The Vicarage is a grade II listed farmhouse that combines English country heritage and historic character with the subtle, laid back comfort and service of a modern hotel.
Sometimes on your travels accommodation is about so much more than just getting yourself a bed for the night, it is about the experience. It is about immersing yourself into the unique culture and mindset of the place you are visiting, to really get a taste of what your destination has to offer.
And this is what the Vicarage does best.
For travellers to the UK looking for an authentic glimpse of the British countryside, or those on a weekend staycation looking for a comfortable country retreat, this refurbished, 17th Century Grade II listed country farmhouse meets all your needs and then blows them away.
Located in the middle of the Cheshire countryside you are far away from things enough to be surrounded by fields and farmland for a bit of an escape, but are close enough to the cities of Chester, Liverpool and Manchester, as well as major attractions such as Chester Zoo.
The main downstairs area has a bar, restaurant, games room and library area and all ooze character and charm, with decor that reflects both the farmhouse’s history and the English country heritage that you would expect. Shabby chic furniture in the conservatory breakfast room blends seamlessly with the reclamation yard decor and bric a brac of the pub and restaurant, and makes the Vicarage a truly distinctive accommodation option.
The rooms themselves are all slightly different, each one being individually designed and refurbished to a high standard that reflects the pub’s heritage and character but still gives you the comfort and amenities of a modern hotel. The beds are huge and extremely comfortable, to the point that I literally dozed off for an unplanned nap 5 minutes after I dropped my bag and the bathrooms are huge and pretty swanky with power showers and a bath. The obligatory flatscreen TV and fancy coffee machine no one ever really knows how to use are all there, but I was surprised that there was no little fridge anywhere. Fresh milk for your tea is of course available on request but it would be nice to have a small fridge to keep it in.
The only real criticism I can give of the room I had is that it faces the main road that the pub is only just set back from, and when the traffic gets heavy it can get noticeable. Especially if you want the window open on a muggy night. But then no one can really do anything about the placement of a road and it did not impact on my nights sleep at all.
Being a traditional English bed and breakfast, I would be remiss by not talking about the food too. There was a wide choice of breakfast options with fresh juice, tea and coffee as you would expect, and the quality of the food is outstanding. The Vicarage pride themselves – as they should – on sourcing all of their food locally, with produce coming from the farms in the surrounding countryside of Cheshire and neighboring Wales, so you do genuinely get a taste of the good old British countryside when you stay here.
If you get a chance you should also try out the restaurant of an evening, the menu is purposely limited to mostly traditional British fare and is executed to gourmet standards. You will be in absolute foodie heaven here and I loved the fact that the menu catered for vegetarians and those with other needs such as gluten free just as much as anyone else, and did so subtly and without fuss.
The service throughout is impeccable and seamless and I genuinely cannot praise them enough for this. All were friendly and professional and made my stay just that little bit more special.
The Vicarage is genuinely great value for money by UK standards for those who are on a flashpackers budget or backpackers who want to upgrade to a bit of luxury for a few nights. At this price point your other options are bland chain budget hotels, and the boutique charm and heritage style luxury of the Vicarage gives you so much more for your money.
I genuinely enjoyed my stay at the Vicarage and wholeheartedly recommend it to anyone visiting the UK from abroad or simply wanting a weekend staycation.
Ready to book? The Vicarage Free House and Hotel website can be found here.
This article was written in partnership with The Vicarage. The views and opinions expressed are entirely the authors own based on personal experiences when travelling and are honest and factual without any bias.