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De Vere Latimer Estate, Chesham, The Chilterns
This country hotel occupies a dazzlingly grand redbrick manor house built in the 19th century, as well as some more recent - and more ordinary - extensions. Its spectacular exterior generates a lot of wedding bookings, but other guests won't feel sidelined by the friendly staff. De Vere Latimer Estate was given a £7 million makeover in 2017, adding a more contemporary finish to the lovely communal spaces. Hang out at the orangery-style glass-ceiled restaurant or the cosy library serving afternoon teas; in the decent-sized indoor pool or on the vast, manicured lawn scattered with outdoor games including giant chess. Couples will want one of the upscale bedrooms in the main house, which are decorated in a subdued pastoral palette of greens and greys, but families are well-served, too.
You'll love being able to strike out on a hike without first getting into the car - the hotel is on the 10-mile Chess Valley Walk.
The hotel is in a peaceful rural setting, but within easy reach of London with Chalfont & Latimer tube station five minutes' drive away.
By car: around an hour's drive from central London and 1 hour 10 minutes' drive from Oxford. Free public parking.
By train: the hotel is around 1 hour from Euston Square on the tube. thetrainline.com
Style & Character
Perfect for couples or families celebrating a special occasion - De Vere is smart, but relaxed enough that it can be enjoyed by people travelling with energetic children. We love the wooden staircase in the manor house, overlooked by an ornate ceiling and original stained-glass windows - perfect for a glamorous photo-opp on your way down to dinner.
Service & Facilities
The chatty, friendly servers in the restaurant will make everyone in your party feel like a special guest - especially the children. Dogs are welcome, and owners can even eat with their pet in the Library bar. Canine guests get their own bed, bowl and treats for £30 per dog per stay - and there are plenty of walks nearby.
- Swimming pool
- Fitness centre
- Free parking
- Free Wi-Fi
The Deluxe Rooms in the historic mansion house are well worth paying extra for, with more space and superior styling. We love the details, such as the William Morris-style ceramic mugs in the teamaking set, and the repro Bakelite phone on the bedside table.
Guest Room Mews, Guest Room Waterhouse, Superior Room, Deluxe Room, Suites
Facilities include: ensuite bath or shower, hairdryer, tea and coffee facilities, TV, free Wi-Fi
Food & Drink
The Library, its shelves lined with vintage books like Debrett's Peerage, is an inviting spot to nurse a glass of wine. Dishes at 1858 riff on the hotel's historic pedigree, from a posh prawn cocktail starter to a delightful roasted duck main.
1838 Restaurant and Bar: seasonal dining, classic dishes include Casterbridge sirloin steak and smoked wood pigeon. Open daily for breakfast and dinner.
The Huntley: afternoon tea, cocktails, aperitifs and night caps. Open daily.