“This hotel brings a touch of metropolitan-cool to an area of the country better known for rather bijou, rather hearty or rather grand country-house hotels. The Lake District is, indeed, a lovely and rightly popular area of England, but, until The Waterhead opened in 2004, it didn’t have many hotels aimed at people who want a smart, city-bolthole type of place for a relaxing weekend break. As it sits in a plum position overlooking the head of Windermere (hence the name), it adds glorious views, too.
Inside the traditional Lakeland-slate building you’ll find light, airy spaces of sleek wood floors, battered leather sofas, striking chandeliers and a background of cool electronic music. Striking local photography and bold abstract artworks add a sense of place. Bag a room with a lake-view, although all rooms are generous in size and have the same quality style and fittings with soft carpets, super-king beds, white walls and pops of colour in lilac or coppery-gold. The top rooms offer a complimentary local-distilled gin - and you’ll find over 40 more gins in the bar, as well as craft beers.
The bright and stylish restaurant offers a smart, bistro-style menu while the outdoor pizza oven is popular at lunchtimes. If it’s sunny, eat outside on the grassy terrace with views over the lake.
Ambleside is a pleasant 15-minute stroll, lake cruises are on your doorstep, there’s free access to a nearby hotel leisure centre or just relax over a glass of wine. A stylish bolthole.”
Written by Helen Pickles