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Hand and Spear, Weybridge, Surrey
A stylish makeover has transformed this 1830s Young's pub into a top-notch boutique hotel - the retro artefacts, plant-filled terrariums and Secret Garden wallpaper paying homage to its Victorian roots. Guests are welcomed with vintage port and rocky road, handmade by the chef each morning - a nice touch. Victoriana spills over into the bar and restaurant too, with fringed bell-shaped lampshades, book-filled shelves and fascinating memorabilia to browse. There's a buzzy vibe, particularly on Saturday nights when live music is played. Built as a summer house for Lord King, Baron of Ockham, the building became a hotel when the railway was built, and author Robert Louis Stevenson stayed here in 1882 while working on Treasure Island.
Nearby is Brooklands Motor Museum, site of the world's first purpose-built race track, with Concorde and vintage vehicles on display, while Mercedes-Benz World offers thrilling driving experiences.
Weybridge is a pretty traditional town with the River Wey running through it and the Surrey countryside to the west and south.
By car: just over 1 hour from London or Brighton and around 2 hours from Birmingham and Bristol. There is free parking on-site.
By train: Weybridge is on a direct line from London Waterloo, the journey takes 40 minutes. The hotel is a two-minute walk from Weybridge station. thetrainline.com
Style & Character
The Hand and Spear is great for singles, couples and business people. We love the attention to detail - from the hairdryer hanging in an attractive linen bag to the wicker hamper containing tea and coffee.
Service & Facilities
We love the cosiness of the bar, the book-filled shelves in the library and memorabilia in the parlour making it feel like we are staying in a country house.
- Free parking
- Free Wi-Fi
Sash windows on three sides offer fabulous views, and we love the freestanding copper bath and matching sink. Room 12, accessed by steep steps and tucked away in the tower, looking out over the tree tops, is bliss.
Twin Room, Double Room
Facilities include: ensuite bathroom, TV with Sky, complimentary Wi-Fi, writing desk, salon quality hair dryer, laptop-sized safe, Nespresso coffee machine, complimentary glass of vintage port
Food & Drink
Go for the homemade yoghurt and avocado Eggs Benedict with tongue-tingling harissa at breakfast. Smoked haddock with poached egg and an absolutely delicious mustard sauce also had us coming back for more.
The restaurant: relaxed, hearty, healthy gastro pub food, seasonal ingredients. Open for breakfast lunch and dinner. Dinner mains from £13.