Sunday, December 16, 2007

The Evesham Hotel

I had a wonderful weekend staying over at the Evesham Hotel in Evesham, Worcestershire with Sue. This beautiful old place started life in 1540, playing host to John Wesley, he of the Methodists, a few hundred years later. John Jenkinson and his staff run the place now and I'm sure John Wesley would turn in his grave.

The hotel was like nothing else I'd ever experienced. In my job, I get to travel a little and stay at some pretty nice hotels once in a while. But they're so.... corporate. You usually get a trouserpress, a TV a large bed and a bath / shower with an over priced mini bar.

At the Evesham Hotel, voted for having the best loos in Britain (!) You get a huge shovel full of eccentricity. Basil Fawlty has nothing on this place, though the owner bears some incredible similarities. The whole place is British eccentricity at its best.

I felt I was on the set of an Ealing cinema film circa 1958. If you have kids, they will absolutely love this place. Themed Alice in Wonderland bedrooms and excellent free wifi fit in alongside the telephone box (?!) that sits by the side of a lovely pool. Board games, sofas and ...stuff.... just seems be crammed into every conceivable place. The whole place seemed to have been designed by Enid Blyton, Billy Bunter and a host of public schoolboys after lashings of ginger beer and marmalade sandwiches.

The rooms are beautifully set with the most comfortable beds and well maintained two acred gardens. The whole hotel is crammed with memorabilia, mostly teddy bear themed, though you can see a magnificent array of whisky locked away in a cupboard next to a lifesized dennis the menace figure and a skeleton propped on an armchair. Your key ring is fastened to a conventionally sized teddy bear and the owner; John Jenkinson is a wonderful, eccentric lunatic.

Sue and I didn't realise that we were in for a Christmas Party for the hotel residents. In the dining room, lots of older folks were about and we sat down to enjoy a quiet evening.

At the table, we had a load of small coloured balls, party hats, long balloons with an inflater and funny glasses. Everyone started to let off the balloons around the place, and the elderly guests started throwing the coloured balls. Eh?! The frivoloty went on into the evening. It was a perfect way to spend a 40th birthday. If you're not British, and you want to see England at its most beautiful and eccentric, you absolutely must put this place ono your list as something to do before you shuffle off this mortal coil.

After pudding, cheese and biscuits and coffee we were later treated to John walking in to the dining room dressed as a fairy with a megaphone for some Christmas carols that everyone had to join in with. The food was fabulous, the wine and cider I ordered absolutely beautiful and the whole weekend just a brilliant, wonderful experience. Lunch every Sunday is a fabulous buffet at just £10 a head - Sue and I will definitely be returning.

If ever you're looking to go somewhere really special - even just to visit the nationally famed toilets then visit the Evesham Hotel - you will not be disappointed.

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