If you are passionate about literature then Nutfield Priory in Surrey is the perfect retreat.
Inspired by the Neo-Gothic splendour of the Place of Westminster, Nutfield Priory is a country house hotel and spa with 60 bedrooms, 15 of which are themed around a great literary figure.
The six Junior Suites include Austen, Milne, Huxley, Orwell, Keats and Bronte, and all are located in the main house, which dates back to 1872, and overlook the stunning courtyard. While all of the suites are spacious and elegant and feature beautiful, modern bathrooms, each one is defined by its unique style of furnishings.
Like its namesake’s novels, the Austen suite offers the perfect romantic setting with lots of Victorian features and an oversized Cherrywood sleigh bed, while the Bronte suite is a wonderful retreat for aspiring authors, with an abundance of natural light flooding in through the large original windows and a hand-carved wooden four-poster bed.
The remaining nine feature bedrooms are the Master Suites, and include Hardy, Swift, Kipling, Wandsworth, Tennyson, Tolkien, Eliot, Shelly and Bryon. If you are looking for the ultimate getaway for you and your loved one, then the Byron suite located in the west tower, is text book – if you will excuse the pun. Split over two levels and accessed by a winding staircase, it offers a dressing and living area, Victorian roll top bath and far-reaching views of the Surrey and Sussex countryside.
Like its famous namesake, the Tolkien is a little more epic than the other rooms, making it a generous space for families or for a bride and her bridesmaids to prepare on her special day. The most popular suite is the Tennyson, located in the eves. Featuring vaulted ceilings and wooden beams it is just the thing for cosy winter nights, but with a large, decked balcony terrace it is also ideal during those balmy summer nights.
In keeping with the literary theme, the house still retains one of its original state rooms, the library, which has been lovingly restored and up until 1987, when Nutfield Priory opened as a hotel, it was the first Secondary Modern Boarding School for severely deaf children. Prior to that, during the mid-1800s it was used to host the “Festival of Ragged School Teachers”, which allowed teachers from east London schools to dine at the house and enjoy the gardens and grounds.