Hollie’s Review of Grantley Hall, Ripon
- 07 April 2020 07 April 2020
What is Grantley Hall and who’s it for?
Grantley Hall has been painstakingly renovated over 4 years, from a dilapidated Palladian mansion, into a stunning luxury Grade II listed hotel in North Yorkshire.
The Grantley Hall estate lies west of the village of Ripon, on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales. It is an easy driving distance from Leeds, Harrogate and York.
The Hotel & Accommodation
The approach to the hotel is in indeed spectacular. We are greeted at the east Lodge by a smartly dressed gentleman in tweed who rings ahead to announce our arrival to concierge. The River Skell nourishes the meadows, lawns and gardens of Grantley Estate and gently meanders along the driveway, accompanying you to the main entrance. Ornate gardens, wild meadows and pheasant laden trees envelope the main house which stands majestically against the sky. An in-room check-in in a pleasant touch and sets the tone for the total indulgent and relaxing wellness break.
The mansion has been beautifully restored with preserved ancient tapestries juxtaposed with bright teal sofas, wooden panelling, modern art and antique chinaware.
The bedrooms are designed in neutral comforting hues, with elegant furniture and modern sculpture. The TV is cleverly concealed behind a painting while the windows cascade light from the gracious manicured lawns beyond. A king-size bed, pillow menu (from billowy down to vegan!) and blankets from local sheep’s’ wool coax me into the deepest night’s sleep I’ve had in weeks.
The luxurious marble bathroom features a huge bathtub, walk-in shower (which doubles as a steam-room!) and even a bathrobe menu.
The Three Graces Spa is pure luxury, making this a perfect destination for a luxury spa holiday. Roman-eques pillars and archways entomb the indoor swimming pool which is guarded by marble statues, relaxation beds and verdant palm fronds. As I am pregnant, I choose a long mother-to-be treatment which included a divine massage, facial and some sound healing. The spa treatment rooms are laden with crystals, copper mugs, and singing bowls which cocoon you into the depths of tranquillity.
The products Ila are used in the spa, which are very natural, organic and indeed luxurious. The hotel even has their own signature range of products which Ila created for them specially.
The high-tech gym features every piece of equipment one could possibly need plus unique highlights such as a cryotherapy chamber, which is popular for sports injuries, an underwater treadmill and a high-altitude spin room. There are yoga classes wither on the lawn or in the studio which are a great way to start the day before an indulgent breakfast.
There is a choice of restaurants in the evenings, 3 to be exact. We decided on the Pan Asian restaurant EightyEight, which features electric art, bright teal velvet furnishings and myriads of glass panels, a complete change from the elegance of the main hotel.
I was presented with an alcohol-free cocktail creation tasting of local herbs, elderflower and rose accents which tasted divine, as we reclined in a table cocoon to the background of a local acoustic singer. The whole meal and menu experience was delightful – tastes, flavours and presentations of the highest quality and imagination. The menu choice gives you fine dining ‘street food’ or splash out on oysters or sea trout.
The desert was especially fantastic. My partner decided upon the chocolate option, and upon seeing his, I promptly ordered one for myself, deciding I was not too full after all!
Breakfast is served wither in two adjoined light rooms overlooking the manicured lawns or in a cosier setting of the lounge, flanked by wooden panelling and deep red sofas. The breakfast menu is extensive with local highlights such as smoked kippers and the ubiquitous Yorkshire toast aplenty!
All the staff at Grantley Hall are warm, personable and highly trained. The spa therapist who gave me my treatments was exceptional and delivered one of the best massages I have had. The service is faultless; from the team of smiling concierge who welcome you from your car, to the knowledgeable waiting staff and professional fitness instructors. You are in expert hands here.
The Scenery & Surroundings
The immediate surroundings of the hotel boast 30 acres of parkland and woodland, so plenty of room to explore. Sunshine basks the oriental Japanese gardens designed in 1910 by previous aristocratic owners, shafts of sun rays slicing through the bright Acer trees above two ponds framed by a wooden bridge.
Pretty Yorkshire villages with old town squares, mystical cathedrals and beckon and the Yorkshire Dales give hours of walking opportunities.
- The post treatment rooms filled with healing crystals, a fresh fruit platter and billowing massage beds overlooking the gardens to extend the bliss feelings
- The live music from the Pan-Asian restaurant
- The indoor-outdoor swimming pools under the grandness of the Roman ceiling
My Summary & Verdict
As soon as we drove up the sweeping driveway flanked by the gently ebbing river, I knew we were in for a treat. The whole experience was pure heaven, nothing was too much trouble and the attention to detail was exceptional.
This is the UK spa destination for romance, a special celebration or a well-deserved deeply pampering wellness break for friends or family.
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