We enjoyed an early Valentines at Brooks Country House Hotel, in Herefordshire, the gateway to the Wye Valley.
The current house, also known as Pengethley Manor, was built in 1818 by the Symonds Family on the site of a former Tudor estate, which was owned by Sir John Brydges, Lieutenant of the Tower of London. The original house was largely destroyed in a fire in 1818, except the wood panelling now used in the hotel’s reception hall.
The house stood at the centre of a 100-acre estate and for 360 years belonged to the Powell Symonds family, until the death of Caroline Symonds in 1947, when it turned into a hotel. Pengethley Park is now owned by the National Trust. And since it became a hotel, it’s seen a host of famous guests – Sir David Attenborough for starts.
On arrival we were greeted with a bottle of bubbly on ice, strawberries and that classic Valentine red rose. Brook’s are currently doing a valentines offer (£130 per night for two sharing) with a three course dinner with your stay and for a super cosy experience, try one of their converted horseboxes.
Here’s what we had for dinner. To start mushroom and Gruyère crepes; mains beef bourguignon and French onion tart; and for dessert chocolate and salted caramel tart and poached pear with vanilla pannacotta. If we’d had more time, we’d have definitely had a dip in the wood-fired tub.
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Our stay was complimentary and thanks to the team at Brooks for looking after us.