The New Forest National Park must be one of the best places in the UK to spend Christmas; beautiful scenery, long country walks, pretty ponies, cosy pubs with roaring log fires and, best of all, someone else doing all the cooking and washing up.
Here are just a few ideas of New Forest hotels that still have availability this coming festive season…
The Master Builders at Bucklers Hard: 3 nights from £480 pp
The Master Builders Hotel at Buckler’s Hard near Beaulieu has a three-night package available from 24 December from £480 pp (two sharing). On Christmas Day, enjoy a Buck’s Fizz English breakfast after which you have just enough time to go for a walk, or perhaps attend a Christmas service in the local Beaulieu church? Then it’s time for the main event, with Christmas lunch and all the trimmings. In the evening there will be a gala buffet followed by a Christmas quiz. Boxing Day starts off with breakfast, after which the day is free to enjoy at leisure. In the evening, enjoy a pre-dinner cocktail followed by another full a la carte dinner (£30 allocation per person) in either The Riverview Restaurant or The Yachtsman’s Bar. The Master Builders (01590 616 253, masterbuilders.co.uk).
Christmas Spa Break at Carey’s Manor Hotel & SenSpa: 3 nights from £855 pp
Rather than fill the body with toxins over Christmas, enjoy a three-night spa break to Carey’s Manor in Brockenhurst from £855 pp (two sharing). It includes full use of SenSpa’s extensive spa facilities throughout (plus two treatments worth £80 each), welcome afternoon tea on arrival, breakfast each morning, complimentary selected refreshments, choice of two classes and Christmas Eve dinner at one of three restaurants. Christmas Day lunch is at Le Blaireau bar and bistro, Christmas Day dinner is in the Zen Garden Restaurant, and Boxing Day Gala Dinner at Cambium. Guests are also invited to attend a Black Tie Gala Banquet in Cambium on Boxing night with live music, dancing and food. Carey’s Manor (01590 624467, careysmanor.com).
Christmas House Party at Chewton Glen: 3 nights from £1995 pp
Widely regarded as one of the best luxury spa hotels in the UK, Chewton Glen has a three-night break from £1995 pp (two sharing). The price includes breakfast each morning, a family treasure hunt, afternoon tea with mince pies and mulled wine, Champagne Taittinger reception, carols and cabaret dinner with wines on Christmas Eve; Champagne Taittinger pre-lunch reception, Christmas lunch with wines, festive cream tea, Christmas cocktails and canapés, and buffet dinner with wines; on Boxing Day enjoy a guided walk to the beach, lunch in The Dining Room, Pool Bar or Lounge, falconry display, afternoon tea, Champagne, cocktails and canapés, dinner with wines followed by a ‘Strictly’ themed dancing (black tie). Guests leave after breakfast on 27 December.
Chewton Glen (01425 282212, chewtonglen.com)
For other ideas of festive things to do in the New Forest or other places to stay including B&Bs and holiday parks visit www.thenewforest.co.uk.
Mark Bibby Jackson
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