On Saturday, James and I left the children with my parents and disappeared to Surrey for the night. We were invited to review a gorgeous hotel, the Talbot; full of history and original features. Upon arrival, we were directed to our room, which was the Shrewsbury – one of nine bedrooms situated in the 15th Century coaching inn. For any Tudor geek (hello), the room was a treat. It creaked and gurgled a little, which only added to the charm. An authentic Tudor bedroom!
We had dinner booked in for 6:30 so headed down to the restaurant, which is also situated in the old coaching inn. We had terrines (salmon and ham) and wine to start, pork belly and steak for mains and sticky toffee pudding and chocolate mousse for dessert.
The food was lovely, full of flavour and really nicely presented. The pork belly, in particular, was delicious. The restaurant was a little dark for my liking but gorgeously decorated.
Alongside the modern restaurant is a traditional 15th century bar, which is a real piece of history. Cosy and welcoming with roaring fire and period features aplenty, it offers a wholly different atmosphere to the dining area.
Following our meal and tour of the hotel, we took a stroll down Ripley high street before heading back to our room which, despite its medieval appearance, catered for all of our 21st century desires. We plugged in our phones, made coffee and found a film to watch on TV before drifting off to sleep.
The following morning, we were treated to a lovely breakfast in the hotel restaurant. There were numerous buffet options alongside a menu of cooked items that could be ordered.
I love the variety a continental breakfast brings and contemplated all of the cereals, fruits, meats, cheeses and conserves before deciding on a pastry.
I would have stopped there but, as you can see, the weather was not great – cold, pouring rain, dark – so a hot breakfast was definitely warranted too!
After breakfast, we had to head back to Sussex to collect the children so it really was a brief pit stop, but a truly memorably experience nonetheless. The Talbot is stunning to look at, steeped in history and yet incredibly versatile. As well as the ancient coaching inn, a further 34 bedrooms are situated in the contemporary Ripley Wing, meaning there are rooms to suit everyone. Whilst a room in the coaching inn is perfect for couples, the newer rooms are ideal for families and, being just a short drive from London, commuters. Additionally, the Wisley Suite can accommodate up to 100 guests for a wedding to remember.
We were very impressed with the knowledgeable, attentive staff during our stay and would like to thank them for hosting us. We brought with us a wedding brochure when we left so, you never know, we may well be back in touch soon!
We received dinner, bed and breakfast free of charge for the purposes of this review; all words are our own. The Talbot has rooms available daily from £62 per night (room only) based on two people sharing.