Once the most celebrated coaching inn of its age, the Spread Eagle elegantly marries history, tradition and character with contemporary, spoiling treats. In the fine, old-fashioned dining room, earthenware pudding basins dangle from the ceiling, a tangible reminder of the days when puddings were presented to guests every Christmas. Yet the same inn also sports an on-trend gin bar, with more than 100 different brands and 12 different tonics, plus garnishes from the garden. In a building that dates back to 1430 and is set in the middle of Midhurst’s historic market town, what a treat to find an impressive spa and indoor pool beneath a contemporary Scandinavian-style roof. There’s a lovely conservatory, where you can drink and dine, and the bedrooms are both chic and traditional, with crisp bathrooms. One sought-after room has a secret passage, while another is panelled, containing an original wig closet. And so past and present are perfectly united.
Doubles from £119
+44 (0)1730 816911; hshotels.co.uk
Polo match at Cowdray Park, the home of British Polo and the most glorious setting for a picnic.
The signature dish, twice baked Sussex cheddar soufflé with double cream and mange tout.
Pop into Lower Lodge Candles for gorgeous, best of British, hand poured candles.
CLAIM TO FAME
The hotel has a prized Christmas pudding recipe that dates back decades – you can join them for Stir Up Sunday, when they share the secret.
Want to find out more? Visit the hotel's website.
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