Where to Stay & Eat in University Towns
If you have children at university, or you fancy a city break to a university town, here are some suggestions of hotels and restaurants. Price guides are not included as special offers are often available and up to date information is easily obtained by clicking on the web links.
If you want to stay in a university town, out of term time and on a budget, then look no further than www.universityrooms.co.uk where you can rent college rooms on a B&B basis. Oxford, Cambridge ( try Sidney Sussex College) and 18 other universities are signed up to the scheme, and guest feedback will give you a star rating on which to judge them.
Set in the heart of Aberdeen City Centre, Bauhaus is an urban boutique hotel with an award-winning Japanese restaurant. Opened in November 2009 the hotel provides easy access to the city’s shops, and nightlife.
01224 212 122
Skene House Holburn
Skene House Holburn is located in the heart of the city. It is an all suite Hotel with one, two and three bedroom suites available – for the price of a hotel room.
01224 580 000
Macdonald Pittodrie House
Set in a Highland Estate of over 2400 acres in the mountain shadow of Bennachie. Although some 20 miles from Aberdeen Pittodrie House offers a unique atmosphere which is great for weekend, romantic or family breaks and provides a huge range of outdoor activities.
0844 879 9066
The Marcliffe at Pitfodels
The Marcliffe Hotel and Spa is a five-star hotel set in 11 acres of grounds on the western fringe of Aberdeen 3 miles from the city centre. With 35 rooms and 7 suites, this privately owned hotel is designed as a restful, elegant refuge.
Brasserie at Malmaison
Part of a nationwide group of eccentrically designed boutique hotels, Malmaison formerly The Queen’s Hotel, has been transformed into a stunning luxury hotel. The Brasserie offers modern European cooking and a seasonally changing menu of dishes made from the finest local ingredients
01224 327 370
Named after a local term for herring, Silver Darling built on the flat roof of the old customs house occupies a superb spot at the entrance of Aberdeen harbour. A classic French menu of superbly presented dishes.
01224 576 229
Foyer Restaurant, Crown Street
Housed in a former church, this much-worshipped restaurant is part of a youth opportunities initiative. So not only do you feel good eating here, you’re doing good to. A cheerful, contemporary space that doubles as an art gallery where exhibitions by local artists change every six weeks along with the Modern European menu.
The Adelphi Kitchen
Gastronomic food in a bistro setting, the chef creates dishes from the freshest local produce available – Scottish fayre with a modern twist also specialising in fish. 01224 211414
Anoisy, bustling and fun venue with a pale ‘verde’ frontage and maritime blue walls, this lively place specialises in seafood from near and far, with culinary ideas drawn from the global melting pot.
0871 426 6628
Luxurious boutique B & B accommodation in an excellent location: just 10 minutes walk from Bath City Centre. The stunning bedrooms are all completely individually styled.
01225 314 769
The Queensberry occupies four luxurious town houses built by John Wood in 1772, still boasting many of the original Georgian features. Its situation is an ideal base from which to explore and enjoy all Bath has to offer. All 29 rooms are individually designed and decorated. Its owners have worked for the Savoy and Claridges, and the style, quality and level of service reflect this. Great breakfasts in their Olive Tree restaurant.
01225 447 928
Overlooking the Royal Crescent and 10 minutes walk from the centre, with great period charm the bedrooms are beautifully decorated with huge beds, roll top baths and power showers. A delicious breakfast is served to strains of cello music as the owner is principal cellist with the LSO.
Royal Crescent Hotel
The most impressively located luxury hotel in City of Bath. Located in two Georgian nationally-protected houses of Bath’s famous Royal Crescent, overlooking the botanical gardens.
01225 823 333
Macdonald Bath Spa Hotel
A delightful Georgian mansion set amidst seven acres of pretty landscaped grounds, just a short walk from the city. The bedrooms maintain the atmosphere and appearance of a private house.
0844 879 9106
Francis Hotel, Queen Square
A large hotel with great location and the bonus of 24 hour parking at a relatively cheap rate. Attractive rooms and friendly staff. Make sure you get one of the modernised rooms.
Popular for graduation bookings – great city position. 24 hour parking is expensive but convenient.
Jamie’s Italian, Milsom Place
Mixed comments about this restaurant , which serves simple rustic food. For lunch its best to go very early or very late as it gets busy and you cant book unless you are a party of 8 or more.
Serving very good authentic Italian food and a sister to the Bristol Aqua, they also offer an excellent “classico” fixed price menu. Near to Walcot Reclamation which is a fascinating place to browse.
Fishworks, Green Street
In the centre of Bath this is now a successful group of 4 restaurants, which have won several awards. You can buy fish to take away, or select the fish you would like cooked. It has a pretty Mediterranean feel restaurant and you can dine alfresco. And they have a cookery school.
0207 470 2462
Hotel du Vin & Bistro
The ornate, early Victorian building in the old city centre was sympathetically converted around the central courtyard, retaining many orginal features including the magnificent sweeping staircase and granite pillars..City Centre location close to shopping, financial district and jewellery quarter.
0121 200 0600
Hotel Indigo, The Cube
The hotel opened in December 2011 in an amazing landmark building that looks like a giant jewellery box. Conveniently close to New Street Station, the hotel is on floors 23 and 24, with cocktail bar and a Marco Pierre White restaurant on the 25th. In the basement is a spa , gym and chill out area. The rooms are modern, with floor to ceiling windows, dark wood floors and flat screen TV’s. Rooms are very good value, especially Sundays at £90 and midweek.
0120 643 2010
Simpsons is fundamentally a Michelin restaurant but it has 4 individually decorated / designed bedrooms within a handsome Grade II-listed house. Convenient for the university.
0121 454 3434
Located in the landmark Mailbox near the City centre & main train station. Beautifully appointed rooms, a hotel with superfluous style, calming comforts and intriguing interiors that defies comparison.
0121 246 5000
The Radisson SAS Birmingham is a modern chic 39-storey glass tower with views over the city, located in the city centre, 500 metres from Birmingham New Street Rail Station.
0121 654 6000
Staying Cool, City Centre
Trendy serviced apartments, with smart showers and chaise longues they are a smart mix of modern and retro at the top of the Rotunda in the City Centre. Available by the night and you can order fridge food to be there on arrival.
0121 643 0815
Bank Restaurant and Bar
Situated within Brindley Place, the Bank is very cosmopolitan and has the atmosphere of a lively continental brasserie. This unashamedly contemporary restaurant doesn’t just serve fish – but according to the Independent the fish that it does serve is exemplary.
0121 633 4466
The hip Malmaison Hotel houses the Malmaison brasserie with a stylish bar in a modern, arty interior. The food is classic,fairly simple brasserie fare of high quality.
0121 246 5000
La Plancha, Moseley Village
Described as the “hippest bar-rendezvous in the city”, the tapas menu is really what draws the crowd. A high energy experience with funky cocktails, good quality wines, champagne and mouth watering, authentic tapas served daily, all set in an intimate and sophisticated atmosphere.
0121 449 5430
Purnells, Cornwall Street
A Michelin starred restaurant in a conservation area serving fantastic contemporary food. Also voted AA’s Restaurant of the Year
0121 212 9799
Drakes, The Seafront
Two Regency townhouses create a 20 room luxury boutique hotel on the seafront, described as ‘urban chic’ and mixing old fashioned comfort and laid back modern design. The Gingerman restaurant offers excellent food
An elegant and excellent value boutique hotel with seven delightfully decorated contemporary rooms in a beautiful Georgian seafront town house. Highly rated in lots of reviews.
On the edge of Kemp Town village this small hotel is as well equipped as some 5 star hotels. It’s 6 rooms are jazzy and funky, and spotlessly clean. It is a bit of a walk into town, or a brief bus ride, but it’s location means it is quiet at night away from the noise of central Brighton. Staff are friendly and the breakfasts are excellent. It offers very good mid week deals.
A luxury Brighton boutique bed and breakfast hotel with 5 light, modern contemporary rooms and en-suites. Located in an elegant terrace of period townhouses, a short stroll from the sea front on Montpelier Road. Excellent value.
Churchill Brighton Guest House
A newly refurbished guest house with nine stylish and modern bedrooms and a selection of self catering holiday apartments based in the heart of the city. Close to all of Brighton’s fantastic offerings, local amenities, beautiful scenery and luxury restaurants. A stones throw from the seafront and only a few minutes walk from the famous Brighton pier, yet based in a quiet road where you’re guaranteed a peaceful nights sleep. Every room comes with a flat screen TV and Free View, Tea and Coffee Facilities, Complimentary toiletries and hair-dryer, personal fridge, modern fitted en suite bathrooms and free high speed WiFi.
Bill’s, The Depot, 101 North Street
The perfect place to get the Brighton vibe, this converted warehouse is stacked floor to celing with delicious goodies and crates and barrels full of fresh, local produce. Indulge in a scrumptious breakfast ( people travel miles for it) or enjoy pannini, soups and hot delicacies at lunch, with more hot dishes on offer in the evening. Do book as invariably there’s a queue. Its so tempting to see all the mouthwatering dishes displayed and made fresh from the produce that day and worth the 15 minute wait. Its warm and cosy ( the original Bills in Lewes was a bit draughty, as the front of the shop was open to sell the produce). Prices are reasonable, very breakfast and drink £7/head. lunch £12+ head supper £14+ head. A visit will never disappoint.
Affordable and excellent seafood owned by Dermot O’Leary, in a very attractive Georgian townhouse just off busy East Street.
Hotel Una ,Regency Square
Its 19 rooms are reasonably priced, very cool and understated. For a bit of glamour their Danube and Eden rooms have free standing baths and french doors opening onto sea views. Or you can opt for a subterrannean room with sauna and jacuzzi! Good cocktail bar for graduation celebrations.
Indian Summer, East Street
Central Brighton, near the sea front and offering light Indian cuisine. Very popular so do book. Good value set lunches.
Terre a Terre, East Street
Award winning vegetarian food with intriguing and original flair, and absolutely delicious for veggies and meat eaters – some say the best vegetarian restaurant in the south east.
A small French brasserie style restaurant serving unpretentious but delicious food, with good service
Berkeley Square Hotel
Berkeley Square is one of the closest hotels to the University of Bristol, a boutique style Grade 2 Georgian House set in a peaceful haven overlooking a beautiful Georgian Square, just off Park Street. The 42 room hotel prides itself on its first class hospitality and its individuality. Ideal for the student halls of Clifton
0117 925 4000
Bristol Marriott Royal Hotel
With a fabulous location, next to Bristol Cathedral and the historic waterfront, this Victorian-style hotel offers timeless, classical elegance, with polished marble, warm mahogany and gleaming brass.
0117 925 5100
Hotel du Vin Bristol
A magnificently restored Sugar House with oodles of character, previously a collection of Grade II-listed warehouses from the 1700s, is now home to Hotel du Vin Bristol.
0117 925 5577
Number 38, Clifton
An excellent value high quality B&B owned and run by the ex owner of the Kingham Plough (one of Britain’s best rated pubs) and a chef from The Fat Duck. The high ceiling rooms are beautifully decorated in this Georgian building, and the breakfasts are superb.
A small, romantic hotel with a secret walled garden, Situated on a beautiful Georgian terrace in the historical village of Clifton. The Hotel is currently re-branding itself as one of Bristol’s most elegant establishments.
0117 973 5422
The Wheatsheaf, Combe Hay
Between Bristol and Bath, this is a lovely four bedroom 17th century inn offering B&B and serving very good food.
The rooms are standard fare – though the maisonette suites have lovely views. Its perfectly situated for exploring the city.
0117 934 9500
Bristol is stuffed with restaurants – a real foodie’s city. Corn Street is the place to find an eclectic collection of independent food suppliers. The St Nicholas Market Mon-Sat 9.30 to 5.00, the Farmers Market every Wed 9.30 to 2.30, and the Bristol Slow Food Market along Corn Street 10.00 to 3.00 on the first Sunday of each month are worth a visit.
