Located in southwest England, the county of Devon attracts tourists the world over. Home to rolling hillside, white sandy beaches, the dramatic landscape of the Dartmoor National Park, picturesque seaside towns and picture postcard villages nestled away in the countryside. South Devon has a lot to offer visitors and it is little wonder why this is such a popular destination for both those looking for a staycation and those travelling to the UK from abroad. When it comes to looking for the best place to stay for your trip, South Devon has a wealth of incredible hotels. But look no further than these three incredible hotels which I had the pleasure of staying in last year which were nothing short of excellent. If you want luxury accommodation in South Devon then these hotels are for you!
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The Best Luxury Accommodation In South Devon
Set in the heart of Devon in the breathtaking Dartmoor National Park, this 275 acre estate will transport you from the modern day into a magical world of your own. From the moment you drive onto the estate and make your way down the long drive to the moment you clap eyes on the castle itself, you will be utterly bowled over. This is a place where you will feel like Royalty.
Bovey Castle delivers on stateliness and glamour. This hotel boasts sweeping mahogany staircases, mullioned windows, chandeliers in abundance, oak panelling, grand pianos, two restaurants, a spa, pool, falconry, tenis court, golf range, helipad.. not to mention some rather grand fireplaces which make for the perfect spot to perch next to with a tumbler of whiskey whilst you listen to the crackle of the the fire and bask in its warmth on a cool evening. Just thinking about this place makes me wish I was back there again!
This Neo-Elizabethan manor house was built in 1908 and was one of many properties owned by William Henry Smith aka WHSmith. In fact, it was built by his son Frederick as one of the family’s many country retreats. After the death of his father there was a £1 million death duty tax bill to pay and so Bovey along with the surrounding lands were sold off. The house then passed into the hands of Great Western Railway who opened it up as a golfing hotel in 1930.
It wasn’t until 2014 that the hotel became part of the award winning Eden Hotel Collection who gave Bovey Castle a multi-million pound refurbishment and turned it into the jewel it is today. I love that they give a nod to its history through the naming of their 3 AA Rosette restaurant, the ‘Great Western’. You can’t miss treating yourself to a meal in the Great Western during a stay here, it is nothing short of superb. Nothing is left wanting in the attention to detail through out service and the food is all cooked to perfection. Using seasonal produce, the restaurant serves dishes using classic ingredients with a modern twist.
After an evening of feasting on delicious morsels you should pamper yourself with a treatment in the hotels award winning spa. Here you can find an array of rejuvenating spa treatments from a classic massage or facial to aromatherapy or reflexology treatments. I was treated to a heavenly back massage and facial by one of their expert team and left feeling thoroughly relaxed and rejuvenated. I went back to my room the calmest I had felt in a long time. Completely de-stressed, all knots in my back melted away (photographer problem!).
If you want the full regal experience, book yourself into on of the suites. Complete with lounge, dining area, roll top bath, separate shower and bathroom and the most luxurious bed which you just won’t want to leave. My suite was on the south western corner and had the most enchanting views out over Dartmoor. When I opened my window up in the morning, the mist and fog had rolled into the valley and made the scene even more picturesque that I had thought possible.
To get to Buckland Tout-Saints you will need to leave the main roads behind and head down quiet country lanes. About a half hour later you will pop out at this grand 15th century country house turned luxury hotel. This countryside gem is set in the remote village of Buckland Tout-Saints in South Devon, home to under 200 residents. It offers a fully secluded retreat in the Devonshire countryside where you can wake up to the sound of birdsong and the kind of peace and quiet that nothing like the countryside can offer. Buckland Tout-Saints really is a secret escape and you won’t regret booking yourself a stay here in one of their 16 beautifully styles rooms. You can even bring your dog along and there is a separate dog friendly dining room.
