The Retreat at Elcot Park

Newbury, Berkshire

A Regency mansion in parkland, once home to Percy Shelley’s mother, has been reimagined as a contemporary country house hotel infused with a blithe spirit. More

Good Hotel Guide Review

Once home to Percy Shelley’s mother, this Regency mansion in parkland has been reimagined as a contemporary country-house hotel, infused with a blithe spirit. Formerly a garish Mercure, it is now part of Hector Ross’s Signet Collection (see The Mitre, Hampton Court, The Barnsdale, Oakham). ‘It looks like a posh country-house hotel with croquet, tennis and a helipad, but it comes with a frission of fun and at a fraction of the price,’ write our inspectors. ‘Complimentary wine at check in, pantries to raid and family swim times in the pool make this a relaxed retreat.’ It’s also a stylish one, with a ‘modern English feel, bright fabrics and William Morris wallpaper’. Surprisingly affordable bedrooms range from ‘classics’ with a walk-in or over-bath shower, to suites with a mini bar of treats, maybe an in-room copper bathtub. Some are dog friendly; you can eat with your pooch in the Atlas Room lounge, or in the Orangery, part of the 1772 Brasserie, where a short menu includes dishes such as tempura-battered hake. The Pan-Asian Yu serves the ‘freshest sushi and sashimi’. Breakfast includes an ‘excellent buffet’ plus cooked dishes; there is a spa and hair salon on site.

Hotel details


RG20 8NJ



55. 5 with wheelchair access.


all year. Brasserie daily, Yu lunch Thurs–Sat, dinner Wed–Sat.


reception seating, lounge, 2 restaurants, 3 private dining rooms, in-room TV (Netflix, YouTube), civil wedding licence, EV charging, spa (indoor hydrotherapy pool), gym, beauty salon, outdoor heated infinity pool (cabanas, wine bar), courtyard café/deli, 16-acre parkland.

Background music

'to suit the venue', at low volume.


all ages welcome. 3 family suites with bunk room. Children's menu.


aged 1 year and over allowed in several ground-floor rooms, Orangery and Atlas Room, not in Brasserie or Yu, max 2 per room (£30 a night, welcome pack).

Credit cards

Amex, MC, Visa.


B&B doubles from £150. À la carte (Brasserie) £50. 1-night stays may be declined some weekends.