Michelle Chenery reports on a stay at Macdonald Berystede Hotel & Spa, AscotWhat would event organisers want from a good hotel in close proximity to Ascot in Berkshire?
Certainly style, character, comfort, landscaped gardens, quality cuisine and pampering for delegates. Plus, of course, a choice of meeting facilities with the latest technology.
I found all that at the Macdonald Berystede Hotel & Spa, the closest 4-star property to Ascot and one that is easy to access from Heathrow Airport and is only an hour’s drive out of Central London. There is secured parking for up to 250 cars.
Leisure programmes are no problem when close-by you have historic Windsor Castle and modern shopping, Legoland, Thorpe Park and the Wentworth Championship Golf Course.
Originally a stately home, the central manor house has been extended through the years it has been a hotel, giving it a very special character.
There is an open fireplace in reception, wood panelling and dark wood banisters that lead up the main staircase. Yet there is still a general sense of light and airiness. A recent multi-million pound investment has ensured that everywhere is in perfect condition and that the latest technology is available throughout.
There are 126 guestrooms and suites in the categories of Classic, Executive and Feature Rooms. Those in the turrets of the original manor house boast high ceilings, period features and four-poster beds. Views from the hotel are either of the property’s own extensive gardens or the beautiful Berkshire countryside. The Turret Suite consists of separate living and dining spaces, an alcove sitting area as well as a spacious bathroom and a walk-in wardrobe.
All bedrooms provide a large desk, tea- and coffee-making facilities, a safe that can accommodate a laptop, flat screen tv, minibar, complimentary mineral water and free Wi-Fi.
With over £1m recently invested in the hotel’s IT infrastructure, all guests enjoy free Wi-Fi not only in the meeting rooms but also in the public areas. Dedicated connection speeds of up to 100MB per second can be provided exclusively for events.
The bar, lounge, reception and the Hyperion Restaurant have all been enhanced in the recent refurbishment. The Diadem Bar and Wentworth Lounge have a new look that lends them the air of an exclusive club, with the added bonus of the latest sports events on TV. The Wentworth Lounge has soft leather sofas where guests can enjoy a refreshing breeze from the terrace during the summer months. The Oak lounge offers comfortable sofas and an open fireplace, a real fire being the focal point during winter months for relaxation with pre-dinner drinks, morning coffee or an informal meeting.
The book-lined Library is popular for gatherings of up to 22 people. For discreet executive boardroom meetings up to 12 people, there is the soundproofed Brokenhurst Boardroom, with an LCD screen connection for convenient laptop presentations.
Buffet breakfasts and formal dinners are served in the Hyperion, the hotel’s AA Rosette award winning restaurant. The cuisine is contemporary European and English, using finest quality local ingredients. Its full-length windows provide delightful views. In good weather, alfresco dining is an option on the terrace.
The hotel’s Spa and Leisure Club comprises six treatment rooms, a relaxation suite, a thermal suite, two nail bars, a technogym as well as an external hydrotherapy pool and an indoor 18-metre swimming pool. A wide array of treatments include facials, deep relaxing scalp massages, aroma envelopments and exclusive treatments with Elemis, Jessica and Carita products.
For further details and informataion on Macdonald Berystede Hotel & Spa, Ascot near Windsor call 0844 879 9104 International +44 1344 623311