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Mostly Food & Travel Journal

Andaz London: Afternoon Tea

Apple Apartments - The Strand

Ashdown Park Hotel

Balmer Lawn - New Forest

Batam and Bali via Singapore Lounge

Bel and the Dragon, Churt

Brooklands Hotel Surrey

Careys Manor Hotel, New Forest

Castle Hotel Windsor Afternoon Tea

Cheval Harrington Court

Cheval Three Quays

The Danna, Langkawi Malaysia

The Dorchester: Afternoon Tea

Dukes Hotel: Afternoon Tea

Dukes Hotel: Bar for Martini

Dukes Hotel: Restaurant Thirty Six

Etruscan Chocohotel, Perugia, Italy

The French Horn, Sonning

The Garden House – a stay with friends

The Garden House Restaurant

Grand Hyatt Kuala Lumpur

Innotel Hotel, Singapore

Ivy Roost Cottage, New Forest

Luton Hoo, Bedfordshire

Luton Hoo - Champagne Taittinger

Majestic Malacca, Malaysia

The Montagu Arms, New Forest

The New Majestic Hotel, Singapore

Montigo Resort in Bali, Indonesia

Montigo Resort in Batam, Indonesia

Park Regis, Singapore

Phoenicia Hotel, Malta

Phoenicia, Malta - A Phoenician Kitchen Garden

Radisson Edwardian Grafton Hotel

Raffles Hotel, Singapore

The Ritz-Carlton, Millenia Singapore: Afternoon Tea

The Ritz-Carlton, Millenia Singapore: Brunch

Roch Castle

St Ermin’s Hotel: Winter Wonderland Afternoon Tea

Stoke Park

The Talbot Inn, Ripley

Hotel TerraVina for Bed and Breakfast

Vila Vita Parc Resort, Algarve, Portugal

Warren House – Kingston

Country House Collection


Earlier Hotel Reviews
 

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Hotel Reviews
(click for Country House Collection)

Roch Castle

Roch
Hotel review: The castle is perched in imposing fashion on a rocky outcrop on the edge of the village of Roch, between St Davids with its stunning cathedral, and Haverfordwest, and just a few minutes’ drive from the spectacular Pembrokeshire coast. As castles go Roch has impeccable historic credentials... Read More

The Garden House – a stay with friends

Garden House Hotel review: This truly is a ‘garden’ house. It was originally a small building (in comparison to the mansion up the road) but has been extended, although it still retains the character of a cosy cottage. Many of the public rooms are intimate, giving the impression of home rather than hotel. Yes, perhaps that’s the charm of the Garden House. One has the sense that one is staying with friends... Read More

The Garden House Restaurant, Beaverbrook

beaverbrook Restaurant review: It’s part of the Beaverbrook Estate and the smaller of two hotels, the other being the lavish and imposing main house which was once the home of Lord Beaverbrook. Head Chef Kaz Suzuki was born in Japan and moved to New Zealand at the age of 14. He brings a unique flair to the Garden House Restaurant where he offers fresh and seasonal ingredients in both classic and innovative dishes... Read More

Luton Hoo to Stay

Luton Hoo
Hotel review: Most people will have had at least a glimpse of Luton Hoo, even if they don’t know it. Its architecture is outstanding, reflecting the very best of this type of opulent home. It has appeared in many films including A Shot in the Dark, Four Weddings and a Funeral, Eyes Wide Shut, and The Secret Garden... Read More

Castle Hotel Windsor Afternoon Tea - Sofitel Sensory Storytelling

Castle Hotel Windsor
Afternoon Tea review: The Castle Hotel has a contemporary take on the usual 3-tier stand. Delicate finger sandwiches and smoked salmon graced the middle shelf. The ground floor held some rather good scones. These were generous, flavourful and had a real home-made quality about them... Read More

Montigo in Batam Indonesia

Batam
Hotel review: This stunning resort is ideal as part of a 2-venue holiday. Discerning adults will love shopping, museums, and entertainment in Singapore but equally will appreciate the sophistication and quiet of Montigo Resorts Nongsa, whilst the kids will be thrilled by swimming pools and the kids’ club... Read More

