Stay The Night: Luton Hoo Hotel, Luton

Head off the M1 for a chance to play lord and lady of the manor

Luton is perhaps not the first place that springs to mind when one thinks of weekend break destinations. But on the spur of a hill ("hoo" in Saxon) just south of the town lies a Robert Adam stately pile, set in 1,065 acres of Capability Brown parkland. After years of neglect, Luton Hoo has been converted into a five-star golf and spa hotel by the country-house hotel chain Elite Hotels.

You might recognise Luton Hoo's Versailles-like state rooms – all exotic marble panelwork, giant tapestries, elaborate fireplaces and chandeliers – from one of the reception scenes in 'Four Weddings and Funeral'. There is a real sense of a once-great house reawakening. At the weekends, families come for tea in the great drawing room, and despite the liveried doormen, a pleasingly unstuffy atmosphere prevails.



The bedrooms

Though newly refitted, the bedrooms at Luton Hoo have the kind of old-fashioned feel that one might expect to find in a private stately home. There's a touch of the 1980s – a splash of peach paint here; stripy upholstery there; gold taps in the bathroom. It's an endearing enough quirk, with none of the frayed edges you'd associate with impoverished aristos' residences. Instead, the rooms are spacious, individually decorated, with comfy sofas and antique and reproduction furniture; there are fine views over the parkland and many rooms have private terraces. The main house has 35 bedrooms, with 109 others in the less-grand, adjacent wings.



The food and drink

The Wernher restaurant, named after the diamond magnate who remodelled Luton Hoo in the early 20th century, is an absurdly grand room in which gentlemen are required to wear jackets. The seasonal, modern British menu is well executed, though on our visit, the kitchen was clearly struggling. Across the lawn is the more relaxed Adam's Brasserie.



The extras

There's an 18-hole golf course, a grass tennis court, fishing, boating, clay pigeon shooting and riding. There are the beautiful grounds to explore and a well-equipped spa with an exceptionally inviting pool.



The access

Seven bedrooms are equipped for guests with disabilities; a hearing loop is available in reception. The first child stays for free and additional children are charged £15 for B&B. Dogs are also welcome.



The bill

Doubles from £325 per room per night (minimum stay two nights) including breakfast and dinner. Two nights for three offered until 7 September.



The address

Luton Hoo Hotel, Golf and Spa, The Mansion House, Luton Hoo, Luton, Bedfordshire, LUI 3TQ (01582 734437; lutonhoo.com)

PROMOTED VIDEO
Independent Travel Videos
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Amsterdam
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Giverny
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in St John's
Independent Travel Videos
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Travel

    Recruitment Genius: Car Sales Executive - Franchised Main Dealer

    £30000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a great opportunity for...

    Recruitment Genius: Group Sales Manager - Field Based

    £21000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Located on the stunning Sandban...

    Guru Careers: Email Marketing Specialist

    £26 - 35k (DOE): Guru Careers: An Email Marketing Specialist is needed to join...

    Recruitment Genius: Tour Drivers - UK & European

    Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity to join a is a...

    Day In a Page

    Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

    Isis hostage crisis

    The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
    Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

    The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

    Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
    Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

    Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

    Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
    Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

    Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

    This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
    Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

    Cabbage is king again

    Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
    11 best winter skin treats

    Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

    Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
    Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

    Paul Scholes column

    The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
    Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

    Frank Warren's Ringside

    No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
    Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

    Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

    The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
    Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

    Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

    Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
    Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
    Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

    Comedians share stories of depression

    The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
    Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

    Has The Archers lost the plot?

    A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
    English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

    14 office buildings added to protected lists

    Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
    Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

    Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

    Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee