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“Comfortable relaxing retreat less than 2 hours from London” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Lainston House Hotel

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Lainston House Hotel
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Woodman Lane | Sparsholt, Winchester S021 2LT, England   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #2 of 13 Hotels in Winchester
London, United Kingdom
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Comfortable relaxing retreat less than 2 hours from London”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2013 via mobile

After two weeks of builders invading our home we treated ourselves to a weekend luxury break at Lainston House Hotel near Winchester. Found it in the net by typing in luxury hotels within 2 hours of London Got a great deal too including dinner which was excellent. Room was spacious and equipped with everything we needed and the extensive well kept grounds provided for long walks after lunch and breakfast . Above all service was amazing. We can't wait to go again.

  • Stayed February 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ALopez-Bustos, Manager at Lainston House Hotel, responded to this review, March 18, 2013
Dear Anthony E,
Thank you for the great review - I hope all the stress from your building works is now long forgotten and you are enjoying the results.

I am delighted to read that you fun the team to be amazing and that the room and the grounds were just what was needed for a bit of R&R.

I am told that we are just 18 minutes away from Battersea by helicopter (althougth I've never had the chance to do that journey!) and a train from Waterloo will get you to Winchester in less than 1hr. Indeed a very short while to make anyone forget the busy streets of London and get submerged in the tranquil surroundings of Lainston House.

Once again, thank you for the fantastic feedback. We look forward to welcoming you back in the not too distant future - We have some amazing deals for Easter already live in our website!

Antonio Lopez-Bustos
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560 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (118)
Date | Rating
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English first
San Francisco
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 14, 2013

This is a posh hotel minutes away from downtown Winchester. Nice grounds, very spacious room - which was recently built but beautifully decorated to a very high standard. The bathroom window had stained glass and stone spheres adorned the marble surround of the bath which was a bit quirky. The shower area has side jets as well as a waterfall shower. I would have appreciated a way to reduce the water flowing as it was actually difficult to wash hair etc.
The grounds are lovely and the hotel is placed on the crest of a hill so there is light in all directions. We ate supper in the bar at a cosy table which was a relaxed way to enjoy some excellent food without the formality of the dining room. Would definitely recommend it and hope to be back again some time. It was a fair distance to the reception and restaurant as the tasteful hotel extension has added one wing after another - I wonder if there's a shorter route. There is a stuffed owl to put outside your room if you don't want to be disturbed.

Room Tip: If you are not that mobile, ask for a room close to the main reception.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ALopez-Bustos, Manager at Lainston House Hotel, responded to this review, March 14, 2013
Dear MissJudith,
Thank you for taking the time to post your great review of Lainston House. We are delighted to see that you enjoyed one of our 'Fishing' wing Junior Suites. They do really have a very romantic and comfy feel to them.

The grounds are truly coming to life with the start of the spring - The Kitchen garden will be full of lovely produce in a few weeks. It is one of my favourite places within the grounds.

I am delighted to read that you enjoyed a light supper in the Cedar bar. The new menu, including some shared platters, is getting fantastic feedback and it is a great alternative to fine dining in the Avenue Restaurant, especially for those guests enjoying a longer break.

Once again, thank you for your endorsement. We look forward to welcoming you back very soon. There are some fantastic promotions for the next couple of weeks available by calling our reservations line at the hotel.

Kind regards
Antonio Lopez-Bustos
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Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 6, 2013

A beautiful hotel in the English countryside, enjoyed it but felt like we had to get the kids to be quiet, more of a romantic escape than family relax! Food lovely, service good, didn't feel like I could just meander felt like I should be on best behaviour... Great location for Winchester & surrounding Hampshire countryside. Adult chill out!

  • Stayed August 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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ALopez-Bustos, Manager at Lainston House Hotel, responded to this review, March 8, 2013
Dear EJD1971,
Thank you for your review of Lainston House - It is great to see that you enjoyed your stay with the family and that Lainston was your base to explore the wonderful Hampshire countryside and Historic Winchester. There are some great activities for children of all ages, both at the Hotel and in the vicinity.
Within Lainston you can enjoy our very own Falconry center, play with the south lawn giant garden games, go for a ride in our byclicles (including a tadem for two), a game of tennis or croquet and lots of grounds to run around. For rainy days there is also a chest in the Drawing room full of toys and board games.
Nearby I would recommend Marwell Zoo, the Intech Science centre, Paultons Park (home of Peppa PIg!). Stonehenge, the New Forrest, the South Downs and some great walks at the nearby river test are great for teenagers with a love for the outdoors.
All this information is available from reception and the team is always happy to assist with any particular requirements. We are also improving our libray of children DVDs so the little ones can be entertained when in the privacy of your rooms.
I agree with you, there are areas, like the Cedar bar, more suitable for Adults chill out, which is why Lainston can be that perfect place for families to enjoy time together during the day and relax after a busy day when the kids are in bed.
I look forward to having the opportunity to welcome the whole family back soon - Easter is around the corner and the Easter bunny will be leaving plenty of chocolate eggs around!!
Antonio Lopez-Bustos
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England
Top Contributor
127 reviews 127 reviews
48 hotel reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
162 helpful votes 162 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 3, 2013

We booked here to celebrate a birthday, so wanted somewhere pretty special. Well this place isn't just pretty special, it is amazing. From the moment you turn into the long drive to the hotel, travelling up alongside its signature tree-lined avenue, you feel a real sense of occasion.

It is like arriving at your own personal country residence. This sensation is maintained by the staff, all of whom treat you like you are the only person in the hotel and are - in effect - your personal housekeeping staff for the duration of your stay. A good example would be the wonderfully charming mature lady who opened the front door for us and before we knew it was carrying our luggage into reception for us; it was great to see a hotel employing more mature staff and being met by a lovely, polite silver-haired lady with a welcoming smile was like being met by your mum the first time you came back home from university or travelling. A very subtle and clever touch.

The staff were never obsequious or overbearing, just very professional, efficient and diligent. All were wearing variations of a staff uniform that was spot on for the feel of the place and gave extra impact to the customer service delivery.

We had booked a pet-friendly room as we had brought the dog and had been told that it was one of the outbuildings but had an outside door. We were expecting something in a far flung corner but upon being shown to the room (not "here's your key now go find it") our jaws collectively hit the floor. The most spacious of rooms, beautifully decorated and appointed, with a very high ceiling allowing the most wonderful near full length windows. In spite of it being freezing outside and with the large original windows, the room was lovely and warm throughout our stay.

Under one of the windows was a luxury dog bed, empty water bowl and a dog treat. That was the most fantastic surprise, as we had brought all of those ourselves thinking that a pet-friendly room was just that, i.e. nothing more than the room. The consideration that the hotel had gone to in laying this on was superb. Of course the dog was pleased as punch, clearly recognising the attention he had been paid and immediately laid down on the bed and ate his treat. Upon closer inspection it had some kind of memory foam base and as a consequence by the end of the trip, he was completely in love with it and I think we will have to get him one as his existing bed is now just not up to scratch (in his dog eyes anyway). There were also a couple of scoop bags, partly in case you hadn't brought any and partly - again subtle yet clever - as a reminder to clear up after you.

The outside door opened out onto the gardens and woods and was perfect for going in & out with the dog without having to go through the room and back to the main door. There was a large stone step that was ideal for putting his dog towel on, to clean his paws as well as leaving wellies outside the door.

The bathroom in the room deserves special mention, as the uploading pics may not show it fully. Firstly, it was a great size. Next it had dual sinks, a toilet with the old style antique high level cistern with the long chain above your head, bidet, jacuzzi bath with built-in TV in the wall end mirror and a walk-in shower with rain head and side rain bars. If that wasn't enough it had underfloor heating.

The room itself was well-equipped with a large flatscreen TV with Freeview & access to Sky Sports, a good sized work desk, two very comfortable high back armchairs and a very funky Service en Chambre box. This is tea & coffee making with a difference; a good selection of teas and very, very good cafetiere coffee (it comes in what looks like a massive teabag that you make in the cafetiere provided, but it doesn't half taste like proper coffee), all within a beautifully crafted box. With a note on top saying that if you want fresh milk, just ask reception.

The most incredible part of all this was that the room - South Loggia - was 'just' a deluxe room. We've stayed in 'suites' in iconic London hotels that have been smaller and not as pleasant. Even if we had been without the dog, this would have been more than beyond our expectations.

Talking of the dog, upon check-in we asked where we could take him within the hotel, expecting to be told the usual health&safety "not here, not there, you can't go there...". Instead it was simply "apart from the dining room, he can go everywhere". This was wonderful as we could sit in the bar or afternoon tea room with him, which we did, whilst sampling the gin then cocktail selection with a very, very fine afternoon snack. Treating guests with pets like adults makes sense; people don't bring their dog to somewhere like Lainston House if they think he/she would be a problem so on that basis, allow guests to enjoy the facilities that they have paid for.

Of course, the dog behaved brilliantly, loving the attention paid to him by almost every guest that wandered past and stroked him, much to his enjoyment. Several guests commented that they didn't realise pets were not only tolerated but actively welcomed and so I hope we've served as pet ambassadors and encouraged other dog owners to come away with their pet rather than leave them with a dogsitter or in kennels for the weekend.

The other reason it's important is because it is an excuse to go for long walks in the hotel's grounds. The hotel has the most beautiful tree-lined avenue that must stretch for a mile or so into the distance. It was snowing when we arrived but that didn't stop us from taking the dog and going for a walk all the way to the end and back. In such breathtaking surroundings, it is a fantastic experience, especially when you know that the Cedar Bar with its real fire and very, very comprehensive drinks selection is awaiting upon your return.

After the walk we spent a few hours in the bar, enjoying this selection of drinks of which Elder Collins is well worth a try for a long cocktail. The late lunch sandwiches - roast beef & horseradish and tomato & mozzarella & basil - were exceptional, with very high quality, local ingredients. Local produce is very high on the agenda of the dining experience here (I'm fairly sure they even breed their own pigs) and I've reviewed the restaurant separately as it warrants it.

There was fast, free wifi available in the room and throughout the hotel; more than sufficient to stream the rugby that was on in HD on our tablet in the bar.

After a very good night's sleep in the supremely comfortable bed, we had another walk down the avenue and back, made all the more enjoyable by the anticipation of breakfast. Breakfast was excellent; a good choice of cereals, yoghurts etc. supported by plenty of freshly baked bread and pastries and very good coffee. We both had the cooked breakfast that was amazing; scrambled eggs made with cream unless I'm much mistaken (decadent or what?!) as well as tasty streaky bacon and pork sausage; the benefits of having your own pigs and having such a short supply chain over which you have full control and provenance.

We packed our bags and checked-out with the combination of relaxed pleasure from a wonderful stay and disappointment at having to leave.

We had booked one of their dinner, bed & breakfast packages at £260 for one night. Allowing for the breakfast and dinner allowance (which was £45 each), that made the room only cost around £128. Blimey. We wouldn't have baulked at paying two or three times that amount for just the room. All in, with an afternoon spent in the bar (many G&Ts, cocktails and lunch), pre and post-dinner dinner drinks and dinner, the bill was £450.

For the overall guest experience - that includes the quality of the room, the facilities, the staff and the dining - this has to represent great value for money.

Short of buying your own country house, Lainston House provides the next best thing: a luxurious and memorable guest experience that combines exceptional customer service with high quality facilities.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ALopez-Bustos, Manager at Lainston House Hotel, responded to this review, March 4, 2013
Dear Propaganda_Machine
Thank you for the outstanding and detailed review of Lainston House! Perfect reading for a Monday morning. We are delighted to read that you felt at home and that we were able to look after all of you, including the four legged member of the family - Let me know if you are in need one of our dog beds. I will be happy to forward the details of our supplier, they are almost as comfortable as the human ones.

Great to see you took some pictures, thank you for sharing them. I look forward to welcome you back in the not too distant future.
Antonio Lopez-Bustos
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Farnham, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 25, 2013

My wife and i stayed here a few weeks ago and we were completely blown away with the hotel.

On arrival we were upgraded to a junior suite which was lovely, we also had dinner in the restaurant on the first night of our stay and the food was excellant, surely a Michelin star will be awarded soon.

Cannot wait to return

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ALopez-Bustos, Manager at Lainston House Hotel, responded to this review, February 26, 2013
Dear ChrisR527,
Thank you for your great review of Lainston House. We are delighted to read that you enjoyed the room (our Junior Suites have a real wow factor!) and dinner in the Avenue Restaurant. It would be great to receive a Michelin star, as you suggest - It is really rewarding to read comments like yours on Phil Yeomans food and the team's service.

I look forward to your return visit in the not too distant future.

Antonio Lopez-Bustos
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Chandler's Ford
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 18, 2013

We used the Lazy weekend offer. The reception was warm and welcoming. The staff could not do enough to help. There was a thorough introduction to the room and layout of the hotel, and we had a lovely stroll around the grounds, which are expansive and well laid out.

In the evening we had dinner in the restaurant. The choice was good, and the food well-cooked and excellently presented. Although somewhat nouveau cuisine, there was plenty to fill even the biggest appetites! The between course amuse-bouches were particularly good.

The bed and bedroom were comfortable, with a super view. We had a second floor deluxe room. The bathroom was surprisingly spacious and the room was very warm for February.
In the morning breakfast was served with the same high standards of service. Well cooked and locally sourced.

All in all we had an excellent stay and a wonderful Sunday. We would be delighted to go again, and are planning to do so soon.

Room Tip: Rooms overlooking the park are best.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ALopez-Bustos, Manager at Lainston House Hotel, responded to this review, February 19, 2013
Dear Anindo B,
Thanks for such a wonderful review of Lainston House - Great to hear that you enjoyed the Lazy Lainston and that the team were on their usual form and were able to assist.

We are delighted to hear that you enjoyed the food (and drink!), the accommodation and the grounds - Just when spring is about to bloom, my favourite time of the year to walk around the Estate and follow the bluebell path towards the Avenue full with daffodails.

We look forward to seeing you back soon for more R&R.
Antonio Lopez-Bustos
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London, England, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 18, 2013

My husband and I just spent the weekend at Lainston House Hotel. We had a wonderful time. The dinner in the Avenue was excellent, with good food and great service. We got to meet Billy the Falconer and his birds of prey and that was a highlight of the weekend. The service from start to finish couldn't have been better and I loved having a Nespresso machine in the bedroom! I would thoroughly recommend this hotel to anyone thinking of staying there.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ALopez-Bustos, Manager at Lainston House Hotel, responded to this review, February 19, 2013
Dear Elaine A,
Thank you for taking the time to post your review of Lainston House. I am really pleased to read that you had the opportunity to meet Billy and the birds - a very unique experience indeed.

It is great to hear that you appreciated the Nespresso machine in your Exclusive Junior Suite. This is one of the many added benefits of this room category. We feel reallly honoured with your comments about the service, the bedroom and the food at the Avenue Restaurant. Thank you for your endorsement.

I look forward to welcoming you back soon.
Antonio Lopez-Bustos
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Lainston House Hotel

Address: Woodman Lane | Sparsholt, Winchester S021 2LT, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Hampshire > Winchester
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Romantic Hotel in Winchester
#2 Luxury Hotel in Winchester
#3 Business Hotel in Winchester
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Lainston House Hotel 5*
Number of rooms: 50
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Drive through the gates of Lainston House, up the winding drive, you will enter a world where historic charm and contemporary elegance blend seamlessly. This charming 17th Century country house is a luxurious hotel, encapsulated in 63 acres of Hampshire parkland. A peaceful drawing room, sumptuous individually designed bedrooms and food created with passion. Minutes away from the historic city of Winchester and only a short drive from Salisbury, Stonehenge and the New Forest. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Lainston Hotel Winchester

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