Take a break in HRH’s favourite town and head to Castle Hotel Windsor for a stay filled with both character and culture, says Sophie Ritchie
Blending features from a 500-year-old past with modern amenities and suave interior design, Castle Hotel Windsor, a member of the prestigious MGallery Collection, is a boutique hotel that retains many fascinating details from its sumptuously rich heritage.
Sitting elegantly on Windsor’s winding high street, this character-rich property is no new kid on the block – it’s one of Windsor’s oldest buildings, established originally as a 16th century inn that welcomed weary lodgers traveling through the town.
I might not have arrived on horseback, but I imagine the M25’s traffic is as draining as avoiding dangerous Highwaymen. Luckily for me, Castle Hotel’s reception team are both friendly and efficient, making check-in a smooth and stress-free process. The greetings continue when I arrive at my 3rd floor room, where a generous platter of fruit and small cakes await me. Well, when in Windsor.
Castle Hotel Windsor features 108 rooms to choose from, each filled with luxurious yet comfortable furnishings. The neutral colour schemes are easy on the eye; this space is relaxing and calm, leaving Windsor’s bustle firmly outside (thanks to the help of double-glazed windows too).
My own abode is vastly spacious, furnished with leather-backed chairs, a dressing table, TV and large bed. The one drawback to staying in such an ancient property is that the floors creak with every footstep (they are almost 500 years old after all) so leave the indoor workouts back at home.
Long popular with visiting guests, even the Duke of Wellington himself once spent the night. I’m sure he’d be impressed by 2020’s cloud-like duvets and toiletry-brimming bathrooms too, complete with rain shower and bath for added pampering.
All meals are served in the downstairs Marco Pierre White Restaurant, decorated in equally sumptuous fashion with a mix of light olive green banquet seating and velvet-clad chairs.
The menu, with a strong emphasis on meat and fish dishes, is full of British flavours and ingredients to keep you warm on a winter’s night. The cocktails might come with London price tags but are well worth a sip, especially for Espresso Martini enthusiasts.
Breakfast is also served here daily from 7am to 10.30am on weekdays and 7.30am to 11.00am on weekends. Enjoy an a la carte selection of continental and hot options – as well as plenty of coffee to help kickstart the day ahead.
What to do
Windsor is a town that boasts as much culture as the hotel itself, with plenty to peruse and see. Fans of The Crown should of course visit Her Majesty’s Windsor Castle or trek the famous Long Walk, the historic three mile avenue from Windsor Castle to the Copper Horse Statue.
Foodies can also work their way through a list of fantastic restaurants and cafes, including the Bel & Dragon, Misugo Japanese and The Waterside Inn (the 10-minute drive is well-worth the 3 Michelin stars). There’s also the nearby Windsor & Eton Brewery, where visitors can taste a number of signature beers.
Should you be in the mood to shop, Windsor’s plethora of big fashion brands and boutiques are just a credit card swipe away from the hotel, as well as a number of cozy coffee shops to pitstop at along the way.
The Wordrobe Verdict
If you’re looking for a slow-paced staycation, book Castle Hotel Windsor for a weekend of local exploring and eating. Ideal for history buffs and adventurers alike, there’s plenty to enjoy at this chic boutique property.
Make it happen
Where: 8 High St, Windsor SL4 1LJ
How: Please visit castlehotelwindsor.com or phone 01753 851577 to make a booking.
Cost: Rooms from £104 per night.
Words by Sophie Ritchie, editor.