I booked for my partner and I to stay for 3 nights (Thu to Sun) for a 40th birthday treat. Like most guests (I suspect) we first saw Peel Castle on Grand Designs and we were so pleased to find out that Karen and Francis were now operating it as a B&B, as it gave us an opportunity to share in the sheer wonder of this property.
So, where to begin....
Location: Peel Castle is situated on the edge of the small village of Hellifield, down a long, treel lined drive. It is easy to find and I would describe it as secluded but not isolated. The views are simply stunning.
The Hosts: Karen and Francis are simply delightful people. It is like going to stay with your friends, rather than in a B&B. They are more than happy to chat, answer questions (that they have no doubt been asked dozens of times before), offer advice on what to see locally, ask how your day has been or just pass the time of day. Nothing is too much trouble and the little touches they provide make the world of difference, such as being around to have a chat when you come back from a day out.
The Castle: We stayed in the Hamerton Room, which boasted a large 4 poster bed, which was extremely comfortable. The views from the room were amazing and on the third day I found myself getting up early and drawing the curtains, and then going back to bed; simply so that I could watch the sun rise! The room is dressed with lovely old furniture, with tapestries on the wall. Linen, duvets, towels, dressing gowns and the toiletries provided were all of very good quality. We had a large shower room attached, with a walk in shower that was lovely. I have never stayed in a room that was so well equipped though. There were the usual tea making facilities, with about 7 different kinds of tea and and coffee to choose from, fresh milk in the fridge along with sparkling and still spring water and white and rose wine. Red wine was on the dresser, along with a bottle opener and glasses. In the dresser was a hairdryer, hot water bottle and a torch (just in case!). There was also a box of hand made chocolates on the bed when we arrived, to compliment the bowl of sweets also in our room. In addition to this, every day were were left two large slices of homemade shortbread and fresh fruit. I am honestly surprised we ever left the room!
You also have the use of a large living room on the first floor, with comfy sofas and a log burner along with all the other guests.
Breakfast: This is served at sensible 'around 9ish, good for you?' time and everything was of a very high standard. There were cereals, home made granola, fresh fruit salad, yoghurts, apple juice, orange juice, grapefruit juice, mango smoothie as well as a cooked breakfast; all served in a lovely dining room with an open fire going and with views over the countryside and the local chickens wandering by. The cooked breakfasts were very nice and cooked to order. The sausages were lovely, and produced locally...in fact, at the end of the drive. The black pudding was from the local butcher and was some of the best I have ever tasted.The usual tea, coffee and toast was also there in abundance.
What made it even better though, were the little acts of thoughtfulness that went the extra mile. My partner is a vegetarian and so Karen ensured that there were also ample veggie sausages available, but also got some halloumi cheese just in case my partner wanted a change one day.
Conclusion: Peel Castle stands proudly, head and shoulders, above anywhere I have ever stayed. I enjoyed my stay so much that I decided before I left that I want to return. I travel around a lot and generally book a cheap hotel, like a Travelodge, to use as a base and somewhere just to sleep at night. Our visit to Peel Castle wasn't like that, as we found ourselves returning early, just so we could enjoy the building and its surroundings. On the long drive home, I was thinking how I could justify to myself paying 3 times as much as I usually would on a 3 day stay. The answer came to me quite quickly. You stay in a Travelodge because you HAVE to be there, but you stay in a place like Peel Castle because you WANT to be there...and trust me, you want to stay at Peel Castle!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Hellifield Peel Castle restored from ruin to Castle and featured on Grand Designs in 2007. Four bedrooms with antique four poster beds are available for Bed & Breakfast and the "Attic Apartment" can be B&B or on a self-catering basis. ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Hellifield Peel Castle Hotel Hellifield
- Hellifield Peel Castle Yorkshire