This was our second stay at Ickworth and it seems to have been a little spruced up since last time.
The best thing about Ickworth is that it is genuinely very child-friendly, most notably demonstrated by their breezy lack of concern about two separate 'accidents' by our recently potty trained two year old. (One on an expensive-looking chair at reception, the other on a huge rug in a lounge room.)
The early evening children's tea sitting at 5pm is good, enabling us to get our kids to bed before we then had an adults' dinner (using the baby listening service).
Although the National Trust house in the other wing of the building was not open, its cafe was open for lunch which is a good (and cheaper) alternative to eating in the hotel.
One very minor criticism of our room (Grand Tour) is that the door is very heavy and difficult to open, yet the ridged metal door handle is small and you have to grip it very firmly - which is surprisingly painful! I imagine that might be difficult for those with grip problems. Also for those with mobility problems (as was one of our party staying in a different room), the shower is in the bathtub and the sides of the bath are very high, which makes getting in and out difficult.
Another criticism of Grand Tour is that its windows are draughty and while closing the thick curtains helps to block this, it also blocks the radiator grilles that sit beneath the windows. (Whereas in the bathroom the only radiator is the heated towel rail, and the draughts are really quite noticeable.) Indeed one of the bedroom radiators wasn't working during our stay. When we called reception we were directed by the maintenance guy to use a free-standing electric heater which, while effective, felt slightly hazardous with a toddler roaming free in the room.
Overall, though, we loved our stay at Ickworth and the Grand Tour is a 'wow' room.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The East Wing at Ickworth was home to the Hervey family before it passed to the National Trust. The surroundings are as grand as ever but the idea that “children should be seen but not heard” has gone right out of the hundred or more windows. Where else can you go that offers luxurious surroundings, outstanding facilities, exquisite cuisine and family friendly activities? Ickworth is unique. It's also one of the finest luxury family hotels in the UK.we have recently added a Cinema room to our facilities and show children's films every day. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Ickworth Hotel Horringer
- The Ickworth Hotel Horringer, UK - Bury St. Edmunds