Smith Travel BlogTravel tales and hotel news from the boutique hotel experts at Mr & Mrs Smith

We talk honeymoon hotels with wedding experts

Posted by Rachel Juarez-Carr on March 31st, 2014

Blakes hotel in London holds a special place in Smith lore: our original Mr and Mrs Smith, James and Tamara Lohan, got married in the ultra-romantic Suite 007. Where better, then, to gather some of our favourite wedding bloggers for a chat about one of our favourite topics: honeymoon hotels? If you fancy finding out what our wedding fans favourite honeymoon hotels are, read on.

Tamara was on hand to inspire and inform, honeymoon expert Claire Wilson from our Travel Team joined us to give her insider insight into booking spectacular post-wedding holidays, and the delightful Anna Richardson served as moderator (and chief jumping-on-the-bed-er – it was that sort of night). Everyone sipped champagne, had their make-up done, leafed through our Little White Book of Honeymoons (above) and lounged about on the big red four-poster to get their portrait taken…

Anna Richardson, producer, presenter and journalist: ‘It would have to be the Post Ranch Inn in Big Sur, California. It’s the most magical, yet unpretentious hotel I’ve ever stayed in – with stunning ocean views and postcard-panoramic vistas of the Californian hills and forests. I went for a walk with my other half through a redwood forest and we stopped to bury our secret wishes beneath a giant redwood tree. I love the idea that our scrolls are still lying there, side by side, working their magic.’

Kim Herbing, The Wedding Community: ‘If you dream of luxury for your honeymoon but don’t have a huge budget, don’t despair! My absolute favourite reasonably priced hotel is The Grand Café & Rooms in South Africa. The minute I saw the pictures I assumed it would be expensive, but it’s not. Most rooms have balconies or patios from which you will be able to take in the most breathtaking views of the beach and lagoon. I love the rustic chic-ness of this boutique hotel, and you will too!’

Emily Pettiford and Jess Turley, Bespoke Bride: ‘We chose the Wanderlust hotel in Singapore; we loved the quirky interior design and how artistically decorated it is. We also love how you have to climb a ladder to get to your bed – it reminds us of being a kid again and having to climb to the top bunk!’

Francesca Cribb, Hitched: ‘My husband and I met in a hot tub, so spa hotels are important to us. There are too many incredible resorts to choose from, but if I could choose just one as a favourite it would be Bellevue Syrene in Sorrento, Italy. The phenomenal, historic architecture, individuality of each room and breathtaking views make this hotel the ultimate location for a romantic weekend away or a honeymoon close to home. It’s definitely on my future-holiday list.’

Harriet Rouse, Love Scarlett: ‘Seeing as I am a very pale person, I’ve gone against the classic tropical options and plumped for Iceland, where my complexion is relatively bronzed. Having married in the winter myself and opted for a Caribbean honeymoon, I wish now that I’d had the guts to continue the winter theme and go for a chillier honeymoon, too. Iceland is probably one of my favourite places on earth, and 101 Hotel overlooking the harbour made me long to be back in Reykjavik drinking strong coffee all day long and mooching through vintage shops.’

Naoise McNally, One Fab Day:Royal Malewane would be the dream for me – what better way to start off married life and celebrate an amazing wedding than with a luxury escape to the heart of the African bush? A long day of wildlife spotting followed by a gourmet meal before heading to a four-poster bed sounds like a heavenly honeymoon to me.’

Louise Beukes, B.Loved: ‘My favourite honeymoon hotel has to be Gorah Elephant Camp. I’m a huge champion of South Africa as a whole and think this magical place should be on every honeymooner’s shortlist! A safari has to be the ultimate in relaxation after the planning and excitement of your wedding, and what could be more romantic than a tented lodge complete with canopied beds and luxury service?’

Everyone headed home with a gift bag packed with gorgeous goodies; the ‘Just Married’ cookies from Biscuiteers were a particular hit.

