I’ll begin this review by saying that we have stayed at the Highfield on five occasions so you can reasonably infer that we think it’s an excellent hotel. It has much to recommend it not least of which is it’s location on The Heads in Keswick overlooking Hope Park and with amazing views across Derwentwater towards the Borrowdale fells and eating breakfast with that view outside the window is priceless. This time we were in Room 5 and on previous visits we have stayed in rooms 15, 16 and 17; those at the front of the house are preferable with my favourite being room 16 which is decorated in a boutique style with a small balcony on which you can sit with a nice glass of wine and take in the views. The first time we stayed on a B&B basis but since then we have always included dinner in the award-winning restaurant, which is amazing. You book your time in advance and whilst you consider what to order you are presented with chef’s canapés. To begin with we were served freshly made and still-warm bread rolls, two each of cinnamon & raisin and pesto flavoured. To start my wife had the pan-fried scallops and black pudding with smoked pancetta while I had the chicken liver parfait on Rosemary brioche with apple and cinnamon chutney, a wonderfully rich mixture of tastes and textures. For the main course we had the Fillet of Beef, which is probably the best steak I have ever tasted and well worth the £4.50 supplement. There is an excellent wine list offering bottles from a very reasonable price of less than £20 to more expensive wines if you want to push the boat out a little. The breakfast menu is equally impressive and as well as the ubiquitous full Cumbrian it has a range of alternatives as well as cereal, fruit, yoghurt and copious amounts of toast and coffee or tea. Another valuable asset is the staff who are always cheerful and can’t do enough for you particularly Nick the manager. The hotel is a couple of minutes’ walk from both the lake and the town centre and has a roomy car park to the rear which is really important because on-street parking is difficult to find. The icing on the cake was that our booking attracted the special offer rate of only £70 per night rather than the regular rate for our room of £105 per night. This will definitely not be our last time at the Highfield.
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