The best hotels an hour away from London

    19 November 2019

    Nothing blows off steam like a weekend away, but travelling halfway across the country for a two-night stay isn’t always worth the effort.

    The areas surrounding London are home to some stylish and breathtaking hotels. So whether you’re looking for a romantic getaway or a relaxing retreat, there are a number of standout spots just an hour away from the capital.

    Amano, West Malling

    Amaro, West Malling

    Amaro, West Malling

    Amano offers a little slice of Italy in a hidden corner of Kent. It’s the sister hotel to ​The Swan in West Malling, as well as the Swan at Shakespeare’s Globe in London. The hotel may be small – with just four boutique rooms – but it’s mighty. Each bedroom is contemporary and chic, with a selection of home comforts such as homemade biscotti.​ Downstairs, the hotel’s restaurant is a truly Italian affair with pasta, pizzas and cured meats. It also offers a two-course lunch menu from Monday to Saturday, as well as a Sunday menu featuring roast meats and Italian classics. The location of this hotel is something worth shouting about, too. West Malling is a quaint, historic market town with a plethora of chocolate box-worthy ​restaurants, pubs, cafés and tea-rooms.​ One notable spot is Frank’s Restaurant, which offers mussels cooked 22 different ways – including in Bloody Mary and Red Thai sauces.

    47 Swan St, ME19 6JU

    Artist Residence, Brighton

    This hotel truly embodies Brighton’s bohemian atmosphere. Spread across two townhouses on Regency Square, the spot boasts “artist” rooms, which have been individually decorated by local and international artists, alongside “house” rooms with up-cycled furniture and limited edition prints. Pooches are also welcome at this hotel for just £15 per night – a price which includes a cosy bed, a towel, food and treats. Everything is well put together and carefully thought out, from the calming Farrow & Ball painted walls to the street art and graffiti paintings. It’s a beautiful balance of cosy and contemporary. The Brighton hotel is the original of the Artist Residence Family – set up by husband and wife duo, ​Justin and Charlotte Salisbury.

    34 Regency Square, BN1 2FJ

    Coworth Park, Ascot

    Sculpture by Carol Peace at Coworth Park Hotel

    Coworth Park is a picturesque manor house set among 240 acres of Berkshire countryside. The five-star hotel is where Prince Harry and his best man Prince William, spent the night before his wedding, in 2018. It’s hardly a surprise that it won the hearts of the royals with its lavish four poster beds, enormous bathtubs and beautifully maintained grounds – even the swimming pool is lined with gigantic amethyst crystals. It’s the definition of luxury. The hotel’s food is another talking point. Since 2016, Adam Smith has been a culinary force in the kitchen at ​Restaurant Coworth Park – so much so, he even won a Michelin star for his efforts. Foodies looking to get a slice of the action will not be disappointed by Smith’s gourmet experience, The Tasting Table, where guests fill out a creative questionnaire in advance, so their meal is tailor-made to their unique flavour profile.

    Blacknest Rd, SL5 7SE

    The Wife of Bath, Wye

    This five-star hotel is located in the idyllic Kent village of Wye – just an hour and seven minutes from King’s Cross. The Grade-II listed building oozes character with exposed beams, bay windows and crooked floors just a few features to soak up. Chef Mark Sargeant and business partner Josh De Haan took over the spot in 2016, adding it to their portfolio of Kent locations. The venue is made up of three rooms in the main house, alongside two in the garden – all fittingly named after characters in the Canterbury Tales. On the food side of things, the restaurant offers and adventurous Northern Spanish-inspired menu.

    4 Upper Bridge St, TN25 5AF

    The Grove, Hertfordshire

    This leafy spot has attracted quite the celebrity clientele over the years. Hugh Grant, Kylie Minogue and the Beckhams are just a few names to have walked its corridors. The championship golf course and spa are the venue’s main selling points, but the 300 acres of countryside also boasts woodlands, wetlands and the Grand Union Canal – all great for walks. There are two different types of accommodation to choose from; the West Wing rooms which overlook the gardens, or the rooms and suites in Mansion House – each with their own theme. Designer Martin Hulbert fuses country home comforts – such as log fires, antiques and wood floors – with contemporary artworks and sculptures. In terms of dining, there are three glorious restaurants to choose from but The Glasshouse – headed up by Executive Chef, Stephen Wheeler – is known for its theatrics.

    Chandler’s Cross, WD3 4TG

    Beaverbrook, Surrey

    The rolling hills of Surrey are home to this historic treasure. Beverbrook is a Grade-II-listed country house set across 400 acres. Lord Beverbrook entertained some 20th century greats at his country home, including Ian Fleming, Elizabeth Taylor and Winston Churchill. In the main house, all the bedrooms are named after these notable guests. Interiors expert Susie Atkinson – also known for her work on the Soho House properties – is behind much of the decor. While the rooms nod to the hotel’s rich past, the restaurant is a wholly modern affair, with former Nobu chef Taiji Maruyama at the helm. Think cutting-edge Japanese cuisine. Leatherhead station is the closest to the hotel – simply jump on at London Victoria and you’ll be there in 50 minutes.

    Reigate Rd, KT22 8QX