Arch House Deli, in Clifton was voted Deli of the Year in 2011, and is well worth a visit.
The Bistro at the Hotel du Vin
The Bistro restaurant is in a Grade II listed warehouse building dating back to the 1700s and is a very relaxed setting in which to enjoy unfussy good quality food with Mediterranean undertones. Reliable quality from this small chain of hotel/restaurants.
0117 925 5577
Serving delicious food in both its Brasserie and smarter restaurant overlooking the harbour. It also offers a deli and a cookery school. Regular recipient of enthusiastic reviews it offers locally sourced produce.
0117 906 5559/ 0117 904 6679
Cowshed, 46 Whiteladies Road, Clifton
Serving tasty,good quality English food with delicious Sunday roasts from local sources, and a fish and veg. option. Welcoming, light airy restaurant with friendly staff.
0117 973 3550
Fishers, Clifton Village
Informal, friendly little fish restaurant in the heart of Clifton Village which has continued to increase in reputation since its 2001 launch. The tasty, classic menu focuses on seasonal availability and sustainability. They serve an extensive range of fresh fish and seafood delivered daily from around the coast.
0117 974 7044
Aqua, Whiteladies Road
Aqua serves contemporary Italian cuisine and offers a variety of menus including a la carte. Chic interior and friendly staff serve reliably good food .You won’t be disappointed. A new restaurant has recently opened on Welsh Back on the waterfront.
0117 973 3314 and now at
0117 915 6060
Bells Diner, 1-3, York Road
French bistro setting with delicious Spanish style food. Welcoming and relaxing atmosphere.
0117 924 0357
Bristol Lido, Oakfield Place, Clifton
Big flavoured southern European food, with a very tempting menu that lives up to its promise. Unusual setting overlooking Bristol’s Lido.
0117 933 9530
The Pump House, Merchants Road, Hotwells
Serves delicate and traditional food – pork, rabbit, mullet, so a little different from the usual restaurants.
0117 927 2229
Ronnies, St Mary Street, Thornbury
This was the Good Food Guide restaurant of the year 2009 and the food is delicious and amazingly good value. Service is charming but the décor isn’t great so you have to be prepared to ignore that and enjoy the food.
Situated on the banks of the River Cam, Doubletree by Hilton offers picturesque views and is only a few minutes’ walk to the town.
01223 259988 2
0 01223 259988 1223
A stylish, privately owned hotel originally built as a Victorian mansion in 1852, the Hotel is now a chic and contemporary property, providing 52 elegant bedrooms.
01223 277 977
The Regent Hotel is a fine, listed building, situated in the heart of Cambridge. It is a privately owned and is a non smoking hotel. Choose an executive room.
01223 351 470
Varsity Hotel & Spa, Town Centre
Very appealing hotel which opened in 2010 with 48 light airy rooms and well equipped bathrooms in a converted 18th century warehouse on the River Cam close to Trinity and Magdalene colleges. Rooms on the top two floors have wooden decks and floor to ceiling windows. There is a large spa, and Conran designed gym, the brasserie style River Kitchen, a bar and a roof garden, and the prices are very reasonable.
Hotel du Vin Trumpington Street
Reliably comfortable well equipped elegant rooms, some with their own terrace. The restaurant offers their classic French inspired cuisine.
Hotel Felix Huntingdon Road
More 21st century than Victorian, with a cosy bar – and lots of modern art it offers an interesting combination of decors. Its restaurant Graffiti specializes in modern British cuisine and serves tasty food.
Alimentum, 152-154 Hills Road
Chic and glamorous, with 3 AA rosettes and serving modern European food. Good value fixed price menu. Location is bad – on a busy arterial road by a multiplex.
Celtic Manor, Coldra Woods, Usk Valley
5* Ryder Cup venue, lovely setting and lots of rooms so useful for graduation bookings. Spa and good restaurant. About 20 minutes from Cardiff
Hilton, Kingsway, Cardiff
Ideal central location, near station. Excellent facilities – pool, spa and reasonable room rates.
029 2064 6300
Park Plaza, Greyfriars Road
AA Hotel of the Year, Wales 2007. Design-led 4 star deluxe hotel situated in heart of city centre. Hotel feature a luxury spa & leisure facility.
029 2011 1111
Jolyon’s at No10, 10 Cathedral Road
This is a new and rather stylish 21 room hotel near the Millenium Stadium. The rooms are lovely and well equipped, though some are small, but at B&B rates of £60 – £80 ( for a suite) you can’t complain. The owner is welcoming, convivial and enthusiastic and the restaurant serves simple but tasty bar food at low prices. he also has a smaller hotel at Bute Cresent, Cardiff Bay which has had excellent reviews.
029 2009 1900
Cardiff Marriott Hotel, Mill Lane
A luxury hotel located in the city centre with a fitness club and indoor pool. The Cardiff Marriott was refurbished in 2008.
029 2039 9944
St David’s Hotel, Havannah Street, Cardiff Bay
An iconic five-star striking landmark hotel in Cardiff Bay. Glass fronted, every bedroom has floor to ceiling stunning views across the Bay
0844 824 6171
Fairyhill, Reynoldstone, Gower
8 individually designed luxurious rooms in a lovely country house set in beautiful parkland. Delicious food served in the restaurant. Its about 45 mins from Cardiff, and right in the middle of the Gower Peninsula, so probably more an option if you want to make a weekend of your stay and enjoy the stunning scenery of the Gower peninsula. perfect position for Gower walking. Charming staff.
Tides Grill at St David’s Hotel & Spa
Boasting the best location on Cardiff Bay, this smart contemporary restaurant is part of the Forte group, with the design overseen by Olga Polizzi. The hotel has a very good restaurant surrounded by a deck-style terrace where you can have a drink or, during the summer months, dine alfresco.
029 2031 3018
Caesars Arms, Cardiff Street, Creigiau
Fabulous food that attracts foodies from all over south wales
Fresh locally sourced Welsh produce has won it many local and national food and wine awards. Also has farm shop, vegetable gardens and sells honey from its own beehives. Heated dining terrace.
02920 890 486
Jamie’s Italian, St David’s Shopping Centre
Rustic, simple dishes, using the best ingredients resourced locally and in Italy. Fresh pasta every day. No reservations.
02920 027 792
Le Monde, 61 St Mary Street
Situated in the Mill Lane café quarter, Le Brasserie offers the perfect place for a relaxed lunch and in summer it has a pretty terrace area. Regarded particularly for its seafood.
02920 234 134
The Shelbourne, St Stephen’s Green
Three Georgian town houses form this hotel that has been popular for over 200 years. Full of character and atmosphere it has been recently refurbished and is part of the Marriott Group. You can enjoy afternoon tea or a drink in the historic Horseshoe Bar
00 353 1 663 4500
Dylan, Baggot Street
This stylish hotel is 15 minutes walk from Trinity College, tucked down a peaceful residential street. Its 44 very comfortable rooms have a modern boudoir feel, full of vibrant colours and its restaurant offers innovative Irish cuisine. The bar is a local fashionable hot spot.
00 353 1660 3000
L’Ecrivain, 109 Lower Baggot Street, Dublin
A friendly restaurant serving excellent food with Irish/French flair. Good choice of menus, rising from 25 Euro for a fixed price option up to the a la carte menu.
Tel :00 353 1661 1919
The Westbury, Grafton Street
A 200 room hotel, completely refurbished and in an ideal spot for shopping in Dublin’s best shopping streets. Bars, restaurants and well appointed rooms.
00 353 1 679 1122
Number 31, Leeson Street
A large 22 room guest house in a combined Georgian mews and townhouse where Grace Kelly and Henry Kissinger once stayed. Elegant, comfortable rooms, relaxing atmosphere and fabulous breakfasts.
00 353 1 676 5011
The Fallen Angel, 34 Old Elvet
Very OTT rooms with each of the 10 rooms themed on a film, tv or film character – Dr Zhivago, Cruella de Vil , Dr Who, New York and even the Premiere room. A fun stay, and it has a restaurant
0191 384 1037
Millgate House, Richmond
40 miles south of Durham on the edge of Swaledale, this gem of a B&B is highly rated by Sawdays and has a rare 98% rating on trip advisor. Not cheap for a B&B , but a real one off with great hosts and superb breakfasts . If you want something that is a bit different from the normal hotel, en route to Durham or Newcastle try this.
With exquisite food and elegant surroundings the Black Knight Restaurant at Lumley Castle is magnificent, providing a truly memorable experience.
Tapas bar and restaurant. Spanish-style menus with paella and tapas dishes made to share, and a wide selection of Spanish wines.
0845 126 2958
The Edinburgh Residence
The Edinburgh Residence is a 5-star residence hotel, comprising a collection of 29 elegant suites through three beautiful architectural Georgian adjoining houses in the West End of Edinburgh.
0131 226 3380
Old Town Chambers
The company offers two locations in Edinburgh. Old Town Chambers is made up of 50, 5 star apartments located in the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town, with view’s across the city. Merchiston Residence is their 4 star
location and is situated in a Grand Victorian Townhouse in one of Edinburgh’s most prestigious neighbourhoods. With 8 serviced apartments, Merchiston Residence offers a tranquil environment to stay in Edinburgh within reach of all major amenities and attractions.
Comfortable well designed rooms created by the people behind the Italian fashion house of Missoni. Unusual Missoni style décor with explosions of colour everywhere. Reasonably priced for a location just off the Royal Mile
0131 220 6666
The Chester Residence
Only 10 mins walk from Princes Street, this is a popular hideaway for those who like discreet style. Some of the 23 rooms have their own street entrance, and at the cheaper end their suites are excellent value. The rooms are smart, high tech and modern.
0131 226 2075
This could be described as a restaurant with rooms, or vice versa. The name comes from the menu – a choice of two starters, one soup, two mains, one cheese board and two desserts. The four rooms are very comfortable and well appointed, with dedicated lounge areas, and the bathrooms are roomy, with pleasant views over the Royal Terrace Gardens and down into the city. The food has some slightly offbeat combinations , but they work, and make a pleasant and very tasty change.
0845 222 1212
One of two hotels ( the other in Glasgow) modern and very stylish – lovely rooms, very chic and filled with objet d’art. Don’t let the outside put you off as it looks like a hulk with neon lighting, and it is rather near the Forth Bridge, so it does not have the most attractive of locations. From the Malmaison group.
0131 319 3690
Holyrood Aparthotel off The Royal Mile
Each serviced apartment has 2 bedrooms, living room, bathroom and kitchen. Good value for a family stay.
The Balmoral, Princess Street
Expensive and very luxurious 180 room hotel, with Michelin starred restaurant and highly regarded spa.
0131 556 2414
The Howard, Great King Street
For classic yet contemporary luxury and great atmosphere in the heart of Edinburgh this is a lovely hotel. It occupies 3 Georgian town houses and has an intimate14 cover restaurant serving excellent food. Staff will suggest restaurants too, will serve you a champagne afternoon tea and organise food orientated activities.
0131 274 7402
The Kitchin, 78 Commercial Quay, Leith
Tom Kitchin’s Edinburgh establishment boast innovative seasonal menus. and the Telegraph gave it the accolade of Britain’s best set lunch, but it is expensive.
0131 555 1755
Café Royal Oyster Bar, off Princes Street
A perfect Victorian relic with stained glass windows tucked down an alley off Princes Street. A Good Pub Guide winner for 2010 the food is reliable and good value. Lots of atmosphere. A real hidden gem.
0131 556 4124
Restaurant Martin Wishart, 54 The Short, Leith
Excellent food and impeccable service, perfect for a special occasion as it is quite expensive – and voted into first place in 2011 by Top Table diners
0131 553 3557
Valvona and Crolla, Leith
This one of Edinburgh’s best known Italian eating establishments. Its a must for anyone visiting Edinburgh for the Italian delicatessen alone(a deli from Heaven as Lloyd Grossman described it) with its quite unique and fabulous selection of all things Italian. The deli is on Elm row and The Caffe restaurant in Multrees Walk off Princes Street, where fabulous family recipes, handed down through generations are served.
0131 557 0088
Barioja and Iggs, Jeffries Street
A tapas bar which draws Spaniards as well as Scots it also serves more substantial mains. Iggs is the sister restaurant next door. Located in Edinburgh’s Historic Old Town, Barioja brings the flavour of Spain to the city.
0131 557 3622
Chez Joules, Hanover Street
French bistro style offering very tasty and reasonably priced food
0131 226 6992
The Haven, 8/9 Anchorfield
Not strictly a restaurant but a brilliant place for a massive and delicious breakfast or artisanal afternoon tea this is supreme comfort eating at incredibly reasonable prices. Breakfast will last you all day.
0131 467 7513
Stunning hotel, with prices to match in Dartmoor national Park, Bovey Castle was built in 1906 for Viscount “WH Smith” Hambledon, in the 368- square-mile Dartmoor National Park. More recently, it was turned into a grand hotel offering luxury and indulgence.
0844 474 0077
Brilliant central location. Smart, elegant and for what you get it is reasonably priced. And it houses the Michelin starred Michael Caines restaurant serving food with a real wow factor, plus 3 other places to eat and drink ( next doors Well House Tavern offers great fixed price lunch deals Located opposite the magnificent Cathedral, Abode was a 17th century coaching inn and has been recently refurbished. Rooms are all off white and luxury linens in contemporary style. The atmosphere is welcoming and buzzy
01392 319 955
Southernhay House , Town Centre
An lovely elegant georgian town house with 10 light and airy bedrooms, equipped with huge beds, modern bathrooms and a dusting of antiques. For graduation celebrations their dining room can seat 14. There is a brasserie and all day bar snacks are available too. Walking distance to the town centre.
Gidleigh Park, Chagford, Devon
A 20 mile drive from Exeter, but for a smart celebration this 2 star Michelin restaurant attached to a luxurious hotel is fabulous – set in acres of glorious countryside, and serving chef Michael Caine’s much praised food. See also below for his city centre restaurant at the ABode.
Michael Caines at the ABode
Fabulous Michelin restaurant attached to the ABode Hotel, see above.
Angela’s, New Bridge Street
Exeter seems to have re-discovered this wonderful restaurant with much enthusiasm. The stripped wooden floors, pale walls, newly cut flowers and white linen tablecloths create an atmosphere perfect for friendly family gatherings.
0845 206 1527
The Conservatory, North Street
The Conservatory is a small, light and airy restaurant set right in the heart of the City. Serving delicious Mediterranean cuisine in a stylish and relaxed atmosphere. Fish is a speciality, and with a menu that changes daily it wont disappoint – it always gets very good reviews.
01392 273 858
Mama Stone’s, 1 Mary Arches
Here the attraction is the music rather than the food. Regular jazz nights and great atmosphere. Joss Stone sometimes plays as it is owned by her mother. Food is a mix of southern US and Mexican.
Rendezvous 10, 38-40 Southernhay East
Serves a wide range of wines and tasty food based on local west country produce. It also offers a good value 2 course fixed price lunch, full dining and a sunny walled garden for summer eating. Attractive wine bar downstairs.
The Rusty Bike, 67 Howell Road
A great neighbourhood pub that serves good food
One Devonshire Gardens, Hotel du Vin
Luxurious 5* hotel has individually decorated rooms with a serious “wow” factor – some split level and with baths in the bathroom. Winner of many hotel awards last year for both hotel and restaurant
0141 339 2001
The Art House
Excellent hotel and fabulous dining in its own restaurant
Boutique hotel, competitively priced, with elegant Indian restaurant – the Bukhara
Grand Central Hotel, Gordon Street
Reopened at the end of 2010, totally refurbished, this is a large hotel, but with perfect city centre location. Excellent champagne bar for graduation celebrations
0141 240 3700
Hilton Glasgow Grosvenor Hotel
Luxury 4* hotel, not far from M8 and central location
0141 339 8811
One of the small chain of up market Townhouse hotels, the rooms are modern, with tweed upholstery and superb beds. The dining room is in what was once the Scottish RAC Club’s ballroom, and the food is an attractive mix of classic and contemporary, with an excellently priced set menu.
0141 208 2458
Kelvingrove Hotel, Sauchiehall Street
AA 4* family run hotel, clean comfortable well equipped rooms, also offer family
rooms and one room for 4 with self catering facilities
0141 339 5011
The Belhaven Hotel
Intimate 16 room hotel in West End. Very nice smart rooms. Free parking which
is a big advantage in Glasgow, and 2 self contained flats
0141 339 3222
Crabshakk, 1114 Argyle Street, Finnieston
You need to book at this small buzzy restaurant, and have a love of all things fishy, from delicious crab cakes and shellfish chowder, to scallops and traditional fish and chips. Some items are a bit expensive, but most are really good value and the food is really fresh. Relaxed and informal atmosphere.
0141 334 6127
Established for over 30 years and serving seasonal Scottish fayre with an excellent wine list. It has two dining venues that give you a feeling of dining outside – but you aren’t!
You need to book, even for lunch. Fabulous wine list and outstanding seafood risotto
Impeccably sourced food makes this a fabulous place to eat. Its a big brasserie style restaurant with an ultra fashionable Josper grill. The dishes have a wow flavour factor. One of Glasgow’s best, at 278 West George Street.
Hotel du Vin, One Devonshire Hotel
Excellent food and service in sumptuous surroundings.
A slow food specialist and thanks to their sourcing of shellfish and game they serve fantastic food. Their other venues are worth the drive to – especially the Cowal Peninsula
Bukharah at The Kelvin Park Lorne Hotel
Stylish healthy Indian cooking in this relatively new venue with the bonus of the Bilberry Cocktail Bar too. Park of a new hotel development on Sauchiehall St
Two Fat Ladies
The Shandon Belles is the newest addition to this clutch of restaurants in the basement of the Buttery, a super occasion restaurant with antique tea cups worth taking a cup of tea just to see which ones you get.
Fast food of quality. The vanilla cakes and coffe looking out onto Byres Road are great as are their pizzas.
A dining drinking and entertainment place with architecture, a whisky bar and a theatre. Private dining and function space and all in an old church with a tardis like feel that is worth going to even if only for a drink. Scottish base to the Brasserie menu. Always something on here so worth checking the website.
42, The Calls
An 18th century former mill, with 41 attractively decorated rooms, overlooking the River Aire. Great breakfasts, and excellent value.
0113 244 0099
The Leeds Marriott
The Leeds Marriott Hotel welcomes guests with refined luxury, historic charm, modern sophistication, and an unparalleled city centre location. Make yourself at home in one of our contemporary rooms and suites, which offer plush pillowtop bedding, high-speed Internet access, 24-hour room service, and comfortable work areas. Upgrade to one of our stunning Executive Level accommodations for access to our luxury Lounge, offering complimentary Wi-Fi, morning breakfast, and evening nibbles.
0113 2366 366
Positioned in the heart of City Square, the elegant Queens Hotel has long stood as Leeds’s most famous landmark hotel. Recently refurbished the hotel features its classic Art Deco heritage and 4* modern luxury.
0113 243 1323
Malmaison Brasserie, Swinegate
In the very heart of Leeds, Malmaison Brasserie is a sleek,chic buzzy brasserie with soaring vaulted ceiling, an open through fireplace and cosy booths. The staff are passionate about food, wine and service. Inspiration is taken from great ‘French brasserie-style dishes’ and reliably served with a unique contemporary twist. Smart modern rooms available in the hotel.
0844 567 2342
Casa Mia Grande
A bustling family-run Italian restaurant, serving traditional dishes in a lively unpretentious atmosphere
0845 688 3030
Brasserie Forty 4, 44 The Calls
A family owned and run restaurant offering fine food and excellent service in a relaxed atmosphere. Linked to 42 The Calls – a modern hotel in a converted grain mill. It also serves a good value fixed price lunch menu
0113 234 3232
Champagne tasting? For something a little different go champagne tasting at Epernay in Great George Street. Tel.0113 242 9977
Hotel Maiyango, St Nicholas Place
Hidden away amongst high streets shops it’s a boutique style small hotel, lots of wood in sleek rooms and a restaurant serving good food. Rooms are a little small but for dinner and B&B its good value
With a Georgian style facade carved from local stone, the Ramada Loughborough is built around a delightful courtyard, complete with its own fountain. The hotel is set in the heart of the lively, thriving university town of Loughborough. Secure car parking.
01509 233 222
The Quorn Country Hotel
Acclaimed four star hotel situated within the village of Quorn, 3 miles from Loughborough. Newly refurbished bedrooms. Delightful gardens leading down to the River Soar.
01509 415 050
The Hunting Lodge
A charming privately owned hotel is situated in the village of Cottingham, about 3 miles from Loughborough. Situated in private and tree surrounded grounds.
This cottage style restaurant has only been open since 2005 and has scooped many local awards, headed by Paul Leary the restaurant has received 5 stars in the Food and Drink magazine, 2 AA Rosettes, as well as Best Neighbourhood Restaurant in 2007 (Leicestershire and Rutland).
Crown Inn, Old Dalby
A traditional bar area with separate stylish restaurant offers excellent food, both modern british and traditional dishes. It is not very big so best to book ahead
The Old Bulls Head
A modern pub/restaurant, great for Sunday lunch and about 10 mins drive from the University
Luxurious hotel and Michael Caines delicious food in the restaurant. Located just minutes from Piccadilly the hotel retains the period character of a Victorian cotton merchant’s warehouse. With original features remaining its total refurbishment brings ABode’s understated modern British style, comfort and luxury.
0161 247 7744
Chic, comfortable rooms in this trendy new 5* contemporary hotel. Great service. Located in the heart of the city, The striking curved glass-fronted façade, together with the clean lines and sleek furnishing of the interior create a uniquely bright and airy feel throughout the hotel.
0161 827 4000
Manchester’s first apart-hotel offers boutique luxury accommodation in stylish serviced apartments.
0161 839 4848
Great John Street Hotel, Great John Street
A chic 30 room city centre hotel in a converted Victorian schoolhouse, with stripped floors and exposed brickwork – stylish and spacious rooms with a rooftop lounge and intimate bar. High end rates from Baby Grand to Opus Grand, but deals can be found online. Lots of nearby cafes for good continental breakfasts. If you are on the Didsbury side of town, Didsbury House and Eleven Didsbury Park are its sister hotels.
0161 831 3211
The Place Apartments
Fantastic value open plan self catering apartments with large rooms and kitchens
0161 778 7500
The Midland, Peter Street
The French Restaurant in this landmark hotel is very smart , all chandeliers and gleaming glasses. Excellent food and a perfect venue for a smart graduation dinner. Central city position.
0161 263 3333
The River Restaurant at the Lowry Hotel
Offering modern classic cuisine in a smart environment. The creative kitchen comes up trumps with skilfully prepared, brasserie fare, presented without over-embellishment.
0161 827 4041
One of Manchester’s best Italians, in the Old Stock Exchange building whose magnificent 50-foot domed ceiling and original marble features create instant atmosphere. The southern Italian food and its distinctive style has won it several awards since it opened in 1999.
0161 839 6644
Sweet Mandarin, 19 Copperas Street
Sweet Mandarin won Best Local Chinese Restaurant in the UK on Gordon Ramsay’s F Word programme, and regularly wins accolades for its innovative and tasty food.
0161 832 8848
The Room, King Street
Set in the impressive Victorian gothic architecture of the old Reform Club, The Room serves up a contemporary take on modern British cuisine. Excellent value 2/3 course meals.
0161 839 2005
This Greek restaurant is one of Manchester’s longest established eateries and enjoys a loyal following amongst the city’s diners. The vibe is strongly Mediterranean, and at weekends the atmosphere has a lively feel. Diners can choose from the ‘tapas’ menu or the ‘platas’ menu of more substantial dishes.
0161 839 3319
Close House , Heddon on the Wall
A smart and ultra cool 31 room hotel about 8 miles outside Newcastle, deep in the countryside and with an adjacent golf course. Rooms are an example of understated elegant modern luxury. It’s a well hidden secret, with an excellent fine dining restaurant. B&B rates are very good value given what you get for the money. They even offer complimentary collection from Newcastle station.
Jesmond Dene House
A hotel set in woodland in an Arts & Crafts building, 10 minutes by taxi from the centre, with 40 individual rooms designed in a mix of contemporary country house/ town house styles. There is an excellent French restaurant, see below, and the hotel won AA’s Hotel of the Year 2 years ago.
0191 212 3000
The Town House
Relaxed, elegant 10 bedroom hotel beautifully decorated and very comfortable
0191 285 6812
East Byermoor Guest House
A 4 star silver rated B&B in a 17th century farmhouse 7 miles outside of the city centre, but if you want to explore the lovely surrounding countryside it is ideal.
Holiday Inn Express Waterloo Square
Functional, clean and pleasant with 130 rooms and convenient for the station. Very good room rates.
0191 224 6850
Jesmond Dene House
Although just five minutes from Newcastle city centre, Jesmond Dene House enjoys a peaceful rural setting overlooking a wooded valley. It boasts a wood-panelled Great Hall and a three-AA-rosetted restaurant run by Head Chef Pierre Rigothier with a focus on fresh and high-quality local produce.
0191 212 3000
This highly chic brasserie is all about style and comfort, with individual booths bathed in the soft glow of candlelight, perfect to cosy up in. The staff are passionate about food, wine and service. Malmaison offers a home grown and local menu – using the freshest Tyneside and Northumbrian produce – alongside the a la carte menu.
0191 245 5000
Tucked away down Market Lane, Paradiso is a hidden treasure. Located in an old print works Paradiso is spread over three floors and remains one of Newcastle’s best-loved destinations. Lunchtime the place has an informal café atmosphere, with people often choosing to take advantage of the seats out on the balcony. Exotic sandwiches, wraps, bruschetta, salads and hot dishes ranging from Ricotta and spinach tartlet with red onion marmalade to Italian sausage pie are the mainstays of the menu.
0191 221 1240
The Lace Market Hotel
An elegant conversion of several Victorian houses, with friendly service in a trendy and vibrant area of the city. 42 beautiful bedrooms, a 2 AA Rosette awarded restaurant, cocktail bar, and a quintessentially British gastro pub.
Nottingham’s first and only purpose built boutique hotel opened in Spring 2003. Hart’s is also Nottingham’s highest rated hotel according to the AA Guide. The hotel has 32 light and airy contemporary rooms of which 24 have quiet views over the garden and park and the others overlook the hotel’s internal courtyard . It is a three minute walk from the city, has a secure car park and an excellent restaurant. Don’t let its rather municipal situation next to a hospital put you off. It is owned by the same people who own Hambledon Hall, a well reknowned country house hotel in nearby Rutland, and the welcome is personal and friendly.
0115 988 1900
Restaurant Sat Bains
In the heart of Nottingham it is undoubtedly the city’s number-one destination dining spot & the worthy holder of a Michelin star. Food takes the form a tasting menu. The Telegraph critic describes it as his “finest discovery of the year”.
0115 986 6566
A beautiful setting in the heart of Melton Mowbray country, it was described in the Sunday Times as a “country house hotel that makes you jump for joy”. If you are ever looking for somewhere special to stay or dine, then this charming country house hotel near Nottingham is ideal. The food reflects the house and its situation – classical English with a twist. friendly ambience, and 12 elegant rooms.
An informal tapas restaurant in the Lace Market area under the Galleries of justice, serving tasty tapas in very atmospheric setting
0115 941 0410
Tom Brown’s Brasserie
Set in a converted Victorian schoolhouse this family-run brasserie is situated in a prime site overlooking the River Trent. Service is friendly and relaxed and the food is all freshly made and seasonal, with influences from around the world.
0845 206 0731
The Martin’s Arms, Colston Basset
A cosy pub voted Nottingham’s Best Pub/Restaurant surrounded by beautiful national Trust countryside. in a delightful village south east of Nottingham. Serving quality food it has a great atmosphere and is furnished with antique furniture. Food can be eaten in the small but charming restaurant as well as the cosy bar.
Described by the Telegraph as the best place to eat a Melton Mowbray pie, it is a Michelin “we most liked” pub, and won Landlord of the Year 2009. In the village of Strathern in the Vale of Belvoir this is a little bit outside Nottingham but well worth the visit.
A deli and café serving delicious food , highly rated by Waitrose, the Independent and Guardian
0115 948 4461
The Old Parsonage, Banbury Road, Oxford
Privately owned luxury 30 room hotel, perfectly situated in central Oxford. A warm welcome and great service. Quite expensive, with very good restaurant attached. This converted 17th century parsonage offers a welcoming club like atmosphere, cosy and inviting with an impressive collection of 20th century art. They even offer a complimentary walking tour with their resident art expert.
Old Bank Hotel
On the High Street with a perfect city centre location amidst the colleges, and with a spacious car park. 42 modern trendy rooms in a converted bank and its own buzzy and atmospheric restaurant the Quod Brasserie serving simple but delicious food and excellent breakfasts. Go for a room at the back as the street side can be a bit noisy.
Central location opposite the Ashmolean Museum. 151 rooms , very expensive but due to the number of rooms some good value late booking deals are available.
63 bedrooms , smart and contemporary, but again expensive due to it central location
Cotswold Lodge Hotel
Elegant Victorian hotel with 10 comfortable bedrooms , very reasonably priced and with complimentary parking for residents –10 minutes’ walk or a short bus ride from the centre.
A large, Victorian merchant’s house, dating from 1889. With 12 stylish rooms, and on-site car parking facilities.
Oxford Thames Four Pillars , Henley Road, Sandford on Thames
Luxurious rooms in 30 acres of tranquil parkland 3 miles from the city centre, on a bus route, so no parking hassles. Fine dining restaurant overlooking the Thames. Excellent value.
01865 334 444
The Vanbrugh House Hotel, St Michael’s Street
this is a new boutique hotel with 22 rooms in a quiet side street opposte the students union. It is full of character, and has a tiny basement restaurant with a courtyard garden, serving tasty food. 24 hour parking is 5 minutes away. All rooms have free minibars and fast wi-fi. Superior rooms at an extra £20 are worth it for all the little extra touches. The garden rooms are perfect for graduation parties.
The Old Parsonage, Banbury Road, Oxford
Superb traditional food , simple and classic and attached to a lovely hotel in central Oxford
Quod Brasserie 92 High Street
Part of the Old Bank Hotel this bustling lively restaurant serves delicious unpretentious food, and is well known for its Sunday lunch. It has a large outdoor terrace and unusually for Oxford offers free parking.
The Rickety Press, Cranham Street
With one of those menus where you feel you would be happy eating anything off it, this restaurant is gaining a very good reputation for tasty, refined food at reasonable prices.
The Turf Tavern, Bath Place
A 13th Century ale house and one of the oldest in Oxford. Go early as it can get busy, though there is overflow into a pleasant courtyard. Good value food.
The Magdalen Arms, 243 Iffley Road
Relatively new, and proving very popular, it is run by proteges of the well known Hope and Anchor gastro pub in London. All the food is home made – the chef’s Italian mum even makes the pasta! Everything is cooked to order, so don’t expect fast service – just time to enjoy and savour delectable food
Mercure Sheffield St Pauls
This striking new landmark hotel opened in October 2005 offering luxury rooms and sets the tone for an urban, contemporary retreat.
0114 278 2000
The Leopold hotel is Sheffield’s first boutique hotel and is a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World. It is a historic building that was once a school, with double height suites and eclectic decor. Very friendly and relaxing and reasonably priced, it is located in Sheffield’s city centre.
The original part of Sitwell Arms Hotel dates back to the 18th Century when it was a famous coaching inn. It has now been tastefully extended to offer a wide range of facilities. Set in 6 acres of magnificent grounds, it is located about 10 miles from the city centre.
An excellent gastropub in an old Victorian building where they bake their bread daily, and even make their own pasta, ice creams, puddings and chutneys. It has justifiably won lots of awards for its food.
0114 272 8327
A unique place to relax and treat yourself to fine food, drinks and experience the best side of life. The Michelin star-aspiring Walnut Club is one of the UK’s first strictly Organic Restaurants, based in Hathersage on the outskirts of Sheffield.
0114 267 6566
Silversmiths is a contemporary restaurant featuring a menu of British cuisine using seasonal produce sourced from suppliers based in Sheffield and Yorkshire. They also offer an extensive drinks list including a range of cocktails made with fresh fruits
0114 270 6160
Relaxed cafe eating with top quality food. Informal blackboard menus, a buzzing atmosphere and no advanced booking, so arrive early.
0114 267 0735
Wig & Pen
The Wig & Pen is a cross between a gastropub and restaurant. Its warren of tiny, dark, panelled rooms in a Georgian House gives dining an intimate feel. Dishes are accomplished versions of traditional Northern English fare served with abundance.
0114 276 3988
Delicious modern style food in this very popular restaurant, so do book ahead
0114 230 4819
The Lazy Cow, 10 Theatre Street, Warwick
With a style described as Lady Gaga meets Grace Kelly you might be put off, but don’t be – it’s a fun and different hotel, with charming rooms, high quality linens and smellies, and of course a strong cow theme throughout. The steakhouse restaurant serves excellent food, and the service is charming and very efficient.
Cedar Court Grand
York’s new 5 star hotel, a Grade II-listed building, opened in May 2010. Following restoration, this former North Eastern Railways headquarters is a short stroll from the station and city centre and offers luxurious bedrooms & relaxing public areas.
The Studeley Hotel
Very nice boutique style hotel, lovely rooms, and good city centre position. Their Orchid Restaurant serves a delicious pan-Asian menu.
Hotel du Vin & Bistro York
Guaranteed quality and comfort
With its discreet hum & handsome setting within a beautifully restored Queen Anne mansion, the intimate, panelled dining room at Middlethorpe Hall is the epitome of the classic country house restaurant. Ambience may be decidedly formal (although it’s no longer necessary to don a jacket & tie), but with impressive modern British food & polished service that live up to the attractive setting, this is an easy choice for a special occasion.
The Ivy Brasserie at the Grange Hotel
Situated just a short walk from York Minster and the city centre shops this award-winning hotel and restaurant offers the visitor somewhere special to stay with luxurious accommodation, first class service and free private on-site car park. The contemporary AA 2 rosette Ivy Brasserie complements the stylish ambience of this superb hotel and the modern British and European menu makes good use of local produce. The Ivy Brasserie is also open at lunchtime when an extensive value for money menu is available with a traditional lunch served on Sundays.
The Durham Ox
Nestled in the beautiful countryside just (well 20 minutes!) outside of York, The Durham Ox has been named one of the top country pubs in Britain by The Times – a gastropub in a 300 year old building. in the heart of Herriot Country. The pub has stunning views over the Vale of York and is friendly and comfortable? The dining room is sophisticated but cosy while the bar is a traditional country pub with all the trimmings. The menu is packed with Yorkshire beef, local vegetables and British classics while the specials menu is more seasonal.
Betty’s Cafe & Tea Rooms
Betty’s is one of York’s famous attractions with 3 floors of Art Deco period interiors. Ask anyone who has visited York and they always recommend a visit to Betty’s for lunch or afternoon tea. You can also have dinner from an Anglo-Swiss menu until 9.00pm. The queue outside says it all – worth the wait for the quality of food & service.