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Hellifield Peel Castle
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Reviewed December 4, 2012

I watched the restoration of this castle on Grand Designs a few years ago and it was my dream to stay at some stage. Well it surpassed all my expectations.

Why would anybody prefer to stay in a hotel if you have the opportunity to stay in a Bed and Breakfast like this truly unique castle. Furthermore, who could ever imagine staying in a really warm castle in the middle of November! The heating is geo thermal so a constant heat permeates through the building 24 hours a day.

I chose the chapel bedroom because I liked the look of the bath. Wow, it was huge - The rolls royce of baths! The view from the room over the fields is amazing. Every minute detail in the castle has been thought through with such care even down to all the goodies left in the bedroom for guests as well as all the shampoos, soaps, candles and fluffy towels in the bathroom. There were even two scrumptious little fairy cakes under a glass hat with tea and coffee making facilities nearby, a fridge with little bottles of wine, chocolates and the list just goes on. I enjoyed every moment of my stay, so much so that I decided not to stray out for dinner. Instead I re-watched the grand designs programme just to remind myself of all the pain that Francis and Karen went through to create this paradise.

I retired early to my four poster bed after a long soak in the massive bath - Such luxury! The curtains were the heaviest I have ever seen (they weren't permitted to use double glazing)

There is a guest sitting room on one of the floors and the breakfast room is on the ground floor. I was fortunate to be able to see the apartment on the top floor. The ultra modern rooms are an amazing contrast to the rest of the house but blend in really well. Need I add that the view from the balcony is fabulous.

Breakfast was delicious.There were lots of cereals and juices as well as cute little jam pots. Oh, I could go on and on!!

I loved everything about this magical stay and I can't wait to go back again!!

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled solo
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3  Thank KilbroganHouse
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 4, 2012

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!

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Alan B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 4, 2012

My husband booked 2 nights as a Birthday suprise and it certainly was. Set in the most beautiful countryside Peel Castle is as magestic as its sourroundings Concealed on the outskirts of the viillage, hidden, like a secret refuge from the turmoil of the life beyond, it oozes peace and tranquility.The views from every window reminds the observer why Peel is so special, rolling hills and endless countryside calm the soul and gladden the heart.
Each room has its own character, we stayed in the Chapel Room with its quaint features and thoughtful touches of luxury, soft towels, homemade chocolates and cakes and even a torch, presumably for late night roaming! The furnishings were an ecclectic mix of antiques and quirky modern art. The bathroom has an enormous bath which was heaven at the end of a 7mile walk and worth the time it took to fill. Lying in the supremly comfortably four poster bed It was so hard to get up for the 9.30 breakfast served in the dinning room with a large open fire and antique tables. Karen's breakfast is all locally sourced,even the eggs had been laid that morning by one of her free roaming hens.
The first night we stayed we visited the Maypole pub 2 miles away for a hearty country supper, warm and friendly and good value. The second night we went further afield to The Devonshire Arms near Bolton Abbey, as recommended by Francis and Karen in their helpful guide. It was food that even Master Chef would be proud, worth it for a special occasion.
Of course walks around Hellifield and the surrounding area are plentiful and varied.On a crisp frosty morning we took the train from Settle to Horton and walked the 6.8 miles back. Good hiking boots are recommended as the ground can be boggy in places. It is certainly up hill and down dales and not recommended for those with walking difficulties,but despite the varied terrain,it is the worth the aching limbs and tired feet for the views alone. Be warned lots of sheep !!!
Leaving Peel was like leaving behind a friend. Karen and Francis make their beautiful home your home for as long as you stay nothing is too much trouble. I would like to thank them both for their warm hospitality and making us feel, for a brief time, like a Lord and Lady in our own castle. I long to return.

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Lizzy2952
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 30, 2012

We had the chance to stay at Hellifield Peel Castle for one night only, the night before our 15th wedding anniversary. We chose to stay in the Attic Apartment as there was the added benefit of being able to cook a meal in the kitchen in the evening, which meant we could both have a glass of champagne and not have to worry about driving or getting a taxi. In the morning we had arranged to have breakfast in the dining room with the other guests.

We followed the directions to Peel Castle and arrived around 3:15pm. We were met by Karen and Francis and got a warm and friendly welcome from them both. Francis offered to help us with our bags but we decided to get them later so he showed us around the castle. As we arrived before some of the other guests we had the chance for a peek into the other rooms and all were beautifully furnished and felt warm and cosy. The wooden staircase is a wonderful feature and we followed this to the top and then through the door to the Attic Apartment. Up a few more stairs and the lounge opened out in front of us and to the right the windows and door onto the balcony and the views across the rolling Yorkshire countryside. Francis gave us a brief tour of the apartment, explaining how to use the hob in the kitchen and showing us where we could find everything we needed.

On the table in the lounge was a plate with homemade cupcakes and a couple of strawberries, which were delicious and most welcome after travelling. Francis made sure we got the ice we had requested and we got our bottle of champagne chilling as we settled ourselves in for a relaxing evening. The attic is different to the rest of the castle as it is furnished in a modern style but it certainly felt comfortable and with the huge window it would be wrong to have a more traditional style there.

As we were just there for one night I didn't try the huge bath but the shower was wonderful and the fluffy towels, bath robe and slippers were great to slip into. We had prepared most of our meal before leaving home so we just had a minimal amount of cooking to do but the kitchen was well equipped and we had no trouble finding the pans and serving dishes we needed. We were lucky enough to have arrived in good weather and so we kept popping out onto the balcony to watch the sun set, the moon rise and the stars come out. In fact even though the temperature was below freezing we still spent quite some time on the balcony stargazing. In warmer weather the balcony would be a great place to enjoy a meal.

The lounge was comfortable and there were 3 sofas so it was easy to find a place to sit for a good view outside or of the tv. The bedroom was a good size, warm and nicely furnished, it has the best bedside lamp I have ever seen! The bed itself was comfortable and warm and we both enjoyed a restful night with the moon shining through the windows. There was lots of space for hanging clothes and a chest of drawers which had a couple of books on top for guests to fill in with tips about places to eat or places of interest in the area.

Breakfast the next morning was delicious. There was a good range of cereals, fruit and drinks available and we both asked for mushroom omelette and tomato for our hot breakfast. I have to say this is the best mushroom omelette I have ever had, well cooked and stuffed to bursting with mushrooms, perfect! Karen made sure we had enough coffee and toast and was attentive and chatty making everyone feel relaxed.

When it came to leave we decided that we will return sometime and try one of the other rooms so that we get to spend the night in a room that has more of a 'castle' feeling. Karen was there to wish us a safe trip home and hubby filled in the visitors book. We had a final wander around outside, enjoying the peace and quiet before returning home.

I can't wait to return.

Room Tip: The Attic Apartment is great if you don't want to go out again later to eat.
  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank EdenRanger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 26, 2012

We really can't recommend this place enough. Karen and Francis have worked extremely hard to ensure everything is just right and they are friendly and very accommodating. We booked two rooms and both were huge with everything you needed including chocolates and wine. Breakfast was delicious. We travelled to Harrogate for tea at Betty's which is just a short drive away. Hellifield Peel Castle lives up to expectation. Go!

Room Tip: The Old Bedroom is particularly recommended. Huge walk in shower.
  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled with family
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Thank redeye488
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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