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Best Wiltshire hotels for 2022

Best Wiltshire hotels for 2022
Enjoy Wiltshire’s many areas of outstanding beauty, the quiet Cotswolds, or the county’s many pubs after a good night’s sleep at one of these Wiltshire hotels

Wiltshire is a county of chalky ridges and wide plains, of ancient monuments (at Stonehenge and Avebury) and quaint market towns. It may not buzz with counterculture – that’s neighbouring Somerset – but it is all the better for its quiet anonymity. If you want a quintessential English countryside break, you will easily find it here, with fabulous farm-to-fork restaurants, manor houses-a-plenty and great walking, both in the Cotswolds and in other areas of natural beauty that are much more rarely visited.

The best hotels in Wiltshire are:

Best for spa stays: Lucknam Park

Neighbourhood: Cotswolds AONB

This luxury hotel offers high standards of service and comfort with 43 lavishly furnished rooms and a handful of self-catered cottages. Standing at the end of a long, tree-lined drive, genteel pursuits such as horse-riding, horse-whispering and archery are all possible on the grounds. The biggest draw though is the hotel’s contemporary spa, which is all sleek lines in polished stone, with a modern fireplace down one side and a hydrotherapy pool with a swim-through to the garden. Follow a soak with dinner at the fairly formal Michelin-starred Restaurant Hywel Jones and feel truly spoiled.

Price: Doubles from £373, B&B

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Best for village life: The Bradley Hare

Neighbourhood: Cranborne Chase AONB

Set on the Duke of Somerset’s estate, The Bradley Hare is a converted coaching house that offers spa treatments in a potting shed on the estate, 12 luxurious rooms, fabulous cocktails and quality cooking. The knock-out interiors, from the former European design director of Soho House, sit modern art prints alongside folky fabrics with a backdrop of calming, natural colours. The food, which makes use of local ingredients like foraged mushrooms and truffles, is satisfying and there is a congenial buzz when propping up the bar of an evening.

Price: Doubles from £170, B&B

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Best for history: Sign of the Angel

Neighbourhood: Lacock

In the National Trust-owned village of Lacock, this half-timbered inn dates back to the 15th-century and has five sometimes cosy but always character-filled rooms. The decor is homely and restrained, with muted colours and tactile fabrics. Lacock’s cobbled streets are lined with historic buildings that have often been the backdrop for period dramas. At the back is a pretty garden while the inn’s downstairs area is devoted to dining, with plates of inventive, European cooking featuring local ingredients and served beside medieval stone fireplaces.

Price: Doubles from £120, B&B

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Best for country feels: The Manor House

Neighbourhood: Cotswolds AONB

Cupped by woods on the edge of one of the Cotswold’s prettiest villages, Castle Combe, The Manor House has beautiful period features, including a grand, wood-panelled lounge, huge fireplaces and windows featuring stained-glass family crests. The 50 rooms are not the most modern but are luxurious and have individual charm, with some located in a row of cottages beside the manor. An Italianate garden climbs a slope at the back of the house, while pretty Castle Combe is on your doorstep. The Michelin-star restaurant, Bybrook, is a real treat from chef Rob Potter.

Price: Doubles from £280, B&B

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Best boutique B&B: The Rectory Hotel

Neighbourhood: Cotswolds AONB

Hidden behind high walls, The Rectory has an air of sophisticated indulgence. Its lounges have the armchairs, cornicing and fireplaces that you might find in other country houses but there are also quirky, contemporary design features to make guests smile and a beautiful restaurant, with gold bistro tables, long candlesticks and huge windows. The menu features European cuisine and sharing plates, while the darkened bar is a beguiling place for a cocktail. The 18 bedrooms are simply decorated and have a fresh elegance. Outside, a heated pool is tucked away in a rose-filled courtyard and there is a lovely ornamental pond.

Price: Doubles from £170, B&B

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Best for riverside views: Timbrell’s Yard

Neighbourhood: Bradford-on-Avon

Set beside the river in golden-stone Bradford-on-Avon, this Grade II-listed building has 17 rooms plus a large, industrial-style restaurant. Some bedrooms have small seating areas overlooking the river but everyone can enjoy the water from the terrace. The restaurant is usually buzzing, with the kitchen serving River Cottage-style food made from local ingredients. The vegan dish is always good. The hotel makes a good base for strolling round the market town’s many sights but is also close to the Kennet & Avon canal for walks in the countryside.

Price: Doubles from £95, B&B

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Best for walks: Beckford Arms

Neighbourhood: Cranborne Chase AONB

Set a stone’s throw from Fonthill’s lake, which is ringed by follies and grottos, this inn is a starting point for some lovely walks into the Nadder Valley. The eight rooms are not the most spacious but are confidently styled with muted colours and Berber rugs. The restaurant has comfy sofas, roaring fires and a vintage feel, with bunches of hops hanging above the bar. The gastropub food is expertly-made, with an emphasis on local produce. Its sister inn, The Bath Arms, has similar standards and is found on the Longleat Estate.

Price: Doubles from £105, B&B

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Best for families: Woolley Grange

Neighbourhood: Bradford-on-Avon

This manor house is more lived-in than most as it caters especially to families, with chests of toys dotted about, an early tea each day and a dedicated, expertly run creche on site. With the little ones entertained, parents can enjoy the spa, which has a pool, sauna and steam room. They can also dine at a more adult hour in peace, thanks to a babysitting service. Many of the wide-ranging rooms have wooden beams and there are glamping options in summer too, when the outdoor pool on the lawn becomes the place to be.

Price: Doubles from £130, B&B

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Best for pub lovers: The Methuen Arms

Neighbourhood: Corsham

This attractive inn sits at the entrance to Corsham’s quaint high street, which is an appealing jumble of listed buildings. There are 19 gorgeously-styled rooms with patterned wallpaper and velvet upholstery set against earthy paint tones. The outdoor spaces include a garden and a honey-stone courtyard that is lit with fairy lights at night but is also a great spot for an alfresco brunch. Come expecting gastropub food and you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the many creative touches livening up the dishes. The front room has been kept as a lively bar for locals.

Price: Doubles from £116, B&B

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Best for tranquil gardens: Bowood Hotel

Neighbourhood: Chippenham

Built on the grounds of Grade I-listed Bowood House, with formal gardens, terraces adorned with rose bushes, a lake and rhododendrons in the woods all just a stroll away, the hotel itself may be a modern build but it offers a tranquil stay. Adults can enjoy the modest spa, while children will be thrilled with the super-sized, wood-built adventure playground on the grounds, which has aerial walkways and pirate ships. Rooms are all spacious, with clean, modern lines. The restaurant flings open its doors in summer to offer dining on the large terrace.

Price: Doubles from £194, B&B

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