Champagne Taittinger at Luton Hoo

Luton Hoo Hotel review: Luton Hoo is arguably one of the finest examples of its genre. A stay laced with dinner and champagne was likely to be memorable, and indeed it was. Luton Hoo offers several wine dinners every year and they are understandably popular with regular visitors, those who are celebrating, and others who are interested in learning more about the best of wines... Read More

Batam and Bali via Singapore Lounge

Batam-Bali-Singapore-Lounge Hotel review: Any vacation should start as soon as the head of the household is safely lodged in the cattery, the central heating is set to just ticking over, you have informed the neighbours for security and to make them jealous, the front door is closed and you are off... Read More

The Talbot to Stay

The Talbot Hotel review: The Talbot has the classic architecture. There is the arch through which the coaches and horses once entered. The original building is dated to about 1453 and it has always been a coaching inn. There are still stables, though now refurbished. Small windows and terracotta roof tiles all witnessed a very different time... Read More

Balmer Lawn – New Forest Stay

Balmer Lawn - New Forest Stay Hotel review: Plenty of history here. During World War One the hotel was used as a field hospital. Several years ago refurbishment works uncovered spent ammunition, empty cigarette packets, and a priceless collection of WWII documents under the floor of bedroom 10... Read More

Bali with Montigo Resorts

bali Hotel review: Montigo Resorts Seminyak, on Bali, has an outstanding location along the famed Jalan Petitenget. Seminyak, a cosmopolitan district, lies along the south-western coast, to the north of Legian and just 30 minutes from the island’s Denpasar International Airport. One stays in spacious and well-appointed rooms with all the expected technology and perhaps even a private patio... Read More

Hotel TerraVina for Bed and Breakfast

TerraVina Hotel review: We are blessed with many fine hotels in the UK. All the 5* chains are well represented in all major cities. But we also have a wealth of boutique and Country House hotels and each is unique and characterful. The New Forest is beautiful and mostly unspoilt and it also has hotels which reflect the area’s style... Read More

Bel, the Dragon and the Village

Bel and the Dragon Hotel review: Everything here reminds one of home. Well, not my home exactly, but the home of someone who has a degree in Interior Design and another one in Hospitality. One has the sense that the owner might walk in with a gun over one arm and a brace of hounds at his heels. He would warmly welcome the guest to his home and enquire if they might need anything... Read More

Cheval Harrington Court – Apartment Hotel

Harrington Court
Hotel review: Cheval Harrington Court is a residential hotel or an aparthotel or a boutique hotel that feels like home ...if your home happens to be luxurious, that is. Its location is unbeatable... Read More

The Phoenicia Hotel in Malta

The Phoenicia Hotel in Malta Hotel review: What do we look for in a vacation? Some pampering – that probably isn’t like home. Sun is good – that’s different from home. Food – you won’t be doing the cooking as it’s not home. Language – mostly the same as home would be nice.  That adds up to the Phoenicia Hotel in Malta. Luxury, weather, ease of communication, and then there are memorable meals.... Read More

A Phoenician Kitchen Garden

A Phoenician Kitchen Garden
Hotel review: All good chefs will agree that freshness is key to good dishes. That philosophy cuts across all ethnic culinary persuasions. Malta has a climate that any keen gardener would envy. It is typically Mediterranean, with weather that one would expect... Read More

Cheval Three Quays

Three Quays hotel review
Hotel review: Cheval Three Quays is a truly striking collection of new luxury serviced apartments. But where exactly is Three Quays? It’s on the banks of the Thames and next to Sugar Quay, which reminds us of the days when this river bristled with cargo ships... Read More

Warren House – Kingston

warren house Hotel review: We might be in London for a short holiday. We see the sights, monuments, museums. We shop till we drop and we are swept along by throngs of others looking for the same delights of retail therapy. But there is another vision of England... Read More

Brooklands Hotel Surrey

Brooklands Hotel Surrey
Hotel review: I live in West London but whenever I consider a weekend break I turn right instead of left at the end of the road. That takes me to central London with the thronging crowds, fuss and rush. Lots of excitement, it’s true, but it hardly constitutes relaxation, and perhaps if I turn left... Read More

