Sometimes, all you need to beat the COVID-19 blues, is simply a weekend getaway to the Cotswolds. Whisked away to the idyllic market town of Chipping Campden, we checked into The Noel Arms Hotel, a traditional inn that’s brimming with both charm and history.
The Noel Arms is one of the oldest Cotswold inns and rumour has it that Charles II found refuge in these very walls during the English civil war. We too found some welcome refuge within the stone façade of the Noel Arms, which was filled with plenty of warm touches and antique details as old as the hotel itself.
We stayed in one of the Double En Suite rooms, which was cosy but not lacking in any creature comforts. A Bespoke hotel property, each room at the Noel Arms is different, combining modern amenities with antique furnishings. The pièce de resistance has to be the hotel’s 1657 Four Poster room, which features a stunning wood-carved 17th-century bed.
The Dovers Bar restaurant serves traditional locally-sourced pub food with an Indian flair. Head Chef Indunil Upatissa was awarded the Great British Pub Awards for best Curry Chef three years running, and it’s easy to see why. It would be a crime to dine at The Dovers Bar without sampling Chef Indunil’s curries — and we tried both the Sri Lankan Black Lamb and the Ceylon Style Seafood Yellow curry which certainly did not disappoint. On a bright sunny day, the hotel’s sun terrace is a prime spot to spend an afternoon enjoying a cocktail or two.
Outside the hotel, there’s plenty of dog-friendly activities in Chipping Campden. The famous Cotswolds Way is just at the end of town and offers some pretty breath-taking walks. The Broadway Tower — which was once the Cotswolds highest tower — is not too far off too.
The Little Oak Vineyard is a brief jaunt away from town and offers dog-friendly wine-tasting that offers some of the best locally-grown wines. Most of the quaint and utterly charming restaurants, cafés and shops in Chipping Campden are dog-friendly too, so there’s never a shortage of things to see and do.
For those looking for a quieter escape, guests at the Noel Arms’ can pop into sister hotel, The Cotswold House Hotel Spa just next door to enjoy a relaxing afternoon at the spa. Otherwise, there is nothing better than getting cosy in front of the hotel’s roaring log fire, dog at your feet, and getting lost in a good book on a chilly early autumn evening.
Nightly rates at The Noel Arms start from £99 B&B for a double room