolio, range from The Highland Heritage homestay hotel in Goa – featuring its own antique hand-crafted furniture – to the contemporary 14-bedroom boutique hotel The Richmond in the French Quarter of Pondicherry.  All are an indication of how you can experience multiple facets of Kerala and its history through its different locations and hotels.

Kerala hotels

A particular favourite of ours, however, has to be Destiny Farm Stay.  Set in the pristine, untouched valley of Avalanchi, this is a real wildlife adventure resort.  Here the views are of the hills and lake, while the hotel and farm operate on eco-friendly, self-sufficient methods, while producing their own fruit, coffee, vegetables, herbs, and flowers.  It’s a nature lover’s paradise, but without losing that special sense of luxury, thanks to spa treatments, beautiful design, and incredible panoramas.  No wonder that it’s a popular hotel for weddings as well as those simply wanting to escape – India, and Kerala in particular, is an impossible place not to fall in love with.

Whichever one of our Kerala hotels takes your fancy follow the link to check availability, best rates and to book >>>>

Bespoke Hotels – a Bank Holiday Guide

The May bank holiday is fast approaching this weekend and the summer very much on its way, we’re all keeping our fingers and toes crossed for warm weather and blue skies.  Whether the sun emerges or not however, a three-day weekend gives us all the chance to really relax and unwind with our partners, families and friends.  So here’s what Bespoke Hotels recommend…

Hotels For Couples

Bespoke Hotels  Cotswold House Hotel
Cotswold House Hotel

Three days to ourselves is a perfect opportunity to have spend some quality time with our partners, because at other times it can be all too easy to rush around simply doing the things that we have to. If you haven’t already been, Castlemartyr Resort in Ireland is a wonderful location for making anyone feel loved thanks to the beautiful location and its rather spectacular spa.

With Bespoke Hotels, you have a choice between self-catering mews houses and contemporary lodges, or five-star hotel facilities with all the trimmings.  The grounds really are quite awe-inspiring, the kind of place that makes you feel wonderfully oppunlent, while the ESPA Spa is strikingly contemporary in design, and has been created and managed by the world-leading spa product brand itself, which bodes extremely well for the experience.

Alternatively, Cornwall’s Lugger Hotel offers the best of boutique British experiences by the sea, with spectacular seafood proving a key highlight for foodies.  While for those heading to Scotland, The Newton Hotel is an imposing Highland destination once regularly frequented by Charlie Chaplin – and between the grounds and the architecture you couldn’t imagine anywhere more romantic.

Hotels For Families

Bespoke Hotels Noel Arms Restaurant

Bank holidays are made for family breaks it seems, as there’s just never enough time to do everything on a normal Saturday and Sunday.  So these long breaks are precious to all of us who want to spend time with parents, children, uncles, aunts and anyone else we can welcome along.

The question, therefore, is finding somewhere that caters to everyone’s needs so that all involved can relax and unwind. If you fancy a trip overseas, Amsterdam is easy to get to and Bespoke Hotels offers you the four-star Memphis Hotel in the prettiest part of the city is within walking distance of the museums, the Vondelpark and the main shopping district.

The hotel has triple rooms ideal for young families, and the city is known for its cycling culture which adds another joyful dimension to the experience.  What we love about the city and hotel is that it’s a highly cultured experience, yet at the same time one that the whole family can enjoy.

A little closer to home there are of course some beautiful places in the UK that welcome families, with The Cotswolds in particular providing a scenic haven.  Stonehouse Court is 17th century manor house hotel surrounded by six acres of grounds for the kids to explore.  While mum and dad can sit in the garden with a glass of Pimms, while the children enjoy the great outdoors in blissful British summer style.  Alternatively, the Noel Arms Hotels is nearby and also welcomes families with a traditional twist.

Hotels for Groups

Bespoke Hotels Lamprey Court Hotel
Lamprey Court Hotel

Travelling with friends isn’t always top of the agenda over the bank holiday, but with wedding season on the horizon hen parties are in full swing and a trip replete with L-plates isn’t for everyone. For some it may be a simple chance to enjoy quality time, and that goes for those of us who have no particular reason for holidaying with friends other than the simple fact of enjoying one another’s company.

Restored Georgian Mansion Lamphey Court in Pembrokeshire is a beautiful experience to share with a group this bank holiday. The welsh coastline nearby was named the second best in the world by National Geographic, while the hotel itself is straight out of a storybook. There’s also a golf course for those who play or want to give it a go, a spa, and of course the area is fantastic for exploring on foot.

Alternatively, Bespoke Hotels the Lifehouse Spa and Hotel in Essex is ideal for groups of girls wanting a health break, thanks to the staff’s vast knowledge surrounding wellbeing, beautiful gardens to mill about in, excellent food, and contemporary design.  The spa experience is integral to your stay and packages are tailored by the resident naturopath, so if you have a particular wellbeing concern you want to address, this is the place to do it.  In short, it’s just a lovely place to unwind and feel extremely good about yourself with one, two or more of the people you most like to spend time with!

