AccommodationPosted by Dave Wise Sun, February 17, 2019 05:19PM
Located in the beautiful Kent village of Penshurst and opposite the stunning Penshurst Place, The Leicester Arms is an olde worlde hotel, restaurant and bar full of the sort of charm and gentle, hushed feeling you'd expect from a historic English pub.
They have 12 bedrooms, an airy restaurant serving modern British cuisine, a private dining room that seats 24 people around one table for special event/weddings, plenty of parking, a solid range of beers, wine and cider and a scenic beer garden.
We arrived early, just as the pub was opening, as we wanted to make the most of the day at Penshurst Place.
The staff were welcoming and leaving our bags at reception was no problem. Later, around 5pm, when we returned from a wonderful day out our bags were in our room, which was comfy, large and with a modern-Victorian look to it.
Breakfast was included and excellent; decent coffee and juice, avocado on toast and if you wanted them, poached eggs on top. There was also a meat option, and cereals.
The same quality was applied to the bar food, which we had in the evening. The grilled veg baguettes were warm and fresh, the fries chunky and the salad well dressed. Meaning it wasn't too dry, or oily, the avocado was perfectly ripe and every taste and texture worked together very nicely.
We enjoyed a couple of pints of Aspall's with it, you can't go wrong with that if you enjoy cider.
If you're strict vegan you could easily ask them to hold the cheese, the staff were friendly and nothing was a hassle. This was solid, simple eating, exactly what we wanted after a long day sightseeing and as a bonus we only had to haul ourselves upstairs afterwards to bed, rather than drive anywhere! Definitely plan on eating here if you're staying at the hotel, or if you're just visiting Penshurst Place consider the hotel for a light dinner before heading home.
This is a real local style hotel, friendly, unique, stylish and ready to give you a true garden of England experience.
The Leicester Arms Hotel
AccommodationPosted by Dave Wise Sun, February 17, 2019 04:29PM
Just 5 minutes walk from Marble Arch Tube station and Hyde Park, sitting right on Oxford St and across the road from one of Primark's flagship stores, the location of this 4 star hotel is hard to beat.
We loved our stay here whilst seeing the sights (Buckingham Palace is a half hour walk away, as is Trafalgar Square, and Hyde Park is great for pre-tourism running), the room was quiet, the service excellent, as was the food, and the plate of deserts and the handwritten welcome card left in our room on our first evening was a lovely touch.
The suite was huge, the bed very comfortable...
...and we had access to the executive lounge, which we'd recommend you take advantage of. It's where we relaxed after our days out and where we ate breakfast (buffet style with a mix of traditional English and Continental alongside felafel, humus and fresh salad if you'd rather more of a Middle Eastern start to the day). Snacks were available all day, with scones and jam among the offerings from lunch until about 5, then canapes from then until 7, and all the while the soft drinks, hot drinks, wine and beer were all complimentary.
We'd stay again in a heartbeat and we recommend you do to. Check out the website for the best deals.
The Amba Hotel Marble Arch
AccommodationPosted by Dave Wise Thu, January 17, 2019 01:06PM
The Travelodge on Abingdon Road is about 2 miles out of the city centre and easily reached by car or bus.https://www.travelodge.co.uk/
First of all, we must say that the vegan breakfast we had at this Travelodge was the best ever! I'm English, have had a full English all over my fair homeland and nothing touches this one. You can also eat vegetarian/omnivore here, too.
Every component was just right, from the non greasy Linda McCartney vegan sausages, tomatoes and mushrooms to the perfectly seasoned baked beans. Add to the fact that it's buffet style and that there are plenty of side choices (cereals, pastries, fruits) and you have a real feast that'll set you up for a day of sightseeing. You have to pay a little extra for it on top of the room rate but believe me, it's worth every penny, and it's served in a pleasant, airy downstairs area that we really enjoyed starting our day in.
The hotel itself is about 2 miles out of the city centre and easily reached by bus. We got off the airport bus in the centre of Oxford, then bought a bus ticket on a local bus that allowed us unlimited 24 hour travel on Oxford public transport (you buy these tickets on any bus) so this meant our journey from town to hotel cost around GBP1 each way. The bus dropped us at the park and ride, a 3 minute walk up the road from the hotel.
Our room was comfy, clean, modern and although it looked out on a main road it wasn't noisy at all, the window insulation was excellent.
Early check in/late check out is offered for a small extra fee, there is strong wifi and there are cheaper deals to be had if you book well in advance.
And if you enjoy running, there's a path leading all the way into Oxford; jogging around Christchurch College in the early morning when there were few people around was one of the highlights of my trip.
It's also a convenient location for visiting the outstanding Blenheim Palace, which can be easily reached using a bus from the city centre.
Travelodge Abingdon Road