Nothing says Christmas more than being woken up with a champagne cocktail and Santa walking around wishing everyone a Merry Christmas.
For the last 15 or so years, my family and I have stayed at the Lodore Falls Hotel and Spa in the Borrowdale Valley for Christmas, and we couldn’t imagine it any other way.
There’s something magical about driving through the Borrowdale Valley on December 23 and seeing the hotel lit up in all its Christmas glory.
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We stay from December 23 and check out on December 27, and it’s like something from a Christmas film from the moment you step foot through the door.
As you pull up outside the hotel, it’s lit up for all to see, you’re greeted by decorations galore from polar bears and reindeers to wonderfully decorated trees.
We stay in a Lake View room and there’s something relaxing about waking up each morning, walking out onto the balcony and looking out over Derwentwater.
December 23 is a relaxed evening and we dined in the Mizu Pan Asian restaurant and it’s safe to say the food was delicious – getting us excited for what the next few days would bring.
I had Teriyaki Salmon Skewers to start followed by a Lentil and Chickpea Dhal curry with a piece of pan-fried cod on top, my mouth is still watering thinking about it.
Christmas Eve is where the festive celebrations really begin. After a hearty cooked breakfast, we decided to go for a walk around Derwentwater before coming back and enjoying gin afternoon tea provided by the hotel.
The conservatory and function room were bustling with people enjoying sandwiches, quiche, sausage rolls and enough deserts to give you toothache, as well as a gin or two.
After the afternoon tea, people relax by the fires or retire to their rooms to get ready for cocktails and the welcome speeches.
People gather in the conservatory to meet the staff who will be looking after them during their stay, this was then followed by a three course meal in the dining room.
To describe the food in one word would be, outstanding. Chicken Liver Parfait, followed by Venison and Dauphinoise potatoes and topped off with a sticky toffee pudding – wow. I think by this point I was in a food coma.
I was ready to go back to the room and lie down in the massive comfy bed, but I didn’t want to pass up on a trip down to the Lake for the bonfire.
The rooms really are exceptional, we stayed in the Derwent Suite, equipped with its own fire, side room with two single beds as well as the main room and bathroom it really was like something off the brochure.
I slept like a log, the blackout curtains meant I couldn’t even see my hand in front of my face – but it made the perfect setting for a good night’s sleep.
Christmas morning came and we were woken to the distant sound of festive music. We were greeted at the bottom of the stairs with a champagne cocktail before entering breakfast and, yet again, eating and eating and eating.
Now was the time for presents, I was totally spoiled this year, as always.
For Christmas lunch we had other family members join us, so nine of us made our way into the dining room for a festive meal.
I opted for duck this year, turkey is nice and traditional but I just decided to have something different. Two thick chunks were set in front of me, after already devouring three courses, and I still managed to finish the lot.
After our Christmas lunch, we decided to take a short walk to the Lake, to try and combat some of the damage.
At night, the festive fun continues, after a Lakeland buffer (which you really don’t need but eat anyway), we took part in the quiz.
Although we didn’t win it was fun taking part.
Boxing Day came, and by this point, we were starting to get really full so decided to go for a walk, after six miles we headed back to the Lodore for more food.
We spent the afternoon relaxing on the sofas in front of the fire.
There’s something about the Lodore where you feel at home enough to sit with your slippers on and cosy up on the sofa in front of the fire.
At night, we got dressed up for the last time before heading in for a six-course meal, the steak and lobster really were delicious but by this point, I just couldn’t face any more food and I ended up going to bed in a food coma.
December 27 came and it was home time. It was sad to leave, but it’s only a see you later, until next year when we’ll be back again.
For us, Christmas wouldn’t be the same.
Prices start from £950 for a standard room for four nights and increase from there.
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