There’s heaven and then there’s Sopwell House – personally I can’t tell the difference between the two and if there really is a heaven – this is how I want it to be. A tale of a private hot tub, lots of Champagne, extraordinary patisserie, service with a smile and some mews suits which have completely changed my perspective of a St Albans retreat. I give you – Sopwell House. A magnificent country retreat set to create memories to cherish for a lifetime.
We were staying in one of the hotels beautiful mews suites, which come with their own private just about everything. After settling the car into the private car park, we made our way to reception where all of our troubles were take away. Bags were swept away into our rooms, paperwork quickly filled out and in just 5 minutes later we were already sitting in the cocktail lounge sipping on a white Russian and enjoying an unexpected three course lunch later. After a little hotel exploring we finally got to discover just what these private mews suites had to offer.
Across the way from the main entrance of the hotel lies a gate accessible only by key-card and behind it all is utter seclusion and privacy. Even at its busiest times you’re only sharing the magnificent secluded landscaped gardens with just a handful of suites.
The grounds here really are stunning and comes to no surprise seen as they were designed by RHS Chelsea and Hampton Court Palace Flower Show Gold award winner, Ann-Marie Powell. There’s lots of lush green shrubs with the occasional bold colour catching the corner of your eye. During the evening when it’s all lit up its magical.
We stayed in the Primrose suite which turned out to be my perfect retreat and with just about everything I’d have wanted. The fresh ripe red strawberries, battenburg cake and chilled Champagne waiting on arrival was a lovely touch too.
A modern four-poster bed, a metallic roll top bathtub with roaring fire right next to it and cosy lounge to waste away an afternoon. All the mews suites also come with a good WiFi signal, Sky TV, Nespresso machine, ESPA toiletries, robes, slippers and a fantastic surround sound system. Not to mention a very well stocked mini bar.
The main spectacle was yet to come because our suites private terrace, had its own private hot tub. If you hadn’t already noticed I have a rather dangerous obsession with hot tubs and are always on the hunt for them. Here the tub couldn’t have been more perfect. Small, but just right for two people and heated to just the right temperature. We enjoyed the music creeping out from our room, a bottle of Champagne and the unexpected arrival of some stunning selection of patisseries to be enjoyed by our tub. Quote honestly some of the best oozing centre macaroons you’ll come across and that battenburg cake was something else altogether.
After our hot tub experience we went off to explore the communal gardens and the stunning shared hydrotherapy pool. Champagne arrived and after I laid back I felt like I’d died and gone to heaven. It’s so peaceful and relaxing. For someone like me who really never stops, getting me to stop and relax for a moment is a hard task – but they managed it very well.
I couldn’t help sharing a few snaps of our food too. Some of the more precise and picture perfect offerings were from our lunch that day in The Restaurant and the more rustic plates of food from our dinner. Both dining experiences were very different offerings, which we loved. It meant we got to enjoy a fine dining experience during the afternoon and a boozy and hearty dinner in the evening. My steak was excellent and the cocktails they whisk up are magnificent.
As the sun set and the darkness covered the sky, Sopwell House became an enchanting place. We had such an amazing time during our stay here in the new mews suites and really can’t wait to come back. Just an hour from London – there really is no excuse to not visit. Oh and you may even bump into a celebrity or two, though you didn’t hear that from me.
NB: I was invited to review and my stay was complimentary. All views are as always, my own. My views are not influenced by anyone other than my own palate and slightly poor eyesight.