The hotel itself takes its name from the village and is set in 4 and a half acres of beautifully tended gardens and woodland. Upon entering you are met with all the period features you would expect from a property of this age. Magnificent wood-panelled drawing rooms (which come with a story to tell, having been dismantled from a nearby church), window seats, tapestries, oil paintings, marble fireplaces, creaky floorboards and charm and character in abundance. Not to mention the exceptionally friendly, warm and welcoming service you are greeted with.
After setting my bags down in my room I made a beeline for the stunning Queen Anne restaurant, complete with Russian pine panelling and 2 AA Rosette’s. Dinner began with a superb carrot velouté with a coconut foam, drizzled with a herb oil, followed by Dartmoor Venison loin with a braised haunch, beetroot and a swede mash. The meal ended with a magnificent pudding of mango parfait with textures of orange, passionfruit and coconut. Each of these three courses was paired with the perfect wine. Dining in the Queen Anne restaurant was the ideal indulgence to end the day. I headed up the creaky staircase to bed a thoroughly happy Stacy.
In the morning, breakfast is served in a beautiful pastel-blue room looking out onto the grounds – which on this particular morning were illuminated by soft autumnal sunlight. There is a great selection of cooked options from a full English, Eggs Benedict to grilled kippers. I tucked in heartily, setting myself up for a day of explorations. There is a lot to discover close by! Buckland Tout-Saints is near to some of South Devon’s best white sandy beaches, the pretty sailing town of Salcombe and some stunning coastal walks along the idyllic Devonshire coastline like East Soar.
Before checking out the I got to have a peek around all the other rooms. I can confirm that they were all just as lovely as the suite I got to stay in! I loved the size of the rooms, particularly the high ceilings they all have. Perks of being in a 15th century manor house.
Kitley house sits prettily within over 600 acres of parks and woodland, footed by a lake at the end of a long, tree lined drive. This 500 year old manor house will give you a very warm welcome. Quite literally! Walking through the heavy, wooden front door of this grade one listed manor, you are met with the most fantastic wood panelled reception room. Complete with coats of arms and the most magnificent fireplace, logs crackling away. The perfect invitation on a cold winters afternoon as it was when I stayed. Seats either side make this entrance truly inviting and sets the tone for the rest of your stay. You can expect a very relaxed atmosphere at Kitley House, the perfect spot to unwind for a long weekend away.
Kitley House is the ideal place to base yourself for exploring the area south west of the Dartmoor National Park, in between Plymouth and Salcombe. With the likes of historical buildings Buckland Abbey (former home of Sir Frances Drake) and Saltram House close by and picturesque seaside villages like Noss Mayo only a short drive away, you won’t be short of places to explore!
The hotel boasts touches of luxury in each of its rooms. Pleasingly squishy sofas, padded window seats, roaring fires, thick curtains, four poster beds, a grand piano, stained glass windows. Just take a look at the photos of this place and you will see what I mean! I got the stay in the beautiful Rodney Suite, an incredibly spacious room that was perfectly styled with pieces of antique furniture and magnificent views out over the garden. Views that were particularly incredible in the morning with the sun rising over the horizon creating magical pastel skies. I sat taking in this wonderful scene with a cup of tea in hand, watching as a bouquet of pheasants roamed the grounds searching for early morning nibbles. It was quite the idyllic start to the day after an evening spent indulging in the restaurant.
When staying at Kitley House you should make sure to head to the bar and treat yourself to a cocktail before dinner in the One AA Rosette restaurant that sits overlooking the lake and grounds below. The food is all locally sourced and made with seasonal ingredients. The dining room itself is very elegant with a massive stone fireplace and marble columns, yet with an informal feel which I loved. The ideal spot to end your evening after a day exploring the scenic Devonshire countryside.
When it comes to luxury accommodation in South Devon, you really need look no further that these three magnificent hotels. I am certain that you will enjoy your stay in them as much as I did! Any one of these hotels really will be the icing on the cake to a wonderful weekend away in Devon creating incredible new memories.
Have you stayed in any of these hotels? Tell me what you think in the comments below.
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