While there is so much to do in London, an escape to the quiet life of the charming countryside is necessary and completely worth it. You will be enchanted by the quaint villages, the manor houses converted to luxury hotels, and cottages dripping in vines and framed in potted boxwood. Being there was a dream that inspired a new dream- to one day own an English country home and garden. Fingers crossed!
There were other great manor house hotels that I wanted to visit, but there were only so many hours in the day. I included a few of those on this list as well.
Driver: iChauffeur UK
We had a very nice car for about 10 hours at 800 pounds. The driver was great (ask for Rosen), car was immaculate (S Class Mercedes), and we loved our experience.
Day begins: Burford
Incredibly picturesque streets is exactly what you would envision for life among iconic honeystone homes of the Cotswolds. We stopped at Lynwood & Co. for a latte and a surprisingly delicious piece of banana bread warmed with ricotta and drizzled in local honey. It was a perfect first stop.
There wasn’t a lot to shop and did spot several tourists, but loved the quaint residential side streets.
Next Stop: Barnsley House
I called ahead and asked for a garden tour of this lovely manor home, which was transformed into a luxury hotel and spa. It was quiet, understated, and totally peaceful from the second we walked through the door. The fire was crackling as we waited on the pale blush velvet sofa before the head gardener, Jen, took us on a tour.
From the knot garden to the wilderness garden to the vegetable garden, the property was incredibly enchanting. Originally owned by Rosemary Verey, Barnsley House was a true delight and the gardeners work hard to maintain her original vision. One of my favorite takeaways was the local honey that is produced on property.
Next Stop: Stow-on-the-Wold
I’ll be totally honest, I came here just for Amanda Brooks’ shop, Cutter Brooks. I have been following her journey from New York to her Cotswold’s farm for some time now. The town was one of my favorites. The shop was visually stunning in a chic and intimate sort of way. It was stocked with beautiful items for the home and unique fashion finds. I bought: an ornament, a silk scarf hair tie, and a golden pair (like a curry color) of Le Monde Beryl mules. Amanda even came out at one point during our visit. I must say, I was a little star struck.
Last stop: Afternoon tea at Slaughters Manor House
We went to Salughters Manor House to have tea. I must say the food at the tea was some of the best. Served in a pink room, it was very cheerful and airy. That said, the whole inside of this hotel was transformed with a different hue for every room. The decor didn’t lend itself to the property, which is always a little unsettling to me.