To plan your ideal honeymoon, ask our honeymoon experts: they know all the world’s best post-wedding holiday hotspots. If you’d like us to match you with the perfect specialist to give you personalised honeymoon inspiration, you can give us your honeymoon wishlist here.

Many thanks to Blakes, Biscuiteers, Lindt, Noble Isle, Birchbox and Anna Richardson. All photos by Rachel Juarez-Carr.



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Phulay Bay, Krabi: hotel of the week

Posted by Sarah Jappy on March 27th, 2014

Phulay Bay, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve Hotel – Krabi – Thailand
This week, we’re feeling totally tropical (no, we don’t mean *that*). Sitting pretty by the Andaman Sea, Phulay Bay, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve‘s lush contemporary villas showcase traditional Thai elegance and modern flair. Explore the nearby archipelagos, relax at the indulgent spa or find inner peace with a yoga session. This rejuvenating retreat can’t help but calm even the most muddled of minds.

Style
Peaceful elegance
Setting Andaman Coast

Phulay Bay, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve, Krabi, ThailandWhy this week? As the end of the dry season approaches and with the Easter holidays almost upon us, this is the perfect time to replenish your energy and unwind in Krabi, Thailand. Laze by the pool in your own secluded cabana, or take a boat trip to explore a neighbouring island. Make the most of your relaxing getaway with this Phulay Bay hotel offer for Smith members: the Andaman Wellness Retreat package, which includes a healthy daily lunch, yoga, meditation and massage therapy.

Our favourite bits Each villa feels like your own peaceful palace, and with views across the bay and into the vibrant leafy surroundings from your window, there’s every reason to just stay in for the day. You’ll struggle to get yourself out of the sprawling big bed every morning but, if you can do it, the resort is your oyster. Relax in motion with candlelit yoga or eat fresh, organic produce at Raw Café, where all ingredients sourced from local markets. To really unwind and escape the daily grind, take a day-trip to the pristine beaches of Hong Island. Explore the labyrinth of underwater caves and snorkel in the clear blue waters (don’t forget your underwater GoPro) or just stake out a patch of sand with your pre-prepared picnic from the resort. If you wish to venture further, there are 130 islands to explore around Krabi.

Phulay Bay, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve, Krabi, ThailandMr & Mrs Smith say… ‘Like the portals to a forgotten empire, two imposing doors open gradually to reveal Phulay Bay’s regal courtyard enclosed by 30-foot walls. Half expecting to be greeted by a burly, sabre-wielding gatekeeper, we’re relieved to be met by beaming smiles and refreshing herb-infused cocktails. After winding through a palm-fringed corridor, we cross an expansive water feature, padding over limestone stepping-stones. At each foot-fall a gong sounds out our arrival. Mrs Smith loves the theatrics and puts on a suitably majestic air.

The charismatic Song, our personal butler, whisks us away in a golf buggy to check in at our Reserve Pavilion, whizzing past cascading streams and verdant gardens bulging with mangosteen trees. A wooden bridge, over a bubbling waterway, leads to our new home on stilts. Song slides the huge glass door open to show off the four-metre-long bed (the biggest I’ve ever seen!).’ Read the full anonymous review of Phulay Bay, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve

Browse more Smith hotels in Thailand or search all Mr & Mrs Smith hotel offers.*

*Copy compiled by Katherine Williams



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Mr & Mrs Smith, MBE

Posted by Rachel Juarez-Carr on March 26th, 2014

Mr & Mrs Smith, MBE

Congratulations to our co-founders, James and Tamara Lohan, who this week were made MBEs at Buckingham Palace!

The original Mr and Mrs Smith were awarded the honour for their service to travel, and all of us Smith staff around the world are tremendously proud.



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Lucknam Park, Wiltshire: hotel of the week

Posted by Rachel Juarez-Carr on March 21st, 2014

Hungry? Read on. We have a classic Great British break to recommend to you this week at Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa in Wiltshire, a stately country pile that’s all gorgeous grounds, glossy fillies and gourmet delights. Bring your appetite…

Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa in Wiltshire

Style Epicurean country pile
Setting Woodland, hedges and herbs

 Why this week? Like everything at Lucknam, the cookery school is first-class… and there’s a particularly tasty two-day course coming up soon. Nutritionist Kate Sheen and the school’s head chef Hrishikesh Desai have created the Eat Well Live Well wellbeing retreat to teach conscientious gourmandes the tricks of deliciously healthy dining.

Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa in Wiltshire Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa  Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa Our favourite bits… Lucknam’s the sort of place that makes you break out clichés about ‘having it all’: there’s an indoor heated pool, an indoor/outdoor hydrotherapy pool and an outdoor saltwater plunge pool, for starters, and then an award-winning spa with nine luxurious treatment rooms, thermal cabins, saunas, steam rooms and so on – and if that all sounds too relaxing, how about the personal trainers, fitness classes, equestrian centre, tennis courts, croquet, bicycles, walking trails and football pitch? The style is spot-on, too: The decadent Coral Suite has a four-poster bed with a pleated canopy and a spectacular ornate chandelier, while the romantic Juliet Suite has windows hung with chinoiserie silk curtains to match the swathes of blue and cream bead-trimmed silk around the bed.

Mr & Mrs Smith say… ‘We choose the Gourmet Menu, and it’s a fabulous meal. Seven courses begin with mini ice-cream cones of salmon, take in superb loin of local Wiltshire lamb with white asparagus and morels, and end with a show-stopping pudding of banana tart, salted caramel ice-cream and popcorn foam. The waiters have something in common with everyone working at Lucknam Park: that indefinable essence that epitomises exceptional service. Nothing is too much trouble, every request is met with ease, and most wondrous of all you just really like them. That’s rare in individuals, but to find it in an entire staff must be almost unique.’ Read the full anonymous review of Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa

You say… ‘The staff at Lucknam Park has the happy ability to make you feel worry and pressure free as soon as you arrive at the hotel. It’s an extremely nice place to stay and anything you ask for will be there for you very quickly. We have stayed at the hotel about six times over the past few years and it never fails to make you feel happy and cossetted.’ Margaret, SilverSmith, stayed in January 2014.

Find other Wiltshire boutique hotels, or search all of the Mr & Mrs Smith hotel offers.



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Gourmet Getaways #3: Gidleigh Park

Posted by Kate Weir on March 18th, 2014

Gourmet hotel | Gidleigh Park DevonFor the third instalment in our Gourmet Getaways series we’re brandishing our knives and forks in Michael Caines’ much-lauded, two-Michelin-star restaurant at Devon-set moorland manor Gidleigh Park, which takes pride of place in our new gourmet hotels collection. Caines’ cuisine regularly tops foodie-favourite lists; and we’re not ones to argue – in fact we firmly believe that his signature eight-course tasting menu is quite simply one of the most spectacular sensory experiences you can have with your clothes on, at least until Gidleigh Park relax their dress code.

Gourmet hotel | Michael Caines at Gidleigh ParkGastronomic genius aside, this luxurious Arts and Crafts manor house on Dartmoor would be worth a visit even if it weren’t for Michael ‘not the actor’ Caines’ award-magnet of a restaurant, but the oak-pannelled elegance of Gidleigh’s dining room and the breathtaking inventiveness of Caines’ kitchen make it a must-stay. The Modern European dishes are crafted from resolutely West Country ingredients, and the hotel even has its own kitchen garden to provide the greens served up on the restaurant’s tasting menu.

Gourmet hotels | Gidleigh Park RestaurantSo, what could possibly make the UK’s most desirable dining experience – encased in a quintessentially British black-and-white country manor and garnished with Dartmoor’s wild surrounds – any better? How about an exclusive dinner package for Smith members? We’re offering two-night stays (from 9 March to 1 May 2014) with a full English breakfast, tea tray and an à la carte dinner dreamed up by the ‘Wizard of the West’ for £545 a night, per room. Call our expert Travel Team on 0845 034 0701 to book your stay.

