England’s largest single estate vineyard is converting its existing farmhouse accommodation into what is being billed as the UK’s first vineyard hotel.
Set on the Denbies Wine estate in the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and with sweeping views across the vineyard and North Downs Way, the new hotel will have 17 en-suite bedrooms (including a bridal suite), an Orangery-style garden restaurant, outdoor dining cabanas so diners can enjoy the view whatever the weather, and its own ‘Enomatic™ wine dispensing machine’ – meaning guests can taste and purchase Denbies wine by the glass.
Hotel guests can take advantage of regular complimentary wine tasting tutorials, 7 miles (11km) of trails through the vineyard, and a ParkRun from the doorstep every Saturday morning. Serious effort has been made to achieve carbon-neutral status and blend the hotel building into its beautiful natural surroundings.
A comprehensive £4m investment drive is underway at Denbies Wine Estate, England’s largest single estate vineyard which, over a three year period will create new employment opportunities.
The investment in 2019 will include a complete modernisation and expansion of the winery. “We will be quadrupling our sparkling wine production capacity by the end of 2019,” commented Christopher White, Denbies CEO. “Moreover, our sustained programme of new plantings, as well as planned winery investments will enable us to expand while continuing to drive the quality of our sparkling wines. We will also make sure that we support growing demand for our full range of still wines, from entry level up to the premium ranges.”
In September 2018, the construction work on England’s first Vineyard Hotel began. The hotel will be located in the middle of the Denbies’ vineyard and offer 17 ensuite rooms with a new restaurant and bar area. This is the first vineyard hotel in the UK and with Denbies’ commitment to establish best practice in green-tourism, the architect has sought to adopt some of the best measures to achieve carbon neutral status, reducing the impact on the environment and blending the hotel building into the natural surroundings of the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and the North Downs.
The Vineyard Hotel will have subtle references to its’ prime location in the heart of the Surrey Hills wine country. Guests will be able to taste the complete range of Denbies wines from the Enomatic wine dispensing machine, linked to the room key cards. Warm natural bark walls will line the reception entrance opening into the wrought iron vine gates leading through into the stunning Orangery with far reaching views over the vineyard. Bespoke barrel crafted furniture will contribute to the origins of the working winery. The vineyard offers 7 miles of public footpath which includes part of the North Downs Trail, Box Hill is located opposite the hotel, making this a perfect destination for those seeking a tranquil stay.
The open landscape garden will feature two cabanna style seating areas where guests will be able to enjoy local cheeses and charcuterie accompanied by the wine made and produced on the estate.
Denbies COO Jeannette Simpson commented: “We have a wonderful site here at Denbies which attracts around 350,000 visitors each year. We have been at the forefront of wine tourism in England since the estate opened and our new hotel, due to in spring 2019, will be a great addition to our existing hospitality offering. The reputation of English wine continues to grow, and wine tourism is an integral part of communicating this message loud and clear. We look forward to offering a world-class vineyard and winery experience here in the heart of the Surrey Hills.”
For more information visit: www.denbies.co.uk. Photos, c. Helen Dixon.
Mark Bibby Jackson
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