Luxury-seekers are spoilt for choice in the Home Counties

Long-heralded as the perfect country escape from the urban drum of nearby London, the Home Counties are entering a golden age of hospitality with the imminent arrival of more high profile, luxury hotels to tempt the rich and famous.

Already home to iconic destinations such as Cliveden House, Stoke Park and Coworth Park, the affluent counties offer an easy commute for the city dweller as well as a close proximity to London Heathrow and national rail links for those coming from further afield. The area has seen healthy growth in tourism and hotel guests from both the regional and international markets. Add in the generous quantity of fine dining establishments appearing across the region and it’s easy to see why demand is on the up. A certain Royal Wedding earlier in the year can’t have hurt either!

So much interest and demand has prompted significant new investment in both new and existing properties as investors queue up to take a share of this destination’s success. We’ve taken a closer look at some of the most exciting new ventures and refurbs opening to paying guests in the coming months.

The Langley – Langley, Buckinghamshire

Sitting majestically on 500 acres of landscaped grounds, the former estate of the Third Duke of Marlborough, The Langley is combining a new build property with a total refurbishment of the Grade II Listed outbuilding, The Brew House. The property will have 41 individually-designed bedrooms by Dennis Irvine Studios and boast a 25,000 sq ft spa.

Owned and managed by City & Country Hotels Ltd. The Buckinghamshire property is the sister of The Wellesley Knightsbridge in London and a member of Marriott hotels premium brand, The Luxury Collection Hotels & Resorts.

We still await an official opening date but The Langley is certain to compete at the higher echelons of the 5-star market and attract a lucrative share of clientele who want to be first to experience everything it has to offer. It certainly promises to add even more competition at the top end of the luxury stay market in the area.

Monkey Island Estate – Bray, Berkshire

After many years of neglect, Monkey Island Hotel tired interior and overgrown grounds were crying out for fresh investment, energy and ideas. After finally closing its doors in 2016, the property was purchased by YSL hotels, best-known for its luxury all-inclusive resorts in Thailand as well as for its initial foray into the British market with the impressive Gainsborough House Hotel & Spa in Bath.

The Grade I listed hotel has undergone an extensive redesign over the last 18 months and, despite a delay in its expected opening date, its design – overseen by award-winning New York-based Champalimaud Design (which boasts a portfolio including The Dorchester in London) and its peaceful riverside setting promise to make this a truly bespoke destination for high-end travellers. Throw in the unique River Barge ‘Spa’ and its location in the village of Bray – the UK’s only village to boast 4 Michelin Star Restaurants – and we believe this is one to watch! Coming early 2019.

Savill Court Hotel – Englefield Green, Surrey

Another property undergoing a big investment programme is Savill Court, with much expected of its ambition to grab a share of the premier hotel market. Whilst having been a well-known brand in the local hotel market for many years, a business model heavily focused on conference business and a property needing serious investment has required a major rethink – and the result is certainly going to turn heads.

Savill Court has been closed for well over a year and the entirely new property promises to compete at the very highest level of hospitality in the area. The multi-million pound rebuild is delivering 219 bedrooms, a spa and banqueting facilities that should enable Savill Court to realise its aspiration of achieving a 5-sStar rating from opening.

Prospective online images of the finished property promise a truly special hotel and we wait with great anticipation for more details of its opening date.

Heckfield Place – Hampshire

While many on this list have missed their itended opening dates by many months, none can compare to Heckfield Place, which finally opened its doors in September 2018 after a reported six-year delay!

The pet project of Boston-based billionaire Gerald Chan, Heckfield Place has been on his family’s books for nearly 20 years but is only now delivering the ambitious vision he originally set out back in 2012. Originally intended to open in time for the London Olympics, property and its 400 acres is now under the astute management of Olivia Richli and is going to reset the bar in luxury hospitality.

With prices for its top suites as high as £10,000 per night (basic rates of £350+ PN), one of its latest coups is the appointment of Skye Gyngell, who has signed on as Culinary Director after leaving Petersham Nurseries, home of her acclaimed west London restaurant. Just as tempting will be an array of leisure options, including an underground cinema, the Bothy Spa and its seven treatment rooms, and a fleet of chauffeur-driven Land Rovers at your beck and call. This 47-bedroom property could very well be a game changer in the UK. As they say, the best things are worth waiting for…!