Glass embraces Rutland’s beautiful greenery at The Barnsdale

NEEDING to escape for a weekend getaway? Look no further than The Barnsdale.

Having opened on the 1st of May 2023 after a series of refurbishments, The Barnsdale is an incredible asset to The Signet Collection’s impressive roster of hotels. Founded in 2020 by Hector Ross, The Signet Collection prides itself on its authenticity, unrivalled hospitality and historical charm.

Managing other reputable hotels such as The Mitre and The Retreat, it’s clear that Ross has an eye for beautiful, timeless properties.

The Barnsdale

Surrounded by Rutland’s endless vibrant fields, The Barnsdale is a chic centuries-old former hunting lodge turned boutique hotel. Featuring 46 rooms – including a collection of two and three-bed Scandi-style self-catering accommodation options – the hotel embraces a cosy, playful aesthetic.

The walls across communal spaces are patterned with hand-painted flowers, and cascading curtains form soft silhouettes against the Spring sunshine.

Interior of The Barnsdale

Meanwhile, mahogany drawers and plush pastel pillows demonstrate The Barnsdale’s interest in delicate minutiae. As I enter my room, I’m particularly impressed by the views. Ever-expansive blue skies meet pleasant green pastures with herds of peaceful cattle – a quintessential English countryside landscape.

The hotel is located in the UK’s smallest county and offers complete country living. But don’t let The Barnsdale’s quiet location deceive you. There is still ample choice for various family activities and escapades.

For example, the nation’s largest manmade reservoir, Rutland Water, is a mere 10-minute walk away. Offering breathtaking sights and watersport activities during the summer, it’s the ideal spot for an afternoon stroll. Similarly, seven miles away in Uppingham, visitors can browse local shops for unique art and antique pieces. Rockingham Castle and Deene Park are also only a 25-minute drive and offer fun for the whole family.

Dining at The Barnsdale

However, for those wanting to stay even closer to home at The Barnsdale, the hotel hosts a myriad of its own engaging workshops. From cocktail-making with Frederick Taylor – The Signet Collection’s Head Sommelier – to weekly live music in the hotel’s inner courtyard, The Barnsdale has it covered.

In particular, for those with a more arty side, Nicola Watters’ watercolour painting classes can’t be recommended enough. As Watters takes us on a flower-orientated creative journey, it’s evident that the artist truly cares for the community and her craft. Implicit shapes and soft colours create delicate outlines of daffodils, tulips and other Springtime flora.

If, instead, one wants to unwind and relax over a delicious meal, The Barnsdale’s 1760 Brasserie is the place to be. Literature cognoscenti and food lovers will rejoice upon viewing the menu and spotting an Oscar Wilde quote encouraging a fruitful dining experience – a sentiment perhaps supported by the appearance of a Hemingway Daiquiri.

Dining at The Barnsdale

Having browsed the Brasserie’s many options, I opt for a cauliflower popcorn starter – a signature dish across all three of The Signet Collection’s hotels. Paired with chilli, spring onion and a sharp teriyaki dressing, it’s an immediate favourite.

Guided by the staff’s expertise, I then chose a chicken milanese for my main. Adorned with golden breadcrumbs and tangy parmesan, 1760 – with Mark Jarvis’ culinary direction – has perfected the Italian dish. With a plant-based menu for any vegetarian visitors and ample private dining space, the brasserie is a magnificent dining spot for local residents and hotel guests alike.

Food at The Barnsdale

Later this year, The Barnsdale will also be opening its very own Signet Spa, which will boast an indoor pool, mud rasul, salt flotation room, steam room, sauna and various treatment rooms. Located just outside The Barnsdale’s sparkling events barn, the spa is certain to revitalise all its guests.

Demonstrating the best of what British hospitality has to offer, The Barnsdale’s soulful, cheery atmosphere makes it a delightful location for a UK staycation.

by Sophie Richardson

For more information and to book, please visit here. Room prices start at £120 per night based on two people sharing a double room on a B&B basis.