We had a great weekend at the Grove - we booked treatments and dinners in advance which apparently you have to as there are day guests visiting the hotel for the weekend. It was nice to know we would have somewhere to eat dinner and while I understand the necessity of booking spa treatments in advance, it did very much take the spontaneity from our day activities (but we have to be back at the spa in 35 mins! We have to be at the restaurant in an hour..) I am a hotel guest - i thought you might have kept a table or two for us. There are lots of facilities, we especially loved the walled garden. A few niggles - our key cards to enter the garden never worked and we had to get the cards replaced once a day. We wanted to play tennis - the pro on the court next to us made it very clear which balls we were allowed to use and which ones not ("the wilson ones are mine!!") - it might have just been a hot day.. and it did take a few attempts to order a soda and lime at the pool but hey, the sun was out and it was summer.
The dinners were lovely - we tried both the fine dining option and the stables which we prefered. Pascuale was very helpful during our breakfast - much nicer option than the glasshouse buffett.
It was also remarkable how it was first absolutely impossible to order a negroni as an aperitif although the menu invited us to ask for what the bar could do - after 15 mins and an intervention of one of the more senior staff we did get the drink and while it was excellent, it did make us wonder how it went from impossible to a great cocktail.
The real joy of this hotel aside from the stunning garden and golf course is the Sequoia Spa. Our treatments were amazing and truly relaxing - go and spend time in the vitality pool....in fact I was so impressed by the Spa that I wanted to treat my pregnant friend to the mother to be treatment that my therapist who was amazing was recommending. My friend was obviously very happy when I told her about my amazing weekend and was very much looking forward to coming.
I then tried to make a booking over the telephone. I wasnt exactly sure which treatment to go for and tried to ask the lady on the booking hotline. Unfortunately she seemed to be in a rush. So much as when I told her that I hadnt necessarily planned to stay over (I didnt get to say that I probably would have if that was required) she more or less said, well we dont offer day passes for the spa on the weekend if you are not staying over. Sorry cant help you Goodbye - which left me pretty stunned on the phone. I didnt find out what other options there would have been and now I never will. Given I had spent over 1200 GBP for this weekend without even going mad on treatments and activities and I was trying to be a loyal guest and to come back it would have been nice if I had been helped rather than hung up on. Its a great hotel but the service at this end really lacked any understanding of what I have experienced in other Leading Hotels of the World.