Tuesday, 15 December 2015

The Francis Hotel, Bath - Review

Recently my husband and I went to Bath to visit the Christmas market and soak up the atmosphere. Bath is one of my favourite cities ever. The mix of history, gorgeous architecture and shopping makes it, in my opinion, a great city to visit.

My husband knows how I love Christmas markets. Last year we went to Berlin and the year before Prague but this year we decided to stay close to home as we have a couple of big holidays next year, and to be honest we couldn't afford a short European break and the spending money that goes with it. So Bath it was, and I wasn't disappointed. 


Bath Abbey

I thought we were just going for the day but he surprised me with an overnight stay at The Francis Hotel, right in the centre of Bath.

We got to the hotel around 10am. We knew we couldn't check in yet but as the Christmas market gets very busy we thought we would get there as soon as it opens. 

When we arrived at the hotel we didn't know where to park but as we stopped outside the concierge, an older gentleman, came out and was most helpful. He said that we could unload here, as it was a Sunday and although he thought there was no parking space available yet he would double check to see. As we unloaded he tagged our bags and I went to see if I could fill in the registration details at reception. As I was doing so the concierge pointed out that a space had become available in the car park and my husband went to park. What great service! 
Copyright The Francis Hotel

The hotel certainly has the WOW factor. The reception area is small but really lovely and you can see into the two lounges. On their website they say it is "Regency Rediscovered" and I can see why. This grade 1 listed building which originally opened as a hotel in 1858 has undergone many transformations, especially after being bombed in World War 2. In 2012 after a 6 million pound renovation project it changed into The Francis Hotel. Seven of the original townhouses have now made it into a luxury boutique hotel which is both modern yet traditional in its style and service. 



Walls are traditional regency colours but also mixed with stunning wallpaper adorned with birds and silhouettes. 



The room wasn't ready so they took our details and stored our luggage for later.

We then headed straight out for the Christmas market a five minute walk away where we enjoyed the atmosphere and later in the afternoon had a cheeky glass of mulled wine from one of the stalls. The Christmas market was very busy as it was a Sunday. I would recommend visiting on a day in the week if you could. Bath has some great shops so we also did some shopping and had lunch before heading back to the hotel for 2pm.

When we returned our room was ready.


The room was a decent size, not big but perfectly formed. The room was very stylish in the Regency style but with modern facilities such as a coffee maker, flat screen tv and fridge with fresh milk. How often do you see that in a hotel these days?

The bathroom was decorated in black and white with a feature wall of a scene from the Roman Baths just down the road.





The bed was very comfy but it was the finishing touches impressed me, like the gorgeous antique style phone the ornate gilt mirror and the painting on the ceiling - yes you heard that correctly! You could look up in bed and admire a country view.
It's the little touches that make this a cool hotel like the painting on the ceiling, the ornate mirror and antique style phone

Later that night we had a drink in one of the two lounges below.


Again, beautifully designed, the lounge was very relaxing and stylish. You can have afternoon tea in the lounge and I can imagine it would be lovely. My husband decided on a cocktail and I had a coffee  Prices were on the steep side but we enjoyed them, the cocktail especially was well made. We then headed off to Brasserie Blanc next door for our dinner that night.


Stunning wallpaper adorn the walls

The next morning breakfast was served in the John Wood room. The selection of food was wide and varied, pastries, fresh fruit, cereals, yoghurts, fresh juice ( not concentrate), smoothies and much more. A menu gave you a choice of cooked to order food included in the price and you could choose from about 10 offerings including porridge, pancakes and bacon, scrambled eggs and smoked salmon, omelettes and a full cooked breakfast. Everything was excellent quality and they use locally sourced food wherever possible. Staff were cheerful and helpful. We were impressed. 

Would I stay here again? It is not a perfect hotel - the lift for example is small and the reception area takes a while to deal with the people checking out and checking in.  It also doesn't have a gym or spa for example BUT....I have stayed in hotels all around the world and there was something charming about this hotel that I really loved. The architecture, great service and location really cannot be beaten in Bath, and although it's not cheap, it's not ridiculously priced either. If you have a chance to stay in Bath I urge you to stay at The Francis Hotel. You will not be disappointed. 
SHARE:

20 comments

  1. Wow! What a lovely hotel! It looks very grand! Bath is a wonderful place to visit, I'd love to go again.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is grand Emily but modern and certainly not stuffy :)

      Delete
  2. This places looks absolutely beautiful! I love hotels that have a modern theme to them

    ReplyDelete
  3. What a awesome hotel to stay in, we go to Bath when my son runs, would love to stay here.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Does he do the half marathon there Sharon? I have been there where the race was on.

      Delete
  4. Wow this hotel looks lovely. So traditional but also modern if that makes sense. Glad you enjoyed it x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, Kerry, that is what I was trying to get across in my review - it makes perfect sense.

      Delete
  5. Gorgeous hotel - LOVE that old-style phone, so pretty! :)

    ReplyDelete
  6. Such a fantastic venue! My husband was born in Bath - I'd like to visit there one day.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You should visit. It is such a beautiful city, I love it there.

      Delete
  7. I love the little details and the architecture of the building it looks beautiful x

    Miss Kitty Kaos - Adventures Of A Riot Grrrl

    ReplyDelete
  8. I love Bath, it is such a stunning city with so much to see and do.

    ReplyDelete
  9. It looks really really nice. I do think a coffee machine and fresh milk is essential, I need coffee to start my day and do not want to wait to I go down to breakfast. Bath is on our list of places to visit, we were going to Air B'n'B, but I could be tempted by the hotel.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Most places I have stayed in don't have fresh milk, so this little touch really does make a difference.

      Delete
  10. This looks very grand. And I really like that bed and the striped wallpaper

    ReplyDelete
  11. I love bath, it's such a beautiful city isn't it. The town I live in drew inspiration from the white washed walls of bath when it was designed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Bath is a gorgeous city, I visit every year.

      Delete
  12. We went to Bath earlier this year, and loved it - such a beautiful city. This hotel looks amazing - lovely review. Kaz x

    ReplyDelete
  13. I totally agree wit this lovely review - we love this hotel and stayed in it two years ago - perfect location and stylish interior makes it a fantastic city break. So glad you had a good time

    Laura x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I didn't see this comment. Yes it is an amazing hotel Laura. I was so lucky that my husband paid for it for us. :)

      Delete

© The Diary Of A Jewellery Lover. All rights reserved.
Blogger templates by pipdig