Courtyard comforts and the bathroom of dreams in one of the most opulent rooms in the world

Published on: 03 Mar 12 by Blackpool Gazette

After our night's stay in The Sanctuary at The Cranleigh guest house in Bowness-on-Windermere I can honestly say it may be one of the most opulent rooms in the world, let alone Cumbria.

For while many can boast the super king-size bed, huge flat screen televisions, sumptuous bar area and state-of-the-art mod lighting throughout - not many offer a private hot tub in your own personal secluded courtyard.

The Sanctuary succeeds in being exactly what the name suggests, a place to close the door on the outside world and shrug off your woes while surrendering to complete relaxation.

The receptionist showed us to our room in a detached bungalow all on its own, away from the hotel's main premises. When we arrived inside, we indulged in some complimentary Champagne while reading a note wishing us an excellent time during our stay.

The staff member then ran us through the state-of-the-art set-up, showing us how to work the remote controlled gas fire, television and audio system and bathroom lighting, taking the time to make sure we got the most from our stay.

Everything in The Sanctuary has been completed to the highest standard. The feature bathroom is stunning and includes the first Ben de Lisi glass bath ever to be put into a hotel room - an extremely impressive centrepiece for the already breathtaking space.

Mood lighting can be set to any levels and reflect back from the dense black marble tiles. The walk-in shower features a massive head haloed in blue LED lights and set in the centre of the tiled area, making you feel a little like you are showering under your own personal electric storm cloud.

We spent our two-day stay exploring the various shops around Windermere and Bowness, a part of the world we are very familiar with. But even knowing many of the cafes and restaurants in the area, I usually like to have breakfast at the hotel before facing the world and The Cranleigh didn't disappoint with that either. Served in The Sanctuary's breakfasting area, we enjoyed a tantalising mix of cooked breakfast as well as all the jams, toast, fruit, cereals and pastries we could manage. Of course the hotel itself does not just have the one room and could easily claim to be the top destination in town.

The main building is a stunning example of a Lakeland stone building, set back from the main road through Bowness and with public areas which are classically comfortable.

The suites are all first class with the smaller rooms easily vying with any other luxury offerings in the South Lakes. Tariffs change depending on season and can suit most budgets.

Which is what brings me to the hard to swallow part about The Sanctuary, the price. Would I pay up to £400 a night for a Lakeland hotel room which doesn't have views of nearby Lake Windermere? Probably not.

But that's not the point of The Sanctuary. This is rock star luxury and as the old saying goes - it's cheap to those who can afford it but very expensive to those who can't.

Find out more about the Sanctuary here.

Published on 03 Mar 12 by Blackpool Gazette

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