It took us SIX hours to get to the Manor Country House in Oxford, from Portsmouth, SIX HOURS. Unfortunately we’d (me and this new man I dropped into that catch up blog post)  decided to travel on the most difficult weekend of the year for the route, actually, not even weekend, day. Train strikes and inches of snow meant it was four trains, a two hour wait in the cold and a taxi until we made it to the cosy log fire at the manor.

But, we made it!

Manor Country House Oxford

We’d been very excited to check out the ‘Christmas’ at The Manor and planned on a Sunday in Oxford – lunch, exploring, over to the Manor – and Monday at Blenheim Palace. He’d booked the day off from work and everything.

But no.

Due to the aforementioned travel, our fancy Oxford lunch turned out to be more like a packet of crisps on the platform at Reading Station, and then a sausage roll waiting for a taxi at Oxford Station.

Oh and thanks to the fact my cheapo New Look shoes had basically snapped in half and the frozen snow was seeping in, I was only ever ten minutes from hypothermia. Basically, we were well in need of a log fire and a country manor house to rest our cold, cold feet.

At the Manor Country House Hotel

Manor Country House Oxford

Other guests had had to cancel their plans thanks to the weather. Lucky for us though, apart from two other couples who went to bed early, we had the place to ourselves. Our own private Manor in Oxfordshire.

Manor Weston Oxford

 

Manor Weston Oxford

 

Dinner time

Dinner at the Manor Weston Oxford

We were booked in for a three-course meal. I had the duck, followed by a turkey dinner and all the trimmings. Lastly, an apple and rhubarb crumble. That’s the pork belly you see up there – he chose that. Definitely a step up from what that train platform lunch.

We spent the rest of the evening nursing a glass of Malbec by the open log fire and playing cards. It would’ve been cheeseily romantic, if we hadn’t just spent the time calling each other ‘Shithead’. It’s a game. Apparently there was no way I was going to beat him. Totally did, and at rummy.

Our room was huge – we had the Chapel Suite. They’d asked if I wanted the Bridal Suite but I felt it might be a bit much for our first weekend away…

The next day

Breakfast Manor Weston Oxford

The breakfast was an absolute delight. I knew it was going to be. All the food is locally sourced. In my professional opinion I’d say the sausage and the hash browns were the best bits. Definite compliments to the chef.

Despite the fact my shoes were finally cosy and warm from resting them on the scorching towel rail all night, we couldn’t not take a walk around the snowy grounds. A minute later and my feet were wet and freezing again but the gardens were pretty, and the frozen snowy sun loungers were definitely an interesting sight.

Reasons to visit the Manor

Manor Oxford

1. The Manor is perfectly located for Bicester Village. Neither of us are really into shopping so we didn’t even give it a second thought, but there was a group of women who came into the hotel with hands full of bags to show off their purchases.

2. There are tennis courts, a marquee and walking routes – but not for us that weekend. Go in summer if that’s what you’re into!

3. It’s a great place if you’re into old houses and creaky floorboards. I reckon ghost hunters would have a great time here.

4. It’s only 15 minutes from Oxford. Perfect if you want a traditional retreat away from the city.

5. For a romantic place to stay – definitely at Christmas, and I’m imagining in the summer – that’s centrally located in England, book yourself in for a night or two!

I stayed at The Manor courtesy of The Manor Farm, for one night in December. Prices start from £86 per night. Enjoy!

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