Where should I even begin…So much has happened in just two days! We recently spent the most gorgeous weekend getaway in every parent’s dream house: a place where a lot of help with the little ones is instantly available, but add spa, fresh air, horsies, deer and a walk in the woods as real perks to keep you happy!
We stayed at the New Park Manor (part of the Luxury Family Hotels) which is a luxury country house hotel and spa, and a former favourite hunting lodge of King Charles II. While parents are encouraged to spend quality time as a family, the hotel’s den team and complimentary childcare facilities ensure that parents can take time out to relax, too.
Here’s a bit more about our stay…
The family suite
The hotel has 25 rooms, from traditionally decorated family suites to super-contemporary interconnecting rooms. We spent 2 nights in the family suite which was such a lovely traditional English decorated space! Except for all the gear we found for the little ones (cot, bath stool, baby change mat, nappy bin etc) the view was absolutely breathtaking. In addition to the master bedroom, there is a second room with twin beds and a large shared bathroom with a separate shower and bath that we made the most of. We didn’t use it during our stay, but a baby video monitoring system is also available free of charge, which means you can head out for dinner whilst still keeping an eye on little ones. Did I mention that upon arrival we found the most scrumptious cookie treats for the little ones?
New Park Manor has a beautiful spa area with an indoor pool overlooking the forest – watching horsies while swimming has become one of the highlights of our trip here; there is also a sauna, steam room and outdoor hot tub, as well as an outdoor pool which is open during summer. The 16-metre indoor pool was the main attraction for Lucas as he’s such a water boy and Amelie had her first swimming lessons with daddy. The Bath House Spa offers Elemis spa treatments, including rehydrating and cleansing facials, manicures and pedicures. I had a 30 minutes facial which was exactly what I needed (felt 0 guilty feelings as the kids were well looked after).
Creche & Den & Cinema rooms
Another highlight of our trip! And possibly the best selling point of the hotel group!
Children up to eight can make the most of the hotel’s den sessions, which are complimentary for two hours each day. My husband and I went for a long walk on the first day and chilled at the spa on the second day. What a difference a couple of hours of being childfree can make to your energy levels! Uninterrupted adult chats!
Another brilliant space is the Cinema Room which is a separate chill-out zone with lots of activities such as table football, board games and reading books. We watched Paddington while the kiddies also multitasked while playing next to us. I also spotted several toy boxes around the hotel.
There are two restaurants at the hotel, including one which is just for adults and well-behaved over-12s. Breakfast is served in the beautiful conservatory restaurant and the pancakes are to die for! The highchairs are nicely equipped for the little ones and kids menus have lots of options even for the fussiest wee eaters. While waiting for breakfast and lunch, Lucas was outside in the garden making friends.
There are a couple of lovely decorated lounges where afternoon tea, morning coffee, pre-dinner drinks and after-dinner cocktails can be served. There is a Juice Bar at the spa, and if good weather is on your side, you can make the most of the outdoor seating areas.
One helpful timing is having the children’s high tea served at 5pm, but families also have the chance to go for an alternative family dining experience from 6pm to 7.30pm.
We drove to the hotel from London, and it took us a couple of hours because we left right after picking up Lucas from school during rush hour. If you are thinking to get there by train, you can do so from London Waterloo to Brockenhurst which is only two miles from the hotel. There are plenty parking spaces, also an electric charger which made our journey even smoother; needless to say that my husband was over the moon not having to drive anywhere to charge the car.
In a nutshell, here are the highlights of our weekend getaway at the New Forest Hotel:
- Watching horses while swimming
- Child free afternoons: the creche and den service are brilliant services for parents
- Electric car charging point
- So close to the beach (only 10 minutes drive, scroll down for some pixels from our great afternoon on the beach)
Last but not least I feel I should add that New Manor Park is not a child/family friendly type of accommodation. It is all about the family! They take care of the detail so that parents don’t have to.
P.S. Our 2 night dinner, bed and breakfast stay has been hosted, including a 30 minutes spa experience. However we truly loved this space therefore we went for several other experiences (such as afternoon tea etc). We cannot recommend this hotel enough!