The Hunstman of Brockenhurst: our favourite hotel stay this year.
And, for good reason too, this quick guide to the Hunstman of Brockenhurst should tell you everything you need to know and why we loved it so much should you be heading down to the New Forest anytime soon.And hey, what with the rise of the staycation in 2018, maybe you should! Fabulous decor, amazing staff, brilliant restaurant and a location to die for, it’s a hotel that you simply have to try at some point soon, I mean, it was so good it made us ignore Airbnb for a while in order to find more places like it!
Normally it’s a given that you go to a nice hotel and you get good customer service, but we’ve come to realise that that isn’t necessarily the case. HOWEVER, it was exceptional from start to end at the Huntsman, so what a place to start.
The location of the hotel is amazing, you’re not far from the station if you’ve come by public transport, and if you’ve driven they have free on-site parking too. You’re within walking distance of shops, restaurants and pubs, and more importantly you back on to the New Forest, so those walks you have planned…can actually be a reality.
The room itself was wonderful, stylish, small but sleek – it had everything you could want and need. It was designed in a way that made you think “yes, I am in the country, and some people round here hunt game, but also I am a millennial and it’s really up-to-date and fashionable”. It really did inject that little bit of fun into what could have been a drab and dreary hotel in the country, and in fact, had this been somewhere more urban, it would be the unaffordable hipster hotspot.
For Jess, the bathroom is the most important part of any visit. Seriously, be that hotel stay, Airbnb stay, museum or day out, she’s one of those people picky about where she pees. The bathrooms here were a delight: robes to wear, beautiful White Company products to use, and a great clean shower, sink and loo (word on the street is that in some of the other rooms there’s even a bath, so if that’s something you’re desperate for, make sure you ask)! The robes were a highlight, nothing says “I’m lounging and relaxing” more than fresh white bathrobes too.
The room was super dark, which was great in the evening for us. I guess not being in light-polluted London helped too, but the blinds were great and the room was quiet. If you need silence, it’s not a place I’d recommend, but if you’re happy with quiet and easy to sleep then it’s literally perfect! The bed was also amazing, comfy and spacious – obviously we love each other, but who doesn’t enjoy sleeping in a bed where there is actually enough room for two big humans and then some!
I guess the biggest pull of the hotel is the bar/restaurant attached to it. We are not normally the types to stay in and eat at the hotel, but it was listed on tripadvisor as the top restaurant around, so we figured we would give it a go. They looked after us perfectly, the food was amazing, with a real wide variety, and they didn’t judge us for ordering the house wine, which was delicious. We had steak and chips, creamed spinach, dessert, we had starters too, and although not cheap, it was excellent value for money, and real pull for us to visit again in the future! It was busy, but they had let us reserve a table even though we weren’t sure if we were going to eat there, seemingly at no issue to them whatsoever. When we got to dinner it was rammed. They had reserved us a romantic table in the back room (still as comfortable and stylish), and we watched as the amazing clientele – both locals and holidaymakers – tucked into amazing looking food (particularly the pizzas).
We checked out with such ease that it just topped off the brilliance of the customer service, and they even had time for a chat and to give us advice on where to go, park, what to see and how to avoid traffic on the way home!
All in all, it’s not budget but it is exceptional value for money, and worth it even for one night’s getaway to the New Forest, there’s a reason that it’s made one of our favourite hotels of the year! You can read all about our Staycation in the New Forest, and the things we got up to to inspire you here too.