Formerly Ounce House – run by the Potts family – it was recently taken over by The Chestnut Group (headed by ex-banker Philip Turner). While there certainly have been changes, its excellence hasn’t been compromised. Perhaps this is why Genevieve, the Potts’ daughter, has chosen to stay on as host and receptionist. Staffed by sneaker-wearing youths and frequented by metropolitans, it’s no longer a guesthouse, but the experience is relaxing and the service instant. The swishing drapery of Ounce House have given way to a glitzier style, complete with a moody cocktail bar and glamorous dining room. Turner’s aim was to avoid hotel labels such as restaurant-with-rooms, guesthouse and so on, preferring it to be “simply eponymous with a great experience.”
The nine bedrooms are decorated in neutral colours combined with plush, luxurious fittings – both classic and glamorous. Bathrooms are very smart, and you’ll find home-made shortbread on arrival. The food generally is a great draw, with an option to sit at the chef’s table and watch Daniel Grigg (formerly chef at Gilpin Lodge, Langley Castle and Linthwaite House) in action. Our series editor Fiona Duncan especially enjoyed cauliflower risotto for dinner, and grapefruit granita with orange and thyme at breakfast.