Sophie Ritchie checks into The Spread Eagle, a chicly historic hotel nestled in the heart of West Sussex
There are few country towns more charming than Midhurst. Maybe it’s the bustle of the ancient high street lined with shops or the hum of diners chatting in cosy eateries. There’s definitely a buzz about it, but in a somewhat suave fashion.
The only thing irks is the confusing road system, which swerves and twists around the buildings like a narrow maze. At the end of the town however, awaits a hotel worth battling your Sat Nav for – the historic Spread Eagle hotel and spa, a 39-room hideaway dating back to 1430.
It’s quaint from the outset, a white-walled beauty dotted with lattice windows which was once one of England’s oldest coaching houses. Nowadays, the horse and carriages have been updated to newer models… there’s a Bentley purring on the drive when I pull in.
Inside awaits a further mix of archaic charm and modern luxury. The hotel is filled with antiques and the floors creak with every step upstairs – but this is mingled with an airy conservatory, terrace and contemporary spa.
With 39 bedrooms, it’s petite in size but big on character. Some rooms even come with classic four poster beds for that added authentic feel. My own, the Feature Four Poster Room unsurprisingly does too.
It’s old fashioned in style with a large fireplace, white walls and windows that offer a fantastic view across the below car park.
It also comes with a smooth wooden desk topped with classics to peruse, as well as hanging art adorned with gilded frames. With expensive vases and an enormous bed positioned in the centre of the room, it feels like it belongs in a Poldark scene.
Chic modern touches come in the form of a Nespresso machine and Temple Spa goodies found in the spacious bathroom. There’s also a little G&T kit waiting for me upon arrival, a little touch that showcases the charm of this country pile.
The Spread Eagle’s modern spa is the golden egg of this property. Indulge with a swim in the pool with a Scandinavian-style vaulted ceiling or pamper yourself with one of four treatment rooms and a range of facials, massages and soothing body wraps. There’s also a small but well equipped gym, plus exercise classes too.
With an inglenook fireplace covered with hanging copper pots, the restaurant offers an elegant but unimposing dining experience. Dishes range from grilled sea bass to tender rump of lamb, with plenty of British trademarks served in fine dining style.
Breakfast is also eaten here, a combination of continental bites (think feta and watermelon salad as well as fresh pastry piles) plus a host of cooked options. Service can be slow, but it’s served with a smile.
The Wordrobe Verdict
If it’s a rural rendezvous you’re after, book a room at The Spread Eagle. Brimming with charm and historic beauty, this little hideaway is perfect for your next serene spa break.
Make it happen
Cost: Rates for The Feature Four Poster Room start from £289 per night. Click here or phone 01730 816911 to make a booking.
Where: South St, Midhurst GU29 9NH