Something For The Weekend: Gliffaes Country House Hotel
"Not all those who wander are lost" - JRR Tolkien
Life may be full of endless opportunities, mind-blowing experiences and breath-taking adventures but it also comes with its stresses. As much as we strive to live the 'perfect' life, it's not always plain sailing. Above many other things, life can be demanding, unsettling and complicated so when it begins to take its toll on our health and wellbeing, it's nice to know that we're able to put the world on hold, escape to a place of peace and clear our minds for a day or two.
With the skies at our disposal, it's often more convenient to hop on a plane to somewhere far far removed from our normal environment - with guaranteed sunshine, idyllic landscapes and a slower pace of life - that we forget that there are so many beautiful places here in the UK that can offer the same respite as a faraway fairytale.
Recently, my boyfriend and I decided that we'd leave the hustle and bustle of London and venture to Wales for a weekend in the countryside. After a 3hr 30min journey, we arrived at Gliffaes Country House Hotel, which was to be our home from home for the night.
Located in the heart of the Brecon Beacons and the Black mountains, Gliffaes Country House Hotel is a family-owned Victorian manor house set in 33 acres of gorgeous grounds, overlooking the River Usk. As well as being the idea spot for fishing, Gliffaes offers guests the opportunity to enjoy the beauty and tranquillity of the hotel in a variety of ways. Whether its hiking, reading, eating or sleeping, Gliffaes Country House Hotel is the perfect place to sit back, relax and truly feel at home.
With 23 individually decorated bedrooms, each room is designed for maximum comfort and relaxation: a large king-sized bed, a spacious bathroom, bathrobes, a stunning view, space to sit and reflect and Wi-Fi. Beautifully furnished in traditional country style, Gliffaes remains true to its charming heritage while providing guests with a sprinkling of modern amenities that make for a comfortable stay.
After enjoying the comforts of our room and watching the sun set behind the hills, we headed down to the bar for a pre-dinner cocktail in front of the log fire. With a small but perfectly formed cocktail menu, beers on tap and an extensive wine list, there's a drink for everyone at Gliffaes and reason to enjoy the warmth and familiarity of the sitting room before dining in the main restaurant.
Whether you're a guest of the hotel or in the area looking for somewhere to dine, the restaurant at Gliffaes offers an exquisite fine dining experience with a menu composed entirely of seasonal and locally sourced ingredients.
The dining room is furnished in theme with the rest of the house and establishes a considerably formal ambience with an intimate setting, neatly pressed tablecloths, immaculately presented waiters and minimal noise.
Each course was perfectly presented with interesting composition and big flavours. It is clear that the chefs at Gliffaes have an innate passion for food, which makes dining even more pleasant. My favourite course was the Trio of Salmon starter, which consisted of a salmon and cream cheese roulade, smoked salmon and salmon terrine. Fresh, light and flavoursome, the starter set the standard for an exceptional three course meal and a truly pleasant evening.
|Starter: Trio of Salmon|
|Main: Curried Rainbow Trout|
|Dessert: Chocolate Fondant|
The overal experience at Gliffaes Country House Hotel is wonderful. The staff are incredibly efficient and friendly, the guests are considerate and each room offers genuine comfort. It may not be the most glamorous hotel, tt may not be packed out every night and it may be in the middle of nowhere but it definitely feels like home.
If you're looking for a pastoral countryside hotel peppered with luxurious elements and a passion for good food, Gliffaes Country House Hotel is the perfect choice. The location, the hotel and the dining experience combine to leave you relaxed, well-rested and ready to take on the world again.
For more information on room rates and availability, visit www.gliffaeshotel.com