Viewing a hotel as a home-away-from-home is not a new concept, but is one that British design house and retailer, Laura Ashley, has taken to a new level with its recent opening, The Manor in Elstree, Hertfordshire. Situated 11 miles from London amongst 10 acres of picturesque gardens and natural woodland, the hotel marks 60 years of the company’s design heritage.
Laura Ashley’s first foray into the hotel business is an impressive one. All of the design and decoration has been undertaken by the company, which has reflected the elegant style of its products for a truly boutique interior.
The refurbishment of the old Tudor house – which dates back to 1540 – has retained many of the property’s original features, including the beams and cornerstones which have been used to decorate the ceilings in the reception.
Each of the 49 individually-styled guest rooms has been decorated using products from the latest Laura Ashley collections. All guest rooms include an en-suite bathroom, and are adorned with pastel colours, plush fabrics and ornate accessories.
The hotel’s Cavendish restaurant offers a luxuriant fine-dining experience in a relaxed setting. The menu changes every three months to reflect seasonality, and features a range of dishes using locally-sourced ingredients.
The Terrace Bar enjoys views of London and the hotel gardens. Also styled by Laura Ashley, the bar provides an intimate and sophisticated space ideal for enjoying afternoon tea or one of the hotel’s 50 fine whiskys by the log fire.
The hotel’s corporate hospitality offering provides its business guests with a welcoming and original conference venue. The five stylish conference suites – which feature access to private garden areas – can accommodate up to 80 people for seminars, meetings, conferences and training sessions.
The hotel’s setting and style makes it a classic venue for weddings and special events, and the property offers a number of elegant suites to suit a range of options. The Arkley Suite, for example, comfortably accommodates up to 120 guests, and offers direct access to the gardens and its own private bar.
The Cavendish Room, meanwhile, is a characterful wood-panelled dining room that can accommodate up to 64 guests in a variety of table plans. This space can also connect with the Regency Room – which features impressive chandelier lighting - to increase the guest count to 84.
Located adjacent to the Cavendish and Regency rooms, the Beaufort Room features a large fireplace with an ornate mantlepiece, and is panelled throughout with wood believed to date back to the 1600s. This space comfortably seats 40 guests, and can be used in conjunction with the above two rooms to cater for a maximum of 124 people.