Sweet Valentines - Etruscan Chocohotel – Perugia, Italy

International hotel review
Hotel review: Chocolate is a traditional Valentines gift and is still welcomed, but think of the impact a whole chocolate hotel would have. No, dear gluttonous reader, the hotel isn’t exactly made from chocolate but is stuffed with enough of that confection to warrant the title of Chocohotel; and what’s more it’s in Italy... Read More

The Strand Apple Apartments

Apple Strand Residential Hotel review: We love to travel, and a stay at a good hotel is always a treat but it’s hard to find that home-from-home feeling. We long for the flexibility of our own kitchen and a sense that we have our own front door. There is a solution for this dilemma... Read More

Vila Vita Parc Resort, Algarve, Portugal

International hotel review
Hotel review: This is Portugal’s playground, but there is much more to recommend it than its magnificent beaches and world-class golf courses. Vila Vita Parc is a 5-star resort with its own beach attached, but it offers leisure opportunities far beyond a stretch of sand... Read More

Vila Vita Parc - Wining and Dining in The Algarve

International hotel review Hotel review: Vila Vita Parc is described as a resort and it boasts 5 well-deserved stars. Its food mirrors the quality of its accommodations and facilities. The guest is presented with outstanding grazing from breakfast to dinner. Wine-lovers will not feel the need to wander, as this 2-venue establishment is proud of its cellars and indeed its vineyard... Read More

Vila Vita Parc and Herdade dos Grous

International hotel review
Hotel review: Vila Vita Parc and Herdade dos Grous offer two faces of hospitality and culinary excellence. Each venue has its own style and will appeal to those who appreciate attention to detail. Herdade dos Grous would make a delightful winter, spring or autumn break... Read More

Grand Hyatt Kuala Lumpur

International hotel review Hotel review: The ground floor entrance to the Grand Hyatt is imposing, spacious and airy and what one would hope for in this standard of Asian hotel. Its sweeping staircase, pond and a crescent-shaped sculpture which is symbolic of Brunei and Malaysia, is the centrepiece... Read More

Dukes Hotel Bar for Martini

International hotel review
Hotel review: There are many great hotels in London. There is a host of memorable boutique hotels in London. There are several with stylish bars in London. There is only one Dukes Bar in the whole world... Read More

Majestic Malacca

Asian restaurant review Hotel review: The Majestic Hotel in Malacca provides all that the discerning traveller might want. It’s unique and nothing like the usual 5* hotel which although well-appointed will have a degree of familiar sameness – yes, very comforting but one might awake wondering if this is Brussels …or Bratislava, as the drapes are the same. No, The Majestic is bespoke, polished and full of local character... Read More

Park Regis – Singapore

Asian restaurant review
Hotel review: Park Regis Singapore is centrally located in the heart of the city and that’s just where you will want to be, and especially if your break is a short one. There is so much that is within walking distance, and that’s ‘easy’ walking distance... Read More

Raffles Hotel - Raffles Courtyard for a taste of Italy

Asian restaurant review Hotel review: Tell anyone that you have just returned from Singapore and the question on their lips is bound to be ‘Did you visit Raffles?’ They don’t have to dignify that name with any appendage: everyone knows that there is only one Raffles and that’s the hotel... Read More

The Ritz Singapore Spring Weekend Afternoon Tea

asian restaurant review
Hotel review: The Ritz-Carlton Singapore is one of my favourite comfort destinations. It’s a delight to stay there but also to visit and enjoy on Sundays when work is over, or when one needs a civilised sit-down garnished with stunningly delicious food. They are famed for their Sunday Brunch but they also present a seasonal Sunday Afternoon Tea... Read More

The Ritz-Carlton, Millenia Singapore Grand Vintage Champagne Sunday Brunch

asian restaurant review
Hotel review: Sunday Brunch at The Ritz must surely rate as one of the finest of its genre. The smart-casual event is famed. It’s not stuffy and muted. The staff are friendly and helpful. There is a buzz of conversation from groups of guests enjoying good company along with that unbeatable food. It offers an excuse to dress up a little and to indulge a lot... Read More

Majestic Restaurant Singapore

Majestic Restaurant Singapore
Hotel review: There is good food to be had all over Singapore. It’s famed for it. One can sit with the locals and enjoy a bowl of laksa at one of the numerous, cheap and buzzing hawker centres. There are small side-street restaurants specialising in steaming bowls of congee for breakfast through to hot, grilled skewers of meat after the sun goes down... Read More

St Ermin’s – Winter Wonderland Afternoon Tea

International hotel review Hotel review: St Ermin’s is offering a delightfully seasonal afternoon tea called Winter Wonderland. It does indeed showcase some wintery ingredients but perhaps the chef should consider having this as an option all year. It would be ideal for men... Read More

Restaurant Thirty Six at Dukes Hotel London

International hotel review Hotel review: Think about Old London and what scene comes to mind? Fog, intertwined alleys and hidden courtyards, probably. Iron railings, warm brick, brass plaques. And hotels: yes, every Edwardian writer seemed to talk about hotels. They were the acceptable places in which to meet friends and to dine, when restaurants were less numerous than they are today... Read More

Ivy Roost Cottage – The New Forest

hotel review Holiday cottage review: Ivy Roost is a large thatched cottage dating back some 400 years. It has secluded gardens that are immaculate with lawns, borders and fruit trees. There are paved terraces for taking traditional afternoon tea... Read More

Careys Manor Hotel in The New Forest

International hotel review Hotel review: Two of the top hotels in the New Forest National Park have been awarded the Tripadvisor Certificate of Excellence 2012: Careys Manor & SenSpa in Brockenhurst and its sister hotel The Montagu Arms in Beaulieu have both received that honour, and one can see why... Read More

The Montagu Arms – New Forest

International hotel review Hotel review: The Montagu Arms is on the Beaulieu Estate but not owned by it, and was built around 200 years ago. Since the 16th century there has been an inn on the site of this hotel, which would originally have been a meeting place for the commoners. It held timber auctions and a cattle market, which took place at the inn until 1809... Read More

The French Horn at Sonning

International hotel review
Hotel review: Close to The French Horn is The Mill at Sonning and the hotel has the original mill cottages as part of their property; in fact those cottages now constitute the majority of the guest accommodation. It’s a perfect terrace of small houses with lawns down to the river... Read More

Ashdown Park Hotel

International hotel review
Hotel review: This large imposing building exudes classic charm but there is nothing stuffy or stiff here. It has all the polish and more of a 4-star hotel but the friendliness of the staff makes one feel that this could be a family-run B&B – admittedly the largest and best appointed... Read More

Andaz London for Afternoon Tea

International hotel review
Hotel review: 1901 at Andaz Restaurant has an 80-seat capacity with plenty of space between tables. The high moulded ceiling and the striking stained-glass dome add still more to the light. A classic space retaining all the charm of the original... Read More

Innotel Hotel Singapore

International hotel review Hotel review: It’s a shame that Singapore is so often viewed as just a stop-over. Folks are likely to stay for just a day or so; they love it but then move on. For me it’s a destination in its own right, with hotels and restaurants to fit every pocket and plenty of things to do when one isn’t either sleeping or eating, although dining is a 6 times a day hobby in this region... Read More

Stoke Park

International hotel review Hotel review: It’s the kind of country-house estate that we believe has disappeared. How can there be anything this magnificent so close to London (only 35 minutes from the capital and 7 miles from Heathrow Airport)? But here it is in all its splendour. In fact it’s such an icon of classic British architecture that it’s been featured in films such as Bridget Jones’s Diary and several James Bond films... Read More

The Dorchester for Afternoon Tea

International hotel review Hotel review: I am an unashamed supporter of The Dorchester. It’s iconic and has endured – it’s been around for decades, since the start of the 1930s, and its façade still reflects those striking and chiselled architectural features of the Art Deco era. The Dorchester is a vision of pale grey but its colourful and ever-changing front garden softens those sharp lines... Read More

Afternoon Tea at Dukes

International hotel review Hotel review: Dukes boutique hotel is tucked away in a quiet courtyard in London’s stylish St James’s.  It was the winner of "England’s Leading Boutique Hotel" at the World Travel Awards 2011 and it’s no surprise. Whilst its salubrious location is part of the charm it still stands apart from much of the local competition... Read More

Radisson Edwardian Grafton Hotel - London

International hotel review Hotel review: It’s the location of The Grafton that is part of its appeal. Many hotels boast “good transport links” but The Grafton could hardly have a better position. Some guests at the hotel might be fortunate enough to have a suite with a view over an iconic London Underground station... Read More

The Danna - beachside luxury - Langkawi Malaysia

The Danna Hotel review: Langkawi, or to give its official title, Langkawi the Jewel of Kedah – in Malay Langkawi Permata Kedah – is a tropical paradise. Its beaches are legendary, its skies mostly blue, and the sea is mesmerising. Nothing needed apart from a rather smart hotel... Read More
 

Country House Collection

The Garden House – a stay with friends

Garden House Hotel review: This truly is a ‘garden’ house. It was originally a small building (in comparison to the mansion up the road) but has been extended, although it still retains the character of a cosy cottage. Many of the public rooms are intimate, giving the impression of home rather than hotel. Yes, perhaps that’s the charm of the Garden House. One has the sense that one is staying with friends... Read More

The Garden House Restaurant, Beaverbrook

beaverbrook Restaurant review: It’s part of the Beaverbrook Estate and the smaller of two hotels, the other being the lavish and imposing main house which was once the home of Lord Beaverbrook. Head Chef Kaz Suzuki was born in Japan and moved to New Zealand at the age of 14. He brings a unique flair to the Garden House Restaurant where he offers fresh and seasonal ingredients in both classic and innovative dishes... Read More

Luton Hoo to Stay

Luton Hoo
Hotel review: Most people will have had at least a glimpse of Luton Hoo, even if they don’t know it. Its architecture is outstanding, reflecting the very best of this type of opulent home. It has appeared in many films including A Shot in the Dark, Four Weddings and a Funeral, Eyes Wide Shut, and The Secret Garden... Read More

Champagne Taittinger at Luton Hoo

Luton Hoo Hotel review: Luton Hoo is arguably one of the finest examples of its genre. A stay laced with dinner and champagne was likely to be memorable, and indeed it was. Luton Hoo offers several wine dinners every year and they are understandably popular with regular visitors, those who are celebrating, and others who are interested in learning more about the best of wines... Read More

Warren House – Kingston

warren house Hotel review: We might be in London for a short holiday. We see the sights, monuments, museums. We shop till we drop and we are swept along by throngs of others looking for the same delights of retail therapy. But there is another vision of England... Read More

Ashdown Park Hotel

International hotel review
Hotel review: This large imposing building exudes classic charm but there is nothing stuffy or stiff here. It has all the polish and more of a 4-star hotel but the friendliness of the staff makes one feel that this could be a family-run B&B – admittedly the largest and best appointed... Read More

Stoke Park

International hotel review Hotel review: It’s the kind of country-house estate that we believe has disappeared. How can there be anything this magnificent so close to London (only 35 minutes from the capital and 7 miles from Heathrow Airport)? But here it is in all its splendour. In fact it’s such an icon of classic British architecture that it’s been featured in films such as Bridget Jones’s Diary and several James Bond films... Read More

Brockencote Hall, Worcestershire

restaurant and hotel review Hotel review: We visited Brockencote on a bright spring day. Daffs were glowing and new-born lambs were gamboling. The Worcestershire countryside was at its fresh and budding best and the Hall looked impressive in the sunshine. The estate dates back 300 years or so with 70 acres of established trees and pasture... Read More

The Elms Hotel, Worcestershire

restaurant review Hotel review: This is an imposing Queen Anne mansion. Go on, admit it, you can’t remember who Queen Anne was and didn’t know she was a builder. The Elms dates from 1710 and the exterior has all the elegant proportions of a stately home of that period. It was designed by architect Thomas White who was a pupil of the renowned Sir Christopher Wren... Read More



<< Earlier Reviews

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