Whatever you decide, we wish you a wonderful bank holiday!

For late offers for your favourite Bespoke Hotel follow this link >>>

Introducing Bespoke India Hotels

India has always had a sense of mystique and wonder about it – a place born to tell legendary tales and imbued with spice and rich colours.  In ever way India is the sort of place that stories are written about and adventures are made from.

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Over the past 20 years however, India seems to have garnered a reputation for being the holiday destination of backpackers at one end of the spectrum, and highly priced once-in-a-lifetime adventures at the other end.  So what about those of us in between, who want to have a beautiful vacation in a magic destination with exceptional service, but without having to re-mortgage the house to do it?  Those of us who simply want to go on holiday somewhere special?

This year the new international business arm of Bespoke Hotels, Bespoke International, launched with its inaugural partnership alongside India’s Peppermint Hotels and the “Play Stay Love”.  The Bespoke India Hotels collection is designed to fulfill a growth in interest from international markets looking for a high quality and competent British operator, and the Bespoke India branch incorporates more than 50 venues across the country including Northern India, Western India and Southern India.

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Northern India starts with Jaipur, the Pink City, known for its mysterious Palace of the Winds, before heading to the majestic Taj Mahal and all offset by the breathtaking Himalayas. Western India boasts some of the region’s most spectacular wildlife and is home to the otherworldly Jaipur, otherwise known as Blue City for its vivid blue painted houses.  Southern India on the other hand epitomizes tranquility and relaxation with its river cruises, spices and coffee plantations.

The Bespoke India Hotels Collection infuses the travel experience with its characteristic sense of British charm and the high standards you would expect from a Bespoke hotel, while still getting to the heart and character of the destination you’re visiting.  Swap grubby London transport for temples, sandy beaches and a feast of fresh prawns in Kerala, or explore the spectacular wildlife and rich environments of Northern Rajastan.

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In Asia you will find some of the most awe-inspiring mountains with the Aamod Nainital magnificently located in the Himalayan hills.   The area is also blessed with some of the most beautiful beaches you can find, and one cannot express highly enough the wonders of visiting Kanan Beach Resort between Bekal and Nileshwar beaches.  Situated on the Arabian coast the trekking and natural features are awe-inspiring while the local festivals are a joy to behold.

What Bespoke India Hotels brings that other collections can’t is that assurance of high standards without diluting the cultural experience that a holiday like this is all about.  In short, it is everything Bespoke stands for.

Half Term UK Breaks – Family Packages

Half term is easy to overlook, compared to the major school holidays, but there’s still plenty of time to enjoy a short break at a family-friendly hotel. Here are just a couple of ideas for half term UK breaks that all the family to enjoy.

Bespoke Hotels Marwell
Marwell Hotel

Zoofari at Marwell Hotel, near Winchester

What child doesn’t love the zoo? Nearby Marwell Zoo is one of the best in the country and features hundreds of animals, including giraffes, penguins, chipmunks and tigers, as well as the opportunity to learn about how to save endangered animals — and, if there’s time for a break from all that, three adventure playgrounds. Zoofari includes a one-night stay for two adults and two children in one of Marwell’s family rooms.

If you prefer to arrange your own programme for your half term UK breaks, Marwell also offers the Family Fun package. The children can enjoy a wide selection of indoor and outdoor activities and a range of local attractions. Besides the zoo, there’s Peppa Pig World, Intech Science Centre and Planetarium, as well as the beautiful New Forest to explore.

Bespoke Hotels Noel Arms
Noel Arms

Cotswold Wildlife Break at Noel Arms Hotel, Chipping Campden

From a picturesque base in the heart of the stunning Cotswolds, this one-night break includes a day at the Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens in Burford, where you’ll see animals ranging from lions to gibbons, crocodiles and meerkats.

You can watch some animals being fed and get close to many others in the children’s farmyard. The zoo also has a narrow-gauge railway and an adventure playground, so there’s loads to do while you’re out, and all the facilities of the Noel Arms to return to in the evening.

Cotswold House Hotel

Activities at the Lambert Arms, Watlington

Situated at the edge of the Chiltern Hills, near Oxford, the Lambert Arms is surrounded by attractions for the family perfect for half term UK breaks. You can enjoy a trip by steam train on the Chinnor & Princes Risborough Railway, walk along the Ridgeway and keep an eye open for a rare red kite, or learn more about one of the best-loved children’s authors at the Roald Dahl Museum.

On the other hand, you may have to negotiate with the kids as to whether you visit the famous Bicester Village shopping outlet or have fun swinging around at Go Ape! The Lambert Arms has several family rooms and welcomes pets with responsible owners.

These are just a few of the half term packages available across the UK, so instead of sitting at home why not have a great time as a family and book your half term UK break now?