England Adventure – Tylney Hall Hotel
We just returned from a week’s stay at Tylney Hall, and we couldn’t be more delighted. It was my second visit to the hotel (the first was a four-day stay in March 2012,) and I was thrilled with my return visit.
This was a vacation with my 16-year-old son and his first trip to England. The welcome from the hotel staff was excellent, and despite arriving at 9 a.m. after an overnight flight, our room was ready. We were upgraded to a garden suite with an adjoining conservatory which was delightful.
The hotel is less than an hour from London. It was perfectly located for our sightseeing trips to Windsor Castle, Legoland in Windsor, Highclere Castle in Newbury (location for the hit series “Downton Abbey,” and the Southwest Rail station in Hook for trips into London. After much debate and research, we hired Chineham Carriage Company to drive us to our tourist destinations and to the train station. It was far less expensive than renting a car, and Bob, the owner and our driver, is an absolute delight.
The hotel grounds and gardens are gorgeous, and we explored the water garden and duck pond, the gardens with espaliered trees, flowering perennials and exquisite planted gardens and urns. The Italian Garden is elegant, and the lawn by the terrace had a croquet set that gets a lot of use.
The hotel interior is decorated like a true English country estate with dark wood work, comfortable lounges, fireplaces, and beautiful flower arrangements and orchids. The rooms are comfortable and all different in shape and size; this is an old house. The bathrooms sparkle with marble floors, Molton Brown soaps and lotions, fluffy robes and towel warmers. The decor is a bit dated, but rooms are being renovated a few at a time.
The food at Tylney Hall was excellent and puts to rest any stereotype about English food; it is fresh and well-prepared in every setting. The buffet breakfast includes the “full English,” with a wide assortment of fruit, cereal, cold meat, cheese, and pastries. There is also a hot breakfast menu.
The lounge menu features snacks, sandwiches, salads and entrees, along with a full bar. The dinner service in the Oak Room was elegant. We started in the lounge with a drink, a silver server with olives, nuts and chips, and passed canapes. The staff took our order in the lounge, and carried our drinks into dinner when we were ready. After dinner, you can return to the lounge for coffee, and after-dinner drink and petit fours.
A Hotel for All Seasons
During our week’s stay, we saw business people, families with small children, a 50th anniversary party, a 40th birthday party and a wedding. Whether it’s a quick break, a family holiday or a celebration, the Tylney Hall Hotel is an elegant and fun home-away-from-home.