A stay at Titchwell is ideal for those who like to get out and about. Walking shoes are a must, by foot is the best way to see everything the area has to offer, including the ‘pick your own’ strawberry farm a short distance away. If you’re planning on going further afield, by car is the best option. At Blakeney, thirty minutes east, it’s possible to set sail on a seal-spotting boat trip. An active holiday wouldnt be the same without a four legged friend, so we were delighted to discover that the hotel allows dogs to stay. Pooches are welcomed with a comfy bed, water bowl and bag of treats provided at a small extra cost of £10 per night.
This family-run boutique hotel first opened in 1988, and unlike many of the chains we’re accustomed to there’s a real personal touch, with genuinely friendly staff and a cosy log fire in the reception giving it a welcoming, homely feel. The design combines original Victorian features with contemporary touches, and bedrooms in the main manor are dressed with mahogany bedside tables, winged arm chairs, fabric-covered bed heads and vibrant soft furnishings, meanwhile the barn rooms reflect the building's rural past.
We checked in to our very spacious double in the herb garden outhouse, with views overlooking Norfolk’s endless countryside. Neutral decor, wooden furniture and floorboards give the place a New England feel and French windows open out onto the lawn where guest can make use of the wicker sun beds. Stand alone baths add a touch of luxury, and fresh flowers and homemade biscuits are thoughtful touches. From our window we were pleased to see the chef picking home grown herbs for the evening’s service.
Food and Drink: Keeping it in the family, head chef and son Eric Snaith heads up a three AA Rosette awarded restaurant in The Conservatory.
Guests can enjoy creatively presented modern European cuisine overlooking the beautiful walled garden. The conversation menu includes eight courses; wine is paired with each dish. The dishes change monthly, but expect the likes of turbot and lobster served with fennel and buttermilk, and Norfolk lamb with mugwort and smoked tomato. For more informal dining, The Eating Rooms offer a hearty menu of steaks, pies and locally sourced Brancaster shellfish. Add a side of beef dripping chips, and you’re guaranteed a meal to warm your cockles. A cute extra is Titchwell’s picnics. The kitchen team will send you off on your day’s travels with sandwiches and sweet treats to keep you full until dinner.
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Price: Rooms start from £95 per night for a double
Address: Titchwell Manor, Titchwell, Nr Brancaster, Norfolk, PE 31 8BB, 01485 210 221, titchwellmanor.com
Radio Times Travel Rating: 9/10 Beautiful setting and a real personal touch, without compromising on luxury. A must stay in Norfolk.