Last weekend I had the chance to indulge in a little bit of relaxation at the beautiful Kentisbury Grange Hotel. My stay was complimentary, however I have not received payment for the following review. All opinions are my own.
Kentisbury Grange is a stunning country hotel which boasts a variety of boutique bedrooms, an award-winning restaurant and chic interiors that are guaranteed to make you swoon. It’s an ideal country escape for those of us who’ve developed a taste for the finer things in life (when we can afford them) and it seems to have successfully attracted it’s fair share of Instagram celebrities and diehard foodies alike.
Where is it?
You’ll find this luxury destination on the edge of Exmoor National Park in North Devon. Like most countryside establishments, it’s a little bit of a trek to get there, but you won’t be short of breathtaking views along the way. Nearby towns include Barnstaple and South Molton.
Who should I go with?
Without a doubt, this is a very romantic destination and many of the hotel’s special deals seem to suggest that it is ideal for couples looking for a romantic getaway in the country.
However, due to recent circumstances, I ended up visiting Kentisbury Grange on my own and I had the most fantastic time. To be fair, there was a moment when I was sat on a pretty chaise lounge contemplating whether or not I should attempt to drink an entire bottle of champagne on my own. There was also that moment when I was sat in the Coach House Restaurant, enjoying an entire 6 course tasting menu by lonesome. Apparently, I have no shame. But in all honesty it is incredibly liberating to visit such a beautiful destination by yourself and the staff are all so incredibly lovely that you’ll feel right at home on a solo break.
What are the rooms like?
I stayed in Room 8 of the main house during my visit. My room was absolutely beautiful and had everything you would need for a weekend stay. As well as a bottle of Michael Caines Blanc de Blanc Champagne upon arrival (as part of the Gourmet Night Package), I was greeted by homemade biscuits, tea & coffee making facilities, plenty of glossy magazines and some rather tempting toiletries, including lavender bath salts.
The room was very tastefully decorated and sympathetic to the building itself. There are also a number of luxury chalets and lodges outside of the main building, which I am led to believe are very contemporary in style. I think having such a variety of style is a great idea, as I’m a real fan of the more traditional, whereas I know many people who would prefer to stay in brighter, more modern accommodation.
There isn’t an awful lot to do at Kentisbury Grange except to relax and unwind. There are of course plenty of games to play and books to read in the gorgeous drawing room (which is so painfully boutique it’s like they plucked it straight out of my dream home) but aside from that, you’re pretty much left to your own devices. You could of course venture out into one of the nearby towns or go for a walk on Exmoor. However, I would honestly make the most of your free time and definitely enjoy a meal in the Coach House during your stay.
Without a doubt Kenitsbury has an amazing atmosphere. Every member of staff was happy to stop & talk and despite the hotel’s stylish presentation you really don’t feel like it is at all pretentious. There’s a slight vibe to the main building which reminds me of an updated National Trust property, but I actually thought this was rather charming. Equally, as I made my way up the short hill to the Coach House Restaurant on the evening, there was something incredibly homely about the whole setup that made me feel very welcome.
What to Eat
I’d heard a lot of good things about Kentisbury Grange through the foodie grapevine. The Coach House by Michael Caines has been awarded three AA Rosettes in 2017 and Gold for Restaurant of the Year in the South West Tourism Awards. During my visit I tried the 6 course tasting menu as part of the Gourmet Package and I was presented with plate after plate of beautifully presented, very well balanced food. Dishes included Butter Poached Lemon Sole, Pan Roasted Venison with Chocolate, and a Coffee Walnut Sponge. I’ll be honest, if I was paying for the meal, I maybe wouldn’t have opted for this menu, as it was a touch on the pricey side (£70pp. However, from a technical perspective every dish was absolutely delicious and a real testament to the kitchen team. I also enjoyed – and did pay for, I should add – a Rhubarb & Raspberry Mimosa and a ‘Cocktail of the Month’, which was a Strawberry & Cream Martini made using fresh strawberries and Cornish gin.
What’s the damage: A one night gourmet stay at Kenitsbury Grange will set you back £380 for two people and includes:
- Overnight accommodation in one of their Luxury Suites
- A bottle of chilled Michael Caines Blanc de Blanc champagne in your room
- Six course taster menu – a true showcase of local produce
- Full English Breakfast in the morning
- Late check out at 12pm on your day of departure
Alternatively, a classic room starts from £110/night and a la carte dinner starts from £38 for two courses.
Overall Thoughts: I had a wonderful time during my visit to Kentisbury Grange and I would certainly recommend it to anyone visiting North Devon. With a plethora of great restaurants and stunning countryside walks right on its doorstep (not to mention the Coach House Restaurant onsite) this is certainly a destination for anyone who truly appreciates good food and boutique hotels. The decor is fabulous, the staff are among the best I’ve encountered since I began my blogging journey (shoutout to Johnny and Emma in particular) and the location is quite magical. Give Kentisbury a visit and let me know if you have below – i’d love to hear your thoughts!