To sate your appetite in the meantime, Caines’ has bestowed a little of his epicurean alchemy on our Gourmet Getaways UK email series, which showcases the best hotel restaurants in our collection (to receive these, just sign up for free Smith membership); this recipe is taken from his tasting menu and bears the hallmark of his 20-year tenure as the hotel’s premier tastemaker.

Salt cod with samphire, crab, chorizo and lemon


Gourmet hotels | Michael Caines' tasting menuIngredients

• 8 skinned cod fillets

• salt

For the chorizo foam:

• 100g butter

• 200g shallots

• 200g cooking chorizo

• 300ml fish stock

• 2–3 roasted and skinned red peppers

• Half a tablespoon of smoked paprika

• 1 sprig of thyme

• 1 bay leaf

• 250ml water

• 100ml skimmed milk

• 60g butter (to finish)

For the lemon purée:

• Peel of 30 lemons

• 4 tablespoons turmeric

• 600g caster sugar

For the stock syrup:

• 300g caster sugar

• 300ml water

For the crab and samphire:

• 200g white crab meat

• 50g samphire

• 1 sprig of tarragon

Method

1 Sprinkle 4g of salt for every 100g of cod evenly over the fish; leave for eight hours, then wash off the salt and dry the fish with a cloth.

2 To make the lemon purée, place the lemon peel in a pan and just cover with water, add the turmeric and 60g sugar, bring to a boil, then refresh the water.

3 Repeat nine more times, adding 60g sugar (but no more turmeric) for each blanch.

4 After the last blanch, blitz the peel until you have a thick, smooth purée (add water if necessary).

5 For the crab, blanch the samphire for 30 seconds in boiling water, then refresh with iced water.

6 Finely chop the samphire and tarragon, then mix with crab meat, mayonnaise and seasoning.

7 For the foam, sweat the shallots in foaming butter until soft, but without colouring.

8 Add the chorizo and cook for two minutes.

9 Add the paprika, thyme and bay leaf, then season.

10 Blend the red pepper and fish stock then add to the chorizo.

11 Add the milk and water and bring to a boil, then leave to simmer for 20 minutes.

12 Pass the liquid through a fine sieve, mix with 60g of butter and season.

13 Cook the cod in foaming butter for 2 minutes on one side, then transfer to a 180º oven for four minutes.

14 Boil 300g sugar with 300ml water to make stock syrup, then add to the purée, season and add a spritz of lemon and a knob of butter before serving.

15 Plate up the cod topped with a spoonful of the crab mix, and surround it with a few cubes of chorizo, the chorizo foam and a few spoons of lemon purée.

If we’ve whetted your appetite, why not find a fine-dining hotel in our gourmet stays collection…



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Postcard from London: spa hotel Shoreditch Rooms’ rooftop highs

Posted by Madevi Dailly on March 17th, 2014

Rooftop pool | Shoreditch Rooms, London

Spring is finally here and we’re bursting with joy. Barbecues! Bare legs! Long afternoons in the park! The capital is tipsy on sunshine and heading to the best roofs with a view, cocktail firmly in hand. Our pick of the crop? The magnificent sixth-floor pool at London spa hotel Shoreditch House, a splendid stretch of Mediterranean-warm water flanked by some very inviting sunloungers. It may have come up against some stiff competition recently (if you haven’t visited yet, our latest East-end darling Ace Hotel does a fine line in hipster-cool swagger), but a stay in the adjoining Shoreditch Rooms still tops our list of London must-dos.

Shoreditch Rooms Cowshed Spa, LondonShoreditch Rooms | spa manicuresYes, a lot of its appeal comes from the members-only club, with its intimate nooks, City views and exclusive events (last time team Smith were there, Foxes staged a short unplugged set in the Library), but if you want to spoil yourself rotten, the ground-floor Cowshed spa has it clinched. The manicure stations are of the deep-leather-armchair variety, with vintage TV sets and lap pillows for complete relaxation. Downstairs, in the basement’s treatment rooms, there’s everything from head massages to pedicures on the spa’s horn-to-hoof menu. The Cowshed Moody Massage (£55 for 45 minutes) left us happy, glowing and downright giddy – just as good as a rooftop cocktail, should the weather unexpectedly turn.

