Before we bought our house 1 1/2 years ago, we were frequent travellers. A lot our time is invested in DIY-ing the house these days, which we do enjoy. Work is also keeping us very busy so any free time not DIY-ing, is spent resting at home. Hubby and I agreed a few weeks ago that we’d be happy to spend Valentine’s weekend at home, and that he’d cook me a three course meal. However on Friday morning as we were both getting ready for work, I said to Hubby that it’s a shame we’re not going away, and he agreed. Seeing that our last break was in Fussen in August, we both agreed that a weekend away would do us both good.
I looked up our favourite hotel chain in the UK, Hotel du Vin, and to my surprise, they had a room available for the weekend in Henley-on-Thames. It was a weekend escape rate which included breakfast, and a complimentary bottle of champagne for £150. Clearly we are in the midst of recession as 2 years ago, you wouldn’t have any chance of scoring a package for that rate for neither love nor money on Valentine’s weekend.
I was convinced that we’d be sleeping in a closet, but the free champagne made me book it.
This is what greeted us when we were shown the room.
It was a loft-style room, with plenty of space. (Although our friend Tony would probably say to us ‘get over yourselves, it’s an attic!’)
That’s me trying to check out the view outside the window. I am not particularly tall, but I had to bend my knees and kept bashing my head against the sloping ceiling, although thankfully the beam was padded.
The famous monsoon shower which is a feature in most HdV hotels inspired the shower in our own bathroom.
The complimentary bottle of champagne which went down a treat later that evening…
We had a view of the River Thames, and this is where the annual Henley regatta takes places in the summer.
We checked-in rather late, and as we had a rather early dinner reservation at Loch Fyne, we decided to leave the bottle of bubbly later. Dinner was alright, nothing blog-worthy. I had booked us tickets for a movie at the local cinema which was literally around the corner from the hotel.
Since we had about 2 hours to kill before the movie, we went back to the room to drink the bubbly and watch a DVD I had brought along. Feeling chilled out, I have to say neither of us missed the house in its DIY-state. It was soon time for the movie, and since we had pre-booked tickets, all we had to do was buy some popcorn and drinks before settling into our seats. Never Let Me Go is not a date-movie, but it was extremely sad and thought-provoking which got us talking about it well into the next day.
After a good night’s sleep, Hubby and I ventured into the HdV Bistro for breakfast. Hubby opted for the Full English, while I asked for porridge. However I was told that I could have another course (in addition to the pastries and yogurt) from a choice of French Toast, Kippers, Smoked Salmon and Scrambled eggs. I told our waitress that I was a pseudo (lamb and chicken eating)-vegetarian who doesn’t eat eggs and didn’t really fancy fish that morning. She offered to get me a plate of vegetarian sausages, grilled mushroom and tomato, to which I said aye!
Some toasts and croissants to start with tea and coffee.
A bowl of porridge with maple syrup to follow..
My vegetarian breakfast which the kind waitress made an effort to offer.
After breakfast, we went back to the room to pack and freshen up, and checked out soon after. Unfortunately they had charged someone else’s dinner to our account which slightly ruined the otherwise flawless stay, but they took it off when we pointed it out and were very apologetic.
We dropped out bags in the car and although it was a rather rainy day but we still went for a quick walk.
We left Henley-on-Thames soon after our walk, and headed towards Central London, which only took us an hour. I bought Hubby a voucher for HMV and he wanted to buy some records.
To be continued…..