In July this year we spent a week enjoying a family holiday at Howtown Hotel to celebrate my parents' Golden Wedding Anniversary. Mrs Baldry and her staff could not have been kinder or more helpful if they tried. My brother was recovering from a broken ankle, so had to spend the week wearing a very heavy plaster on his leg. Mrs Baldry noticed he was struggling to keep his leg raised on one of the hotel lounge chairs, so offered the use of a small footstool, which was just the right size and height. At my request, she also arranged for a beautiful flower arrangement to be delivered to the hotel on the day of my parents' actual Anniversary day. I could not have chosen a more appropriate display if I had been at the florists myself. The flower "spray" was ideal for taking home at the end of our holiday.
Visiting Howtown Hotel is like stepping into the past. My mother commented that it reminded her of her childhood in the 1950's when she first visited Martindale with my Grandparents. Everything at the hotel is relaxed and the staff are always helpful and polite. The furniture and decor transport the visitor back to the early part of the 20th Century. At times, I felt I was in the middle of a set for filming a "Miss Marple" film or an episode of "Downtown Abbey." The food at the hotel is very traditional, but cooked to a very high standard.
The only drawback with the hotel is that the single access road approx 3-4 miles long is very narrow and there are not enough "passing places" at times, which did cause us problems a few times when we left the hotel to visit other parts of the Lake District.
Compared to a modern hotel, Howtown is very old-fashioned and is probably not suitable for people who need mobile phone or Internet access for communication or entertainment. However, this "little gem" of a hotel is so unique that it should aim to keep its character and not make too many changes to keep up with the 21st Century!