No self-respecting getaway is complete without a little spa treat… Take some inspiration from our spa hotel collection, featuring the prettiest pools, most exotic products and tantalising treatments in the world.



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Rancho Valencia, San Diego: hotel of the week

Posted by Kate Thorman on March 14th, 2014

Never has decadence felt so healthy as at Rancho Valencia, a village-like compound of spa treatments, tennis lessons and locally sourced dining set amid the horse farms and citrus groves 25 miles north of downtown San Diego.

Rancho Valencia | Mr & Mrs Smith hotels

Style Courting favour
Setting Californian ranchlands

Rancho Valencia restaurant | Mr & Mrs Smith hotelsWhy this week? We never need a reason to go somewhere sunny, beautiful and luxurious, but it certainly doesn’t hurt that this outdoorsy retreat-of-the-stars just finished its brand-new tennis courts and clubhouse and is putting the final touches on its miles of picturesque private hiking trails. Throw in their $250 resort credit offer for stays from now until the end of June 2014 and we don’t need any more nudging.

Our favourite bits… At this sprawling, Southern California ranchland resort, the spa treatments are all-natural and all-indulgent, the tennis club is staffed with former champions and each Spanish-style Suite has only the best creature comforts, along with private patios overlooking classic California hills. We’d move in forever if we could, and feel absolutely great about it.

Rancho Valencia suite | Mr & Mrs Smith hotelsMr & Mrs Smith say… ‘Waking up here is an anticipated event. After all, what better motivator is there for springing out of bed than to collect the carafe of freshly squeezed orange juice, made right on property, at one’s door? All just part of the morning routine.

Designed with the lingering escape in mind, this is the spot where I’d run away to recuperate if I was a first wife banished by the arrival of a second trophy-ier wife. Walking around the olive grove on the property – all the herbs for the kitchen are grown on-site, and there are also six honeybee hives – it hit me, too, that this might be a good place to come and write a two-act play. Peace. Serenity. And a more likely retreat scenario for yours truly.’ Read the full Mr & Mrs Smith review

Browse more California hotels or search all Mr & Mrs Smith hotel offers.



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Top 10 hotels to book for Easter

Posted by Lucy Fennings on March 6th, 2014

Easter hotels | Cotswolds spa hotel Cowley ManorSorted out your Easter weekend plans? No? Tsk tsk. We’ve done the hard work for all you time-short, plan-lacking escape-seekers by rounding up short-break destinations for the fast approaching long weekend. We’ve still got plenty of romantic hotels with Easter availability (but probably not for long): below are 10 of our favourites.

Be it country comforts, a city fix, a spot of sun or some mountain-top fun you’re after, take your pick from this carefully chosen bunch of long-weekend legends, from riads in Morocco to hip London love nests. After all, breakfast in bed and lazy lie-ins are what bank holidays are all about…

Easter hotels: Cowley Manor, CotswoldsCOWLEY MANOR
What? Spa-toting sanctuary
Where? The Cotswolds, UK

How we do love to be beside the C-side… Head to über-cool country house Cowley Manor where the spa’s the star, to indulge in the multiple indulgent treatments on offer using bespoke product line, Green & Spring. Massage at the manor has a certain ring to it: opt for the hot stone treatment for maximum muscular relaxation. With not one, but two swimming pools (indoor and outdoor) on the estate, you’ll kick yourself if don’t leave time for a swim, too.

Get a room! From £295 a night.

Easter hotels: Barcelona's Hotel PulitzerHOTEL PULITZER
What? Hip hispanic hotspot
Where? Barcelona

Slap-bang central in Barcelona sits this artsy Asian-inspired hotel. Its laid-back luxury is all down to the well thought-out interiors dotted with antiques. Bedrooms are sleek and pared-back, but retain personality with interesting artworks and designer furniture, giving them an architect’s studio feel. You’ll want to stay in, but fold-up bikes beckon for exploring this charismatic city. One of Barcelona’s most trendy hangouts is the Pulitzer’s own rooftop terrace, home to a heavenly cocktail list – the martinis alone will motivate you for the cycle back to base.

