University Arms – Cambridge
Cambridge’s leading luxury hotel is by far its most exciting. The 19th-century façade facing the parkland of Parker’s Piece – where the first game of FA rules football was played – has been restored, with stained glass windows throughout and an extra floor of suites featuring classic Edwardian interiors, bespoke furniture and private terraces. The hotel’s articulated roof line is ingenious, the real triumph being architect John Simpson’s neoclassical design: the elegant new porte-cochère on Regent Street, which heralds the building with stately impact, inviting visitors through one of three handsome front doors. One for guests staying in one of the 192 suitably bookish and eclectic rooms, painted in shades of Cambridge blue. The additional two are for Parker’s Tavern, a brasserie restaurant and cocktail bar, with interiors (like the bedrooms) by Martin Brudnizki. This charming evocation of a college dining hall is graced by a menu showcasing seasonal produce from talented chef Tristan Welch. It’s the town’s hottest dining destination: old school but hip. One for your radar.
Doubles from £159
+44 (0)1223 606066; universityarms.com