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Hot Hotel Review: Limewood, New Forest, Hampshire

Sometimes you just need a little luxe in your life. To be pampered, looked after and reminded that yes, actually, you really are rather fab. Which is why a night or two at Limewood, the luxury boutique retreat in the heart of the New Forest is exactly the kind of pep-me-up we all need……


Something for the weekend

From my dream J Crew swimsuit via the perfect Mango summer cover-up – and a Jamie Oliver fish stew. It’s a sweet, short weekend lust list from my Cornish holiday…


Somewhere for the weekend?

Sitting with a friend over coffee this week, we discussed the pure joy of a weekend away. Without children! In Paris! Who wouldn’t love that? In fact, who doesn’t love a weekend away full stop? A lovely hotel, an escape from your daily routine, time out to relax – it’s basically a recharge for the soul. There are of course, several types of weekend away – all fabulous, all a little different – for example, the couples-only-escape-from-the-kids weekend, the friends-only-escape-from-the-husband weekend, the mother/daughter weekend, the mother/son weekend…. And then there’s the family weekend away. Arguably less relaxing, but none-the-less enjoyable (bar the times when the novovirus strikes), the family weekend away is great because even though you’re up early and on-the-go all day, you’re still away from your to-do list, your pile of washing, your work, that nagging bit of painting you keep meaning to do…It’s just you, your husband and kids – hopefully having fun. In that spirit, my weekend wish list is ALL about heading off for a night or two. In fact, as I type, Natasha is doing just that, spending a glorious night away with her best friend at the to-die-for Limewood hotel in Hampshire. Now,…


End of summer resolutions

As far as I’m concerned, there is nothing to lament about the end of summer. I even embrace the faint melancholy. (I have been humming Abba’s ‘Our Last Summer’ as I research this post. The other weekend, I went to my dear friend Nina’s hen party (very civilised it was, too) and we watched Mamma Mia (a film I have already ‘fessed up to loving, so less of the sniggering at the back). Since then I have been unable to stop singing Abba tunes. I am the best of Abba – with far, far less vocal ability than Amanda Seyfried or Meryl Streep. Alas, I fear I am more Pierce Brosnan.) I love the last of summer sun, the autumnal nip (with promises of frosty nights, jumpers and cosy nights) in the air on crisp mornings which segue into still-warm days, the glut of seasonal vegetables (well, in my parents’ garden and the farmers’ markets, not in my teeny garden). I just love the turn of the seasons. When I was younger, we lived in California for three years: do you know that there is virtually nothing approaching a proper season there? Just hot and slightly less hot, with a…


Anyone in the mood for some sunshine?

I was planning to post something on the retro-chic destination that is the Isle of Wight. But, as I sat, chilled to the bone, staring outside at the sodden sky, I thought blow that. What I need now, what I really need now is a hairdryer hot, sun-soaked holiday and as there is no chance of that happening in the next few weeks, realistically months, I’ll settle for some gorgeous, sun-soaked pictures instead. I could look at them and dream of lying around on a sun-lounger, sipping rose and gently turning my lily-white limbs that perfect shade of soft golden brown (yes, I’m afraid I am one of those increasingly dated -and soon to be wrinkled – beasts who likes to lie in the sun – I’m positively reptilian, my cold blood NEEDS it). I could reminisce about one of my quite-possibly-best-jobs-ever, a week spent reviewing boutique hotels in Provence for Tatler (tough gig). And then I thought, why not tell you about three of those stunning boutique hotels in Provence? So here goes, these hotels are knock-your-socks-off gorgeous. Great for long child-free weekends, they’re too small for children or week-long sojourns. Book now for summer. Book now for next…