Six Country, Coastal and City Escapes to Help Beat the January Blues
Planning a trip this winter?
Smack in the middle of the tiny village of Reeth, in glorious Swaledale, The Burgoyne is the perfect base from which to explore the area and has plenty of special touches which will make a stay here memorable. Each of the boutique rooms is named after a local village, and each one is unique. Ivelet has a sumptuous bathroom with freestanding tub; Marrick has a sumptuous four-poster bed and views over the green; and Eskeleth has French doors to the garden and its own patio area. The Burgoyne’s 1783 Bar & Restaurant is a welcoming spot serving up award-winning fine dining and making the most of the wealth of Yorkshire produce found in the surrounding dales – think wood pigeon with spiced parsnip purée, beef short rib with roast garlic mash or stuffed guineafowl breast with buttered cavolo nero. After dinner, relax in the lounge, which is just the right balance of chic and comfy.
On the Green, Reeth, Richmond DL11 6SN
There are more than 20,000 acres of Swinton Estate to explore, and although we’re heading for the hotel, there are self-catering cottages and glamping options on the estate too. This castle and former stately home is a stunning hotel with 32 beautiful rooms and suites, all named after local towns and villages and classified under Dukes, Earls, Barons and Knights. Dukes are the largest in the castle, with a sitting area, vast ensuite and stunning parkland views. All the rooms here are furnished with antiques and family portraits in keeping with the grandeur of the house. The four-acre kitchen garden (the largest hotel kitchen garden in the UK) supplies Samuel’s (the hotel’s fine-dining restaurant) the spa’s Terrace Restaurant and the Bivouac Café. The Country Club and Spa is a later addition to Swinton – this relaxing space has an indoor and outdoor natural pool, thermal retreat, wood-fired hot tub and al fresco spa where you can slip under blankets and sheepskins beside a log-burning stove.
Swinton Estate, Masham HG4 4JZ
01765 680900 swintonestate.com
The Grand Hotel Tynemouth
An iconic sight on the North East coastline, The Grand is Tynemouth’s landmark hotel overlooking the dramatic North Sea coast. The stunning Longsands Beach, famous for its fantastic surfing waters, is just across the road and is the perfect place for a brisk walk after breakfast or for a leisurely evening stroll. There are 46 refined, modern rooms here, all with luxe touches and many with sea views, so you can wake to watch the sun rise over the sands below. The Brasserie serves dinner and afternoon tea from Friday to Sunday, while the grand Victorian Drawing Room offers fantastic views and is open daily from 10am serving light bites (it becomes a residents-only lounge from 6pm, and is the perfect place to while away an evening in comfort). Tynemouth village also has its fair share of small, independent eateries, pubs and shops so is well worth a mooch if you can drag yourself away from the beach, and the Priory on the headland is worth a visit too.
Grand Parade, Tynemouth NE30 4ER
0191 293 6666
Bike & Boot
We don’t mean to be antisocial but without the crowds of tourists, January and February are the perfect time to visit Scarborough for long, blustery beach walks and cosy afternoons spent hiding in the nearest pub. Make one of Bike & Boot’s 65 rooms your base. The Wadobi is their on-site hub for dogs, walkers, bikers and surfers, kitted out with everything from umbrellas and raincoats to electric bikes, secure bike storage, and even an area to wash down the dog after a sandy walk. The Retreat is where you can find hot drinks and cake at tea time, and their Film Club sees three films a day presented for guests for free – just bring some snacks and enjoy. Their super-relaxed bar, restaurant and café (Bareca) serves pizza, pasta, steaks, salads and small plates, but of course, you have all the attractions of the famous seaside town on your doorstep too.
Cliff Bridge Terrace, Scarborough YO11 2HA
This five-star floating hotel is permanently berthed on Edinburgh’s vibrant waterfront, and combines the style and glamour of a super yacht with old-world elegance. The rooms here are all cabin-style, but oozing with elegance – choose a duplex with a spiral staircase for additional living space, and enjoy the unhurried luxury of life onboard. The Art-Deco influenced Lighthouse Restaurant and Bar has floor-to-ceiling windows so you can look out over the water, and serves from breakfast through to dinner (don’t miss their spectacular cocktails). Enjoy a Champagne afternoon tea or book in for dinner and experience a two-AA Rosette menu including dishes such as Eyemouth crab, roe deer loin and corn fed chicken breast. Leith has its own good restaurants should you wish to be on terra firma, and the centre of Edinburgh is just 15 minutes drive away.
Alexandra Dock, Leith, Edinburgh EH6 7DX
0131 357 5000
The Principal York
Despite its size, it’s easy to overlook the Principal Hotel as you sweep past York’s railway station heading for the city centre. Once you stop to look however, you’ll realise it’s a seriously impressive and imposing building, with its roots firmly in the railway age (it opened on this site in 1878, a year after the new station next door, and was originally operated by the railway company itself). These days, the grand late-Victorian architecture is complemented by modern facilities, elegant rooms and a balanced, neutral palette. The best rooms here are the spacious Minster View Suites, but even the standard rooms come with views over the city and plenty of little luxuries. Yorkshire produce is much in evidence on the menu in the airy Refectory Kitchen and Terrace, while the more intimate Chapter House bar serves wines, craft beers and cocktails alongside a bar menu. Staff will even meet you from your train and take your luggage for you so you can head straight into the historic city of York without missing a minute.
Station Road, York YO24 1AA