Hambleton Hall hotel achieves Gold Standard
A country house hotel has made it into the crème de la crème of world travel guides.
Hambleton Hall is featured in the latest Condé Nast Traveller's Gold Standard – an annual publication of the magazine's favourite hotels, restaurants, bars and beach clubs around the world.
The venue, overlooking Rutland Water, is the only country house hotel in the United Kingdom to be included in the list for this year.
Owner Tim Hart said: "This is really fantastic news. It's a marvellous thing for us and very exciting for all the team.
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"The magazine specialises in prestige world travel for the rich and ritzy who go to the best hotels and restaurants around the world, so it's very important for us as a small, independent hotel.
"Word of mouth is very important to us and it's a rather remarkable thought that we're the only country house in the UK chosen to appear in the guide, which is fantastic."
It is the second major boost for Hambleton Hall's owners after its Hambleton Bakery, in nearby Exton, was crowned the best in Britain following a national television showdown watched by more than a million viewers.
Master bakers Julian Carter, 49, and Scott Kenny, 32, earned Hambleton the title by impressing judges in the final of ITV's hit show, Britain's Best Bakery, last month.
Mr Hart said it had been a good few weeks for the company.
"It's marvellous news, coming after the bakery winning the title of the best in Britain," he said.
"We've just had a very good patch.
"But every day is a new day in the world of hotels."
Describing the hotel, the Condé Nast Traveller magazine said: "Of all the smart British country-house hotels to have opened in the past half century, just one, Hambleton Hall, has remained impervious to fortune and is as fresh and magical as the day owners Tim and Stefa Hart first welcomed guests.
"It has sophisticated yet deeply comfortable classic English interiors.
"There is brilliant seasonal cooking in chef Aaron Patterson's Michelin-starred restaurant.
"The late Victorian house surveys the largest man-made lake in western Europe, which is wonderful for boating, fishing or cycling around its perimeter.
"After an afternoon in the fresh air, Hambleton's many aficionados return to their haven, where the chief sommelier and restaurant director have notched up 60 years of service between them and which continues to purr along, a healing sanctuary from the stresses of life."