Get a room! From £176 a night.

Easter hotels: Le Palais Paysan, Morocco

LE PALAIS PAYSAN
What? Sun-blessed rural bolthole
Where? Morocco

Set in the foothills of the Atlas mountains, a 40-minute drive from Marrakech, the landscape surrounding this Moroccan country retreat lends itself to exhilarating activities. Get in touch with your inner adventurer and take to the hills on foot, on horseback or even on the hotel’s mountain bikes. After working up an appetite, amble out to the candlelit terrace and admire the terrain you’ve trekked while tucking in to some delicious Mediterranean-Moroccan fare prepared for you by chef Ahmad.

Get a room! From £140 a night.

Easter hotels: Baudon de Mauny, MontpellierBAUDON DE MAUNY
What? Design-savvy flâneur digs
Where? Montpellier, France

This grand townhouse has a central but discreet location, tucked away down a secluded side-street and just minutes from the Musée Fabre – home to an impressive centuries-spanning art collection. With five lord-of-the-manor-sized bedrooms that have period details and modern pizzazz aplenty, glamorous Baudon de Mauny is the perfect city bolthole: right at the heart of Montpellier, best explored on foot and close to many of the city’s culinary hotspots. Bon appetit!

Get a room! From £128 a night.

Easter hotels in Paris: Hôtel de NellHOTEL DE NELL
What? French Zen den
Where? Paris

Ultra-contemporary, minimal decor; great location; oodles of French ooh là là: Hôtel de Nell is an on-point Parisian pièd-à-terre from which to explore the city. In the lively ninth but pleasingly off the tourist track, it’s the perfect retreat in the evenings to unwind, wine and dine. The hotel’s restaurant La Régalade Conservatoire has a local following and is worthy of its gourmet reputation: chef Bruno Doucet’s team serves mouthwatering bistronomy whipped up with produce picked from the local market daily. Desserts are particularly memorable: you’ll love the poached pear with almond mousse and anise crumble.

Get a room! From £202 a night.

Easter hotels: London's Ampersand HotelTHE AMPERSAND HOTEL
What? Creative city-centre stay
Where? London

There’s something fantastical about the Ampersand, with its whimsical Alice in Wonderland colour schemes; it also serves up one of London’s best afternoon teas – the mini Victoria sponge cakes are to die for. NY-style basement eaterie and cocktail bar Apero mixes a mean aperitif to focus the tastebuds on its tasty Italo-Med sharing platters, and rooms are bright and beautiful. On your well-heeled Kensington doorstep await some of London’s most memorable museums (including the V&A and the Natural History Museum). Should you have completed your cultural quota for the day, there is always time for a little retail therapy: Knightsbridge is minutes away, so you may as well say a little ‘hello’ to Harrods or Harvey Nichols.

Get a room! From £163 a night (when you pay in advance).

Easter hotels: The Scarlet, CornwallTHE SCARLET
What? Rad coastal eco-retreat
Where? Cornwall

The Scarlet’s mood-enhancing eco-design merges indoors and outdoors with large glass windows and walls. Tranquility, wellness and relaxation are all on the cards at this ocean-facing adults-only hotel – did someone say ‘couple’s retreat’? Watch the sun set and sip an apéritif from the round, red log-fired hot tubs that sit atop the cliffs in front of the hotel. In the morning you can start slow at one of the free yoga classes, but by  afternoon you may tempted to take to the seas and get your heart racing either with a wild swim or a surf lesson. Of course you could always continue slow and lie still while you submit to a supercharged spa session…

Get a room! From £265 a night.

Easter riads: Marrakech hotel, Dar Les CigognesDAR LES CIGOGNES
What? Gourmet-loving getaway
Where? Marrakech

With celebrity architect Charles Boccara on board, the owners have put two riads together to create a Moorish masterpiece. Jetsetters now flock to the boutique hotel, not just to admire the meticulous renovations but to delight in the outstanding home-prepared cuisine on offer. The hotel has recently published its own cookbook, and they have an on-site cookery school where chefs impart their top tips with guests. The menu changes daily, depending on what’s available at the market. Make melt-in-the-mouth memories with slow-cooked spicy chicken tagine and fluffy, flavour-infused couscous, or buy the cookbook and emulate your experience back on home turf.

Get a room! From £147 a night

Easter hotels: Church Street Townhouse, Stratford-upon-AvonTHE CHURCH STREET TOWNHOUSE
What? Historic playzone
Where? Stratford-upon-Avon

Take a step back in time and stay in this lovingly restored grade II-listed townhouse at the heart of bard-boasting Stratford-upon-Avon. But don’t be fooled: this is no olde-worlde time-warp – the mood’s more member’s club than creaky floorboards. Soak up the Shakespearean offerings with a trip to the theatre and peek in on the playwright’s birthplace on Henley Street. Back at your converted coaching inn, find a cosy spot to curl up in, tuck into relaxed gastro-fare and hearty breakfasts from chef Richard Hancox, or prop up the lively bar with the devoted local crowd.

Get a room! From £130 a night

Easter hotels: Ca's Xorc, MallorcaCA’S XORC
What? Sun-blessed hilltop bolthole
Where? Mallorca

Set in the stunning Sollér Valley, this 18th-century Mallorquin farmhouse is surrounded by olive groves and lemon trees. At the end of the garden path, you’ll find the hotel’s infinity pool: dive in and you’ll feel as though you’re swimming off the hillside and into the blue. Amble from bench to bench between the overflowing flowerbeds, or seek out a secluded spot between the trees where you can dine al fresco at romantic wrought-iron tables. Fresh Mediterranean dishes are enhanced by the delicious olive oil produced on the farm – staff will proudly explain the entire process to you.

Get a room! From £213 a night.

Find hotels with Easter availability, or browse the Smith hotels collection for more long-weekend ideas…

*Copy compiled by Georgina Conroy

 



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Travel gallery: El Fenn hotel in Marrakech

Posted by Rachel Juarez-Carr on March 5th, 2014

We love a Marrakech riad hotel here at Smith, and we were delighted that El Fenn recently provided the first taste of Morocco in our #smithday Instagram takeover project. Each Friday, another of our favourites somewhere on the globe gets the keys to the @smithhotels account and posts a day in the life of their hotel, giving us a glimpse behind the staged press shots and a chance to feel like we’re really there.

Follow us on Instagram to tag along on our photogenic travels; hosting us tomorrow will be a certain regally named hotel in Paris…



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Constance Moofushi hotel in the Maldives

‘Barefoot luxury’ might be becoming a bit of a cliche, but we’re addicted to it nonetheless. And where better to kick of your shoes in sumptuous surroundings than in the Maldives? We’re fickle folk who fall in love anew every time we go there and find our new favourite hotel, but when the hotels in question are as glorious as Constance Moofushi, we just can’t help ourselves.

No 131 hotel in the CotswoldsNext up, we headed west and found ourselves in the desert – Dubai, to be exact, where the dark, sleek style of Armani Hotel lived up to its billing as the UAE’s most exclusive address.

Speaking of addresses, No 131 hotel in Cheltenham (it’s number 131 on the street, obviously) has been wowing half our London office bit by bit recently; they’ve all been coming back to Smith HQ from their country weekends raving about gargantuan scones and soak-of-a-lifetime bathtubs.

Over in the Americas, we set about exploring Cartagena, Colombia, from our temporary home-from-home Casablanca B&B (where mojitos in the rooftop pool are order of the day, every day). Then, we went north to the US, to hang out at the Metropolitan by Como, Miami Beach, where the chic 1920s architecture’s almost as alluring as the seaside setting.

Check back a month from now to see where March’s adventures have taken us…

 



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