The Alter Eagles tribute band headlined Saturday night and although they were the advertised highlight of the break, in my opinion they shared the limelight with many other facets of this lovely venue on the North Wales coast.
For me, the staff has been the real revelation, and you can see that it’s not just a job for them, but a vocation that they embrace with passion, and the family atmosphere between colleagues is palpable.
Guests are made very welcome here and, although it’s not the biggest room at Warner, it was one of the warmest for me. I’m not saying one of the biggest because, unlike its sister hotels, Bodelwyddan Castle has only one restaurant – but watch this space because I’ll come back to it.
Originally built in 1461 as a mansion by the Humphreys family, the property remained with their descendants for many years, and the castellation aspect was completed in the 1860s by the lord of the manor then in place to appease his future wife who said she wouldn’t marry him if there was just one mansion left!
After many uses as a First World War hospital, British Army officers’ mess during World War II and then a school, the castle ended up in the custody of the National Trust. The castle – at least part of it – was acquired by Warner Leisure Hotels in 1993, but very recently the company completed the purchase of the whole site.
So here is the exciting part. Work is due to begin soon to sympathetically repurpose the rest of the well-maintained, Grade II listed castle, with an alternative à la carte venue and historic bedrooms among the ideas.
So what can you expect here? The answer is what you want. If you just want to relax, take in the beautiful scenery (Snowdonia is on the doorstep), do it. Perhaps stroll the peaceful wooded promenade and the elegantly manicured and manicured walled gardens with views to die for.
Step it up a bit with a game of table tennis, croquet or golf putting – just use the equipment.
Maybe you fancy a bit more action, so don’t forget that archery and rifle shooting sessions* are all included in the price (*rifles were in progress of renovation at the time of writing and therefore were not available, but they will probably fire on all cylinders during your break!)
Also included for free for guests is a gym, swimming pool, sauna, tropicarium and steam room (try the dip bucket if you dare!) and for that extra little treat, treat yourself to a spa session for an additional fee. . I enjoyed a hot stone experience for the first time, in which smooth, heated basalt stones are used by the masseur to create a warming and incredibly soothing back massage.
We stayed in one of the sumptuous garden pavilions of the chateau, with a spacious lounge with large screen TV, fridge and tea/coffee making facilities. A hallway housing cabinets, a complimentary safe and iron/ironing board for guests leads you to the modern bathroom with a sensor-controlled night light – perfect for that nighttime call of the wild!
A king size bed awaits you in the bedroom, again with a flat screen TV, and a hair dryer in its case next to a wall width mirror was much appreciated by my wife.
As lodge guests we received a welcome pack of snacks and our tea tray was replenished daily with biscuits and fresh milk added for good measure.