A visit to the pretty city of York in northern England is a must for anyone in the UK – tourist or local – as it is a true mecca of British history and culture. With roots in Viking England, and having officially been founded by the ancient Romans, its huge thirteenth century Gothic Minster, largely intact city walls and cosy atmosphere, make it the perfect place to spend a short break. I had the pleasure of spending a weekend in the city after I won a luxury weekend in York in a photography competition. Part and parcel of my prize was a two night stay at the Hotel du Vin, which I can’t wait to tell you all about!
After a long train journey from the south, we finally arrived into York at about 2pm. Dragging our suitcases behind us we made the short walk to the hotel, deciding to save the money we would have spent on a taxi in favour of a coffee and cake later in the afternoon. From York’s station the walk was just under ten minutes, giving our legs the opportunity to be stretched. We soon set our eyes upon on the attractive Hotel du Vin located in the Mount area of York, a leafy suburb filled with beautiful Victorian houses.
Just a short distance out of town, approximately a mile’s march from the city centre, the hotel was perfectly located for us, and was a pleasant setting for our weekend. We later discovered that not far up the road, in the direction of town, was Micklegate Bar, York’s most impressive gateway, and although we didn’t visit it, the city’s famous racecourse, the Knavesmire, was less than five minutes away by car!
The first thing that anyone will notice on arrival at the hotel, is the grand building itself, for it is in fact housed within a pretty cream-coloured Grade II listed mansion house. The handsome house, once an orphanage, is located back from the street behind railings and a line of trees, which provides a step back from the relatively busy road. To the front of the hotel is a small amount of guest seating, and during the summer months, a retro bottle green wine van is parked out the front where guests can order drinks and small nibbles. To the rear of the hotel is a large guest cark park.
Entering the building, we arrived in the small but cosy reception area where we were greeted by friendly and smartly presented staff. We received a warm welcome and were promptly handed the key for our room. Setting off for the annex where our room was located, we passed the gorgeous period staircase with a quirky wine glass chandelier hanging high above. The route to our room also allowed us to take in some of the hotel’s facilities, including the lobby, library, wine cellar and tasting room, and of course, the bar. We later discovered that the hotel also has an outdoor cigar shack for those interested.
Our room for the first night was a mezzanine double room. On the ground floor was the bedroom space, featuring a comfortable queen size bed with a TV adorning the opposite wall, a desk on which tea and coffee making facilities were available, along with a variety of other purchasable goodies, and a small room with a sink and toilet.
What made this room extra special was its mezzanine, home to the room’s bathroom. Climbing up the wooden stairs, we found a free standing roll-top bath and monsoon shower overlooking the rest of the room.
As with most hotels in the Hotel du Vin chain, the room was beautifully decorated with a deep grey carpet, wooden furniture and tasteful extra furnishings including plump cushions and comfortable seating.
Veuve Cliquot (Studio) Suite
Our second night at the hotel came with a nice surprise as we were upgraded to one of the hotel’s finest suites. Before we had even stepped into the room we knew it was going to be fabulous – I mean, not just any room could be named after a fine champagne!
And we were not wrong. Unlocking our door to our room for the night, we were met by a huge space with high sloped ceilings and exposed beams. The giant suite was effectively an open plan space with separate area for lounging, sleeping and bathing.
As you enter through the door, you are met by the living space straight ahead. The area is decked out with comfortable seating, a coffee table and a large flat screen TV – the perfect spot for kicking back, relaxing and watching a movie. This is exactly what we did do as later that evening one of the Harry Potters happened to be on.
To the right of the living space, was the open plan bathroom arrangement, with a large free standing bath, twin sinks and a spacious double walk-in monsoon shower. The bathroom was equipped with fluffy white towels and dressing gowns, along with luxurious Ren toiletries.
This leads me on to the bedroom area, located to the left of the room and separated from the rest of the space by a wooden beam divide. With a super king-size bed decked with fine Egyptian linen and cosy covers, I couldn’t have asked for a better bed for the night. At the foot of the bed was yet another huge plasma TV!
Added bonuses included an iPod dock as well as Bose surround sound which allowed us to chill out to music anywhere in the room, and provided welcome background noise as we were getting ready for the day. We were also provided with a Nespresso coffee machine along with a kettle and selection of tea bags – perfect for any hot drink lover such as I!
The Food – Dinner & Breakfast
Whilst we didn’t dine in the hotel’s bistro, we did order room service on our second evening. To be honest, I’m not one to usually do this but we both felt so exhausted after a long day walking around the city (and our room was so comfortable) that we weren’t really feeling like dressing up and heading to the restaurant. The menu was well-priced and there was plenty of variety; offering up a number of modern European dishes, made using produce from a local family run farm. With so many tempting options to choose from, it was a little overwhelming and so in the end, we went for the easy option and ordered two burgers. And I must say that it was delicious!
We also enjoyed breakfast in the bistro both mornings. Guests have both a buffet of continental breakfast items as well as a cooked breakfast menu to pick from. Naturally I had something from both – it would have been rude not to really! The cooked food was good, although portions quite small, so make sure you make the most of the buffet!
My two-night luxury stay at Hotel du Vin was a real treat and I can honestly say that the two days left me feeling both refreshed and pampered as I headed home. The staff and service was impeccable and we felt very welcome at the hotel.
So, if you are thinking of booking a luxurious short break in York, I would thoroughly recommend Hotel du Vin – you will not be let down!
What did you think of my Hotel du Vin York review? Have you recently enjoyed a stay there yourself, or would you consider it for an upcoming trip to York? If you want to know anything else about the hotel or if you enjoyed this post, please leave me a comment in the box below and let me know! Victoria x
Our stay in the Hotel du Vin was part of my prize from Taylors Coffee. All opinions are my own.