13th August 2020
It’s not often that I come across a hotel that has a love affair with wallpaper as deep as my own so it goes without saying that I was pleased to give Hampton Manor in Solihull a visit.
Hampton Manor is primarily a foodies hotel (Michelin Star restaurant, wine tasting included, kitchen garden, smokehouse restaurant) but I was here to sample the wallpaper and decor.
The hotel is run and owned by James and Fjona Hill. Fjona, previously a doctor, has really put her stamp on the interiors and has recently updated the vast majority of rooms with Morris and Co wallpaper and fabrics. Paying attention to the arts and crafts history of the impressive manor house Fjona has created a hotel which has a nod to its history with some quirky modern updates.
As a lover of Morris and Co and a limited number of rooms in my house it’s great to venture out to see some other wallpapers in the wild, but the worry with using a lot of the same designer is that it can come off a bit ‘fan-girly’ . Luckily the mix of modern furniture and variation of wallpapers in the communal rooms makes the overall design of the hotel well rounded.
We stayed in the very luxurious “cottage” (cottage owners everywhere give their own cottages the side-eye) which is the epitome of #cottagecore chic and features Morris and Co in every pretty much every room including Acanthus, Pimpernel, Strawberry Thief, Compton, Willow and Blackthorn. Quite a few feature walls (!) with some rooms given a 3 wall treatment – would have loved the full commitment of that last wall papered at least in one of the rooms. The cottage is huge – 4 large bedrooms, kitchen, living room, snug and dining room with a beautiful garden. Good bit of tech too – and we were able to ‘work from home’ without any problems.
Finishing touches including a welcome pack covered in Morris and Co Willow and a “Morris by himself” coffee table book.
Outside of the cottage the other bedrooms are in the main manor house and the rooms I stuck my head into all included some Morris wallpaper – mainly as a feature wall behind the beds. If I stayed in these rooms it would be nice to see the paper whilst lying in bed as opposed to it being a decorative feature when you walk in but doing the feature wall this way certainly has impact.
I spotted some lights by Pooky lights and lovely local ceramic wear dotted around.
The hotel is keen to focus on local and artisan designers and there were some lovely examples of glass, ceramics, and reupholstered furniture in House of Hackney and Morris and Co fabrics.
It’s not all Morris here, and decor highlights included the amazingly detailed De Gournay wallpaper in the dining room with embroided birds. Above and below the wallpaper there is some original arts and crafts wood panelling. What a treat to dine in such a space – food was nice too (understatement). The middle of the dining room featured a long table which was carved from one piece of wood for a communal dining feel and this really gave the room a buzz in the evening and the vibe was relaxed but high end.
I also loved the Nyetimber summer house which had a Morris and Co Strawberry thief theme with menus and cushions in the fabric. As well as Nyetimber which the hotel has a partnership with cream teas and breakfast also served here.
There are big plans for hotel in 2021 with a new set of rooms and additional restaurant – cant wait to see. Hopefully there will be a fully wallpapered room.
Hampton Manor are currently (14.8.20) offering 2 night staycations for £360 per person (based on double occupancy) inclusive of breakfast, 2 dinners and wine tasting).
Mention ‘nofeaturewalls’ on booking for a complimentary glass of Nyetimber on arrival.
Insta – @hamptonmanor