By Charmaine Hibbert
I had obviously seen images of Linthwaite House when they sent them through to go with this feature and I was looking forward to my stay here in the Lake District, but nothing can quite prepare you for when you walk into the gardens and see that view of Lake Windermere meandering its way through the hills. It’s just a shame it’s late afternoon on a grey day in late September, if it looks this stunning now, it must look majestic during the summer months especially with the sun setting over those hills.
One of the things that also struck me as I made my way around the beautiful gardens was the sculptures, you may already know about SIT by Angus Taylor which is perfectly positioned aside that view of Lake Windermere, but there are others dotted about the grounds including Striding Tiger by Dylan Lewis, which sits on top of an incline and Wild Albert by William Peers which is made of Italian marble that again has the lake as its backdrop and surrounded by wild flowers.
On my way up to my room I also spot Diana by Otto du Plessis in the trees near the path; bronze sculptures of a girl following a family of deer, there are many more sculptures dotted around the grounds for you to enjoy. The best sculpture of all is of Mother Nature and just outside my room they have placed a double seated swing that sits in the trees and looks down on the Lake; it was a place that I found myself being pulled to each evening to sit, contemplate and soak up the sheer beauty of my surroundings.
There are several room options here but my suite is part of the recently built complex that sits just above the main house. I was shown around my suite which was a tech lovers’ dream, controls for the lights have different levels of brightness, the double aspect floor to ceiling sliding doors that open by the press of a button in both the sitting room and bedroom, the louvre windows and its electronic cover and the corridor guide lights that are motion sensored during the night.
It’s time for the face dive into the fresh cotton pillows, the bed is firm which I like, with fresh cotton sheets and duvet. The suite is decorated in classic white with beige and brown furnishings and natural wood lampshades and the bathroom has marble finishes with walk in rainfall shower with natural stone tiling.
I know James wanted to visit here in September for the golf courses, for me it wasn’t the best timing as in October chef Simon Rogan will be opening his Henrock restaurant which will use locally sourced ingredients from his farm just 30-minutes away.
We walk down to the main house for dinner and are welcomed by the staff who let us choose where we would like to be seated, the restaurant has a nice relaxing feel to it and is decorated with some rich warm oranges, browns and greens again with a classic modern feel. After our drinks orders we are served an Amuse-bouche of fried green pepper with a creamy leek and rock salt filling, which glided down perfectly tantalising the taste buds to what is to follow.
While James started with the Oak Smoked Duck Breast I went for the Loch Duart Salmon three Ways, one was citrus marinated, one was poached and the final piece was spice roasted and was accompanied by sugar snap peas, créme fraiche. For me it was the perfect starter and showcased how you can cook salmon in three different ways giving a variety of different flavours.
Next came the Roast Cumbrian Lamb Loin which was accompanied with spinach, summer truffle, foie gras mousse and Périguex sauce with sides of King Irish roasted carrots and hand-cut potato wedges. The lamb was cooked to perfection, succulent and tender, what did surprise me was the gravy that it came with which was tasty, rich and really added to the enjoyment of the lamb with the flavours playing against each other.
For dessert – yes we did manage it!! – it had to be the Baked Apple which came as a crumble with blackberries and fresh custard, we both looked at each other with grins on our faces, you really can’t beat a good crumble. This wasn’t a traditional crumble, this dish was prepared with the baked apple on the outside with the crumble and blackberries at its heart, it was the perfect end to the day.
Unfortunately, I didn’t have time to sample the in-room spa treatments, but they are available on request.
The three days we spent at Linthwaite House were idyllic, the staff and service were excellent and very attentive without being overbearing, the rooms where beautifully appointed and designed perfectly to make the most of the views. The gardens and the boating lake added to the beauty of its surroundings, but it’s the position that Linthwaite House occupies and the way it sits above Lake Windermere that sets it apart.
If you are looking to unwind from this mad, fast paced world and soak in the very best of what Mother Nature has to offer and just sit and let your soul sing, you need to spend some time at Linthwaite House, your whole being will thank you for it.
T: 015394 88600