I arrived on the 15th December, a day ahead of a Family Christmas Get-Together on the 16th. I was greeted warmly by Nickie and shown through the amazing Great Hall and up to my room, number 14. Although it had a limited view, it was a last minute extra night on my part, it was most comfortable and they all bent over backwards to make me feel special.
The breakfast on the 16th was sumptuous and with the best coffee I have had anywhere in years and with even with my very restricted diet, Kumar couldn't do enough for me.
That is when the Family event kicked in and the rest of our group arrived. Because of our numbers we now had exclusive use of Wrea Head Hall, which seemed to take on the ambience of its previous life, that of a Grand Family Private Residence. We all met up in the great hall for delicious mulled wine and roasted chestnuts, warming our backs in front of the log fire and all in front of one of their three fabulous christmas trees; a frightfully grand way to start our magical stay!
After a brisk walk along the seafront, my girlfriend and I returned to room one, yes, the number one super deluxe room in the Hotel. With a huge bay window overlooking the gorgeous front grounds and bathroom window on a second side, with its own amazing views over more of their grounds where I am told deer can often be seen, the room has an air of quiet splendour. The splendid and recently refurbished black tiles bathroom and shower, with both a handset and also rain-head, was everything we could have wanted. The double ended roll top bath was a great surprise as it was on its own tiled floor in a corner of the main bedroom. Then there was the bed! A huge gothic style solid wood bed with its immense wooden canopy was certainly one, more from a film set than a department store, and as it proved to be later on an extremely comfortable one too.
After our soothing bath, suitably suited and booted, we went down the grand stairway for champagne and canapés in the great hall again. I had mentioned my wheat and dairy free diet to the chefs when I checked in, but I did not expect a delicious plate made especially to my dietary requirements to be waiting for me down stairs. This was the start of being looked after immaculately all evening by the Assistant Manager Jack. We were then shown through to the Rose Room, our own personal dining room for the night ahead and laid as if for a royal banquet. The restaurant manager, Len, who was responsible for our magnificent surroundings together with his staff then proceeded to personally serve our magnificent meal. The house wines were first class and the food that was set before us was simply delicious, far exceeding our "hotel food" expectations. We has chosen from both the 1881, hardly a standard menu, which was gourmet, and also the Indulgence menu which was even more scrumptious. At the end of the meal we asked Jack if we could pass on our thanks to the chefs; Andrew, the head chef and Billy his sous chef both came into the dining-room and the room erupted into extremely well justified and spontaneous applause.
With more drinks in the Library and a jolly Christmas sing song at the piano, the evening went on well into the night. Jack was still with us, taking photos on our camera and making sure that we lacked for nothing, and nor did we.
The morning dawned with a beautiful sunrise flooding in through those magnificent windows and then another delicious breakfast, again tweaked for my diet. Then after our fond fairwells to the family and we sadly left Wrea Head Hall to its next lucky residents and occasional diners. The "new owners" were sadly missing from the Hall, as they were on their own Christmas Holidays, so unfortunately we could not pass on our heartfelt thanks to them personally. It was a wonderful Christmas, especially for us, created by the tremendous and caring staff, even though it was 9 days early on the calendar.
Wrea Head Hall is thoroughly recommended.
Go on, treat yourself! Go for room one!
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.