Just outside the city walls on busy Clifton, I can make the walk to the city centre in less than 10 minutes. Rail users would be best advised to get a taxi from the station. Anyone arriving by car will be delighted to find that rare York commodity, free parking though it is small and can get stretched to capacity when an event is taking place in the hotel.
Mrs Cassel has been the fundamental creative force in designing and decorating the 36 rooms. Each has its own unique flavour with the rooms I’ve seen well sized, covered in a variety of rich wall papers and deftly scattered period furnishings. All the usual gadgets and gizmos are here, including free WiFi and safe, though some of the Premier rooms go further with TVs at the end of the bath and separate walk-in showers. Those looking to treat loved ones might consider one of the Four-poster bedrooms. There are six ground floor bedrooms for guests with mobility problems, but tall people like me may find the rooms at the top of the building give some bumped heads from the sloping ceiling. Finally, dog owners can rejoice that their dutifully behaved pooches are welcome to join them with advance notice.
A bright and airy drawing room and slightly more darkened morning room are both rich in period decoration and finishes with some seriously deep and comfy sofas, large gilt edged portraitures and original fireplaces, which when lit are an added joy. When not being used for civil wedding ceremonies, there’s also a handsome guest library. Look out too for the affectionate mural on the grand staircase.
Eating and drinking
The two well regarded dining options both offer different experiences. The ground floor Ivy Brasserie adopts a Parisian theme with decorative reminders about the hotels racing connection and offers a more formal dining choice with a choice of menu classics with some creative twists. The brick vaulted ceilings and leather booths of the basement is a different proposition and is where the New York Grill serves up a more relaxed environment with a menu very much dedicated to the simply prepared bovine. Pre or post dinner, there’s a bar area decorated in contemporary art works.
More about relaxation than exertion, all rooms come fully equipped with TV’s, WiFi, hair dryer and mini bar.
A study in quiet, refined Regency elegance, staff are far from stuffy, very approachable with some coming with a good deal of humour.
Who stays there
In general attracting a slightly older crowd, couples on romantic breaks, with weddings and events also playing a big part in the calendar. Families with older children probably wouldn’t feel out of place either.
Breakfast is included in the price and as is the custom in York the best rates can be had between Sunday and Thursday. Look out too for special inclusive dinner, bed & breakfast deals.
- High-Speed Internet
- Pets Allowed
- Room Service
- Business travellers
- Mature travellers
- Special occasions
- Design and architecture
Pros & Cons
- Quite suave
- Two good eating choices
- No lift
- Some street noise in front facing rooms