Yes, they called it a boutique country house hotel in England. Behind the modesty it is, in fact, a luxury country house hotel. And a different, original but so refined luxury english hotel. Set in the heart of the New Foret National Park, just an hour and half drive from London and one minute from the tiny town of Lyndhurst.
Once a hunting lodge in the 13th century, the house has been transformed in a stunning Regency Country house. Ben Pentreath of Working Group Design restored the main house and its extension while Charles Morris designed the additional buildings to make a total of 14 suites and 15 rooms. The hotel includes also a series of classically designed sitting rooms, library, dining room, informal eatery, bar, cellar and billiard room.
The interiors have been created by David Collins as a modern interpretation of the classic English Country House look. His style is both luxurious and relaxed, using a subtile colour palette and local materials like ash and stone. So he kept Lime Wood’s original charm, the furniture is an eclectic mix of antique and bespoke pieces while the hand-picked artwork and objets d’art.
There are two restaurants. The Dining Room is chic and glamourous, while The Scullery is brasserie. I have eaten very good organic local produces from the nearby farms and forest like venison, home-reared beef and lamb, odorant garlic and wild mushrooms.
The wine list is impressive and intelligent. They let me visit the cellar where French Grand Crus are lying amongst exclusive wines from all around the world.
The hotel Director, Justin Pinchbeck, formerly of The Zetter hotel in London, brings with his team a relax but sophisticated style, mixing high standards and an atmosphere full of character and individuality.