Happy New Year my friends! I can’t believe it is another year and another decade already! If you ask me, time flies a bit too fast, don’t you think? Did you do any new year’s resolutions? Perhaps you might like to take more breaks? If that is the case, I have just the perfect place for you to recharge your batteries. Just before Christmas, my husband and I thought to have a weekend away to escape all the pre-Christmas stress and we went to Devon (south of UK, for those living outside of UK) to Lympstone Manor hotel. It was our first time, but I am sure it wasn’t our last.
Lympstone Manor hotel location
It takes about 1,5 hours from Bristol, where we live so it was super easy for us. From the centre of London, it would, however, take you just over 3 hours to drive or you can fly to Exeter and then take a taxi from there. It is about 10 minutes from Lympstone and about 40 min of coastal walk from Exmouth.
Design of the Lympstone Manor hotel
Traditional, elegant and with earthy tones which make you feel calm and relaxed. Originally an 18 century farmhouse, there is only about 20 or so rooms and all of them are called after birds you can spot in the area. This area is quite amazing for the bird watching, or so I was told. Rooms are simple but tasteful and sophisticated, again in beige colour scheme. Common areas look very familiar, more like someone home rather then a hotel. The dining room has less then 20 tables and they are far apart. During the dinner the atmosphere feels luxurious but calming. You definitely feel like you are not in stressful London. The two drawing rooms, both of which has fireplace are fairly small, which again adds to the whole private home feeling rather than a hotel. We went there just before Christmas so the beautiful Christmas decoration and the warmth coming from the fireplace created the perfect place to be and to escape to from your busy life. It is like time pretty much stops there, in a good way. We spent only two nights but I felt like it was much longer. That is how relaxed we felt.
Oh the food was fantastic. We started with a drink before dinner and got few canapes to spoil us up even more. The dinner menu is fairly short but it is one of those you have difficulty to choose from because you simply want to eat everything. You can also choose tasting menu but I generally don’t do that. As a starter I chose raw salmon, which was incredibly fresh and delicious though a little bit too big. For the main I chose turbot, one of my favourite fish. It was so beautifully cooked, I decided to have the same the second night as well. I got the sauce on the side though, which proved to be a good choice. The sauce was well balanced, but a bit too buttery for me to have it all on the fish. Puddings were not the ones I usually like so I chose cheese board instead. What a great choice I made. Great combination of strong and light cheeses really finished my dinner on high. My husband ordered a souffle and loved it. I am not much of a souffle person so can’t really judge, but it looked perfectly fluffy. Overall amazing food indeed.
What to do
If you like to go to the gym and have a spa treatment, then maybe this hotel is not for you. There is no gym and even though you can have a simple treatment like massage in your room, you might like to choose different activities. We had the most incredible walk on the coast which got us to Exmouth, where we had very informal lunch. You can basically walk for miles and miles, all with gorgeous view. You can also borrow some wellies if you want to experience the coastal walk on the beach. If walking is not your thing, Lympstone Manor hotel also have plenty of bikes or can arrange bird watching sessions. It is all about the outside here and that is precisely what we did. All day outside followed by the drinks and canapes in the cosy drawing room, sitting by the fireplace and later finished with delicious and romantic dinner. Perfect day, if you ask me.
I was slightly suspicious at first, before we went, as I wasn’t terribly happy withe the service at Belmond Le Manoir Hotel in Oxfordshire, but the service in Lymstone Manor is impeccable. From the moment we arrived, to the moment we left, everything worked like clock. All the staff was very welcoming, helpful and friendly. One of the highlights as also having a pantry room, where we could help ourselves with freshly made lemon cake and coffee or tea, anytime of the day. In the room, we always found fresh ice and (complimentary) few mini bottles of gin and tonic water to be able to make G&T. Apparently, anytime of the day is a G&T time. It is always little details like this, that makes you feel welcomed, don’t you think?
Would I go again?
Yes absolutely. In fact, we are already planning when we can have a weekend by ourselves to be able to plan a visit to Lymstone Manor hotel. It is exactly what one needs when one is stressed.
Have a chic day