The stylish interiors and layout make you feel at home from the moment you walk into the The Runnymede on Thames. And what is immediately apparent is the average-looking size from the outside is clearly at odds with the actual proportions within. And thats not a bad thing when you consider the array of facilities that the hotel has to fit into its four walls. Bags deposited in the room and we were taken on a quick tour of the hotel.
There was a perfect blend of common sense facilities and design with lovely little quirks in decor which, more often than not, reflected the riverside location. And what a location! Looking out over the River Thames you could be mistaken for thinking you are in the middle of the countryside, and this incredible setting certainly inspires feelings of relaxation associated with a more rural setting. However, The Runnymede is actually easily accessible by air, road and train with Heathrow Airport a few miles away and the M25 on your doorstep. The train station was a few minutes away and costs less than a fiver door-to-door.
This four-star hotel, close to historic Runnymede, is clearly an all-round entertainment venue with something for everyone. So what does it have to offer?
Families were abound whilst we were there and, unsurprisingly so, as they are very well-catered for. The smaller members are spoilt for choice with facilities including a playground, garden games and an indoor pool. For the more energetic grown-ups, the gym has all the latest equipment plus there’s an outdoor pool (summer only), tennis courts and riverside walks to keep you occupied. The spa is spotless and comes with an indoor exercise pool, marble eucalyptus steam room, whirlpool and pine sauna. Why not treat yourself to a spa treatment during your stay? With literally dozen’s of treatments to choose from, there really is something for everyone, even the menfolk. Should you need it, the hotel’s babysitting service is also on hand to look after your little ones whilst you have some well-earned downtime.
We retired to the bar area before dinner and it was a buzz of activity. Birthdays were being celebrated whilst we were there, and hearing neighbouring tables joining in to sing Happy Birthday paid testament to the relaxed and friendly atmosphere. The Runnymede is also the perfect party venue for friends and family whatever the celebration. Weddings are also catered for with the hotel’s experienced Events team on hand to make your special day unforgettable, and with a tempting 10% off all new bookings for weddings between held now and April 2018, that might just be enough to rival a certain Royal wedding taking place at nearby Windsor Castle next year.
The Thomson & Scott Skinny Champagne and Skinny Prosecco have recently been added to the drinks list in the hotel. We both tried a Skinny Prosecco as an aperitif before dinner in the Lock Bar and Kitchen. We expected to “taste the difference” given the low sugar content but we didn’t. It was sublime and, given the skinny nature of the drink, guilt-free.
Our food order was taken from the new Autumn menu which includes grilled Surrey farm rib eye steak with big chips and a béarnaise or green peppercorn sauce, The Lock Kitchen pie and stone bass with octopus, saffron, lemon and parsley. Having debated our choices over a superb Skinny Mojito we settled on the roasted vegetable soup and scallops for starters and followed with the rib-eye steak. The food couldn’t be faulted and was washed down with a lovely glass of Merlot.
After a good nights sleep it was time for breakfast. A welcome attention to detail was being shown around the breakfast buffet. There was something for everyone; hot food, pastries, fruit, smoked salmon. We plumped for the full English with some pastries and coffee served to the table.
If we didn’t have to shoot off we could have taken advantage of what the local area has to offer by visiting one of the many local attractions; Windsor Castle, Legoland, and Thorpe Park are all nearby.
Instead we settled for a relaxing walk down by the Thames and watched the world go by before reluctantly packing our bags and heading back to reality.