If nothing else, the view from the neatly trimmed lawns and terrace at Simonstone Hall would be the clincher – a gorgeous Wensleydale panorama from an elevated position just outside the market town of Hawes. But there's plenty more that impresses in this genteel country house hotel, starting with eighteen elegant rooms (some share the views) that exude a genuine country charm. There are no flashy fripperies, it's not that kind of place – instead you can expect period furniture, antiques and curios, maybe even a four-poster in the rooms, along with real china tea cups and saucers. Lounges and log fires for relaxation downstairs? Naturally. And a grand old Yorkshire breakfast is served with splendid views over the dale below. Drinking and dining options mean a trip into Hawes can wait. There's a wood-panelled bar they call the Pub that shouts 'rustic Yorkshire' to the rooftops, with its antique muskets, stuffed fish, hunting pictures and roaring fire. Adjacent is the Brasserie, which goes for an informal menu – fish and chips to Dales lamb – backed up by a range of decent modern European and New World wines available by the glass or bottle. Or it's glad-rags on for the dinner-only Drawing Room restaurant where more subtle contemporary cuisine awaits – say pan-seared scallops with thyme and lemon risotto followed by a fillet of smoked haddock on a clam chowder. It's all thoroughly lovely and relaxing, and at night's end you will have been lulled, chilled, soothed and otherwise spoiled rotten.
Doubles/twins £110–£185, including dinner £180–255 – winter discounts available Nov–April. Brasserie dishes £13.50–£26.50. Restaurant table d'hote menu £55.
Hotel open all year. Brasserie daily noon–2pm & 6pm–9pm. Restaurant daily 7pm–9pm.
Simonstone Hall, Hawes DL8 3LY
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