Hotel Review: Great Fosters

What

A grand Tudor country house hotel near Windsor with impressive Royal connections



The History


Dating back to the 16th century, the hotel was built as a hunting lodge for Henry VIII

Sleep


Either in the main house, the coach house or the cloisters. The main house has the most characterful rooms – the historic rooms feature four poster beds, historic panelling or incredible tapestries

Eat

Smart – The Tudor room is an intimate room with just 24 covers decorated with a 17th century tapestry – it is here you find fine dining and the tasting menu. Food is well balanced on the whole- seared tuna was delicate and delicious, although some of the puddings tried a little too hard.

Casual – The Estate Grill has a contemporary menu featuring modern takes on well-sourced British produce

Tea – Afternoon tea was oversubscribed when we were there, but looked impressive. Tea can also be taken outside on the terrace or in the Estate Grill with crumpets or teacakes which is a welcome lighter option.

Outside
The swimming pool is heated and still has its original (now listed) bathing huts and the small gardens are pretty.

Little details


* The history of the building is palpable and it’s clearly been well looked-after. The hotel is probably suited more to cosy winter weekends because of the period it was built, with its wood panelling and period fireplaces

* The gardens are delightful: the knot garden and Japanese bridge in particular are charming, and the moat contains fish. There are lots of little private areas for people to sit without getting in each others’ way

* How a country house hotel deals with weddings is crucial: Great Fosters have cleverly made sure that wedding parties are happily catered for, while guests enjoying a weekend away don’t feel at all put out – the twain don’t meet

* Little treats which come unbidden with teas and coffees are a nice touch

Local attractions


Windsor Great Park  
Hampton Court Palace



Good for


Romantic weekends
Family gatherings and weddings

Not so good for


Party animals

Quirky fact


Great Fosters took up the art of beekeeping in April 2011 with three ‘cottage garden’ hives and three small colonies of bees located in woodland beside the Lime Avenue.

Prices


Rooms in the Coach House from £205 a night with breakfast

Find out more at www.greatfosters.co.uk

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