One of the most anticipated hotel unveilings in a long time, Grantley Hall is open for business. Now a month old I look back at my recent stay at the 5* luxury hotel.
Grantley Hall was built by Thomas Norton in the 17th Century to celebrate his marriage – what a present! The hall has hosted royalty, Members of Parliament, celebrities, socialites… and now me (who?).
Current owner and Yorkshire lass, Valeria Sykes has spent the last three and a half years restoring the Grade II* listed country house back to its former glory. With 47 bedrooms, three restaurants including Shaun Rankin at Grantley Hall, an English Heritage-listed Japanese garden, an exclusive spa, and state of the art gym & wellness centre, it’s sure got appeal. Valeria’s vision when she started the renovation project was to utilise what’s on her doorstep – providing local employment, sourcing local produce is very much a reality as we drove up towards the beautiful Palladian style building.
“It was awfully good of you to park your own car Sir.” said the gentleman all in tweed heading our way. Opening the car boot, the man swiftly took our luggage and explained it was valet service. What service I thought but then again, we wouldn’t have seen the fabulous cars we parked among, from Aston Martins and Ferraris to Mustangs and even a Rolls Royce.
The grand entrance way was beautiful, greeted by happy smiley faces we checked in.
Romantic rooms at Grantley Hall
We stayed in bedroom 15, a Deluxe Double, with a starting price of £350.00 per room per night, including breakfast. It boasted a queen size bed, polished copper bath with views of the beautiful gardens and gin – I’m not leaving! Yes, when you stay at Grantley Hall you’re treated to their own Damson Gin, which is the perfect way to kick off a night with my love. To top it off two complimentary homemade lemonades arrived – the perfect tonic to the damson gin! I’m also a massive fan of the glass straws, so much better than paper which turns to mush.
The wardrobes, wrapping around nearly half of the room, concealed everything, including the entrance to the bathroom. In the wardrobe contained robes, slippers, Grantley Hall branded jackets and an umbrella; just in case you forgot your own. Niki (not suspicious at all) opened the umbrella inside… and that is when I fell in love with it. Inside was the most beautiful floral design – so pretty!
Like most luxury hotels there was a pillow menu for those who would like a firm, soft, fibre or feather pillow. Grantley Hall also offer a Robe menu. Who knew there were different types of robes?
A snoop around Grantley Hall
As it was so miserable outside, we decided to take advantage of our surroundings and explored the hotel. We somehow made our way to the beautiful atrium and the Presidential Suite, still under construction at the time of our visit, one can only imagine what it will be like inside, with it’s whopping price tag of £5,000 a night.
Stepping away from the Presidential Suite we walked towards the bar, enjoying the exquisite interior along the way. The hansom oak panelled Norton Bar took advantage of the views across the driveway, towards the fountain and landscapes gardens. The bartender, Michael served us with a bottle of sparkling water, olives and the most delicious smoked almonds I’ve ever tasted, before taking our drinks order. I went for The Fresco of Caroline “A widows kiss” (£14.00), a theatrical cocktail named after Caroline Norton, who was a key member of the House of Commons and stood for the woman’s vote. She also spent time writing at the Hall.
The rain slightly eased giving us chance to explore the enchanting Japanese garden, and surrounding gardens. Although still a work in progress with lots more building work to be complete, the grounds are like something taken from once-upon-a-time and must be explored when there.
The Three Graces Spa at Grantley Hall
Only accessible to guests of the hotel, the spa is designed to cocoon you the moment you walk in, the spa offers a bespoke menu of treatments, including facials which use luxury Spanish skincare experts Natura Bissé. The changing rooms offered all I could have needed from spacious showers with ila products to marble topped dressing tables. In each locker, accessible by a code – so no key or wristband – had flipflops, two towels and a robe.
The spa, with its regal columns lining the indoor pool felt almost Roman like. It offers a therapy pool which leads to an outdoor area, yet to be completed. Among the usual sauna, steam and experience shower, The Three Graces Spa have a snow room said to increase circulation… and bravery!
Elite, state of the art Gym & Wellness
The Elite is thought to be among the best fitness facilities in the country, perfect for attracting athletes on rehabilitation or those serious in wanting to enhance their health and fitness. Along with a host of high-tech equipment, the gym also offers group sessions from yoga, spinning, and meditation.
Eating at Grantley Hall
Grantly has three restaurants – A fine dining experience at Shaun Rankin at Grantley Hall, casual dining at Fletchers Restaurant, and an Asian infused experience at Eighty Eight. The hotel also offers afternoon tea in the Drawing Room, a selection of healthy bits at the Three Graces Spa Lounge. Opting for Eighty Eight, we hopped in a golf buggy (as it was raining) and headed to a very contemporary building across the way.
Eighty Eight was the right choice for us – modern, playful and creative. We both felt quite at home. In fact, the resident DJ played most of Niki’s Spotify most played list. Our server, John was funny, engaging and a giggle. Each time he came over Niki seemed to be doing something daft. Bold flavours, meant it was worlds apart from the refined hotel we’d just left.
Breakfast fit for a king
After a restful night, we headed for breakfast in the Fletchers Restaurant. Breakfast is included in the room rate and you had the option of continental as well as something from the hot menu. The oak panelled room overlooked beautiful landscaped gardens and the weir beyond. Niki chose scrambled eggs with smoked salmon, while I went for summer berry pancakes.
Would I go back?
In a heartbeat, I have fallen in love with Grantley Hall. No time is wasted there, one minute you could be bathing in the baths in Rome, then next taking a theatrical cocktail in an English country home and finally ending up in the flavours of Asia. It was a round-the-world trip all in one place.
Yes, it is expensive, and yes they need to sort out the finishing touches in the garden and hotel but I truly believe it is an experience worth every penny. I wish them all the very best and hope to go back one day soon!
Rooms at Grantley Hall will start from £350 per room, per night including breakfast.
Find out more www.grantleyhall.co.uk
Booking is essential.
Spa can only be accessed by guests of the hotel.
Grantley Hall, Ripon North Yorkshire HG4 3ES
ADVERT | INVITE: I was invited to review this hotel via Just Venues.