Rockliffe Hall has already put itself firmly on the map thanks to its world class Spa. It is now establishing itself as one of the UK’s top wedding venues. We visited to find out a little more and we were very, very impressed. We challenge you to stay for the weekend and not fall in love with this hotel.
Rockliffe Hall is a 5 Star Hotel with a spa, restaurant and golf club in 375 acres of parkland on the North Yorkshire and County Durham border. It is just over 2 hours by train from London, with a luxury car transfer available to take you for the few minutes drive from Darlington station to the hotel.
The hotel’s spa has the perfect mix of relaxation areas, retail therapy, hydrotherapy and pampering. The “wet area” is split into two sections; a large lap pool with sun loungers and a sauna, and a smaller hydrotherapy pool with a selection of jets, fountains and bubbles. Enjoy a brief relaxing dip or boost your circulation and immune system with a spa journey through the tepidarium, caldarium, tropicarium, hydropool, ice fountain and foot baths.
As you would expect with a spa such as Rockliffe Hall’s, the treatment menu is extensive and has a holistic tilt. Treatment rooms are serene, the staff are totally professional, and the entire experience is nothing short of heavenly.
Those who have come purely for relaxation may be surprised to find themselves being tempted into the gym where there is an inspiring programme of exercise classes from “cardio combat” to “boogie bounce”, and friendly, approachable personal trainers who are on hand to assist and motivate you on the state of the art fitness equipment.
Above the Spa – and close enough to get there in your robe and slippers – is the Brasserie; a relaxed restaurant and bar serving delicious fresh dishes both in the restaurant and on the terrace overlooking the gardens and golf course.
A large outdoor extension to the spa will be completed in September 2015 with an outside pool, hot tub, bar, relaxation area and stunning views across the grounds. It will feature heated flooring and a fire pit for year round enjoyment.
Choose from 61 luxurious rooms in the main hotel. Those in the New Hall have a contemporary style, spacious bathrooms and a balcony or patio. The rooms in the Old Hall, including the two bridal suites, have a more sumptuous, traditional and elegant feel. For added flexibility the hotel also has a choice of lodges and apartments within the hotel grounds where guests can book a single room or take over the entire building. All of the rooms and suites have all the amenities you would hope for, including TVs in the bathrooms. The junior suites can accommodate an extra person on the sofa and even the twin rooms have two double beds.
The hotel offers various tempting dining options; the relaxed Brasserie above the spa, afternoon tea on the patio or in the drawing room, casual suppers in the golf Clubhouse, but without doubt the jewel in the crown is the Orangery.
Head Chef Richard Allen, who must be heading towards a Michelin Star, offers several menu options including A la Carte, 7 course vegetarian, carnivorous or pescatorian selections or a 9 course tasting menu which comes with a flight of 9 wines. We couldn’t resist the 9 course option and were treated to delights such as carpaccio of beef with haggis followed by lobster with pickled peach, avocado, mozzarella and caviar, a cheese course with delicate morcels of cheese, truffle and a deconstructed waldorf salad, and to delight those with a sweet tooth; two desserts followed by delicate handmade petit fours and coffee.
Getting Married at Rockliffe
The hotel building has two distinct styles; the traditional Old Hall in a listed building with beautiful original arches, stained glass, huge stone fireplaces and an Orangery. The New Hall has a more modern contemporary feel and incorporates the extensive Spa area and Brasserie as well as a modern event suite.
Most couples opt to get married in the light, airy Orangery, the elegant Morning Room or under the traditional Old Hall Arches, followed by drinks on the patio, in the Drawing Room or in the Old Hall.
For the wedding breakfast and evening reception the Rockliffe Suite in the New Hall has been purpose built with its own gardens, private entrance, kitchen, private bar and late licence. For guests keen to keep the party going into the small hours, the hotel’s cocktail bar is happy to stay open until your last guest retires.
For smaller groups the Orangery offers the ultimate dining experience for your wedding guests and exclusive use is available on Sundays and Mondays, or other nights by special arrangement.
While we were visiting Rockliffe, we were lucky enough to witness this beautiful proposal!
There is nothing not to love at Rockliffe; the bedrooms, grounds, spa and restaurants are all exceptional, but what really stood out to us was how much the staff enjoy being there. Their relaxed, happy and professional manner sets the perfect tone for a happy and relaxed stay.
Contact Becci Still on 01325 729999 to book an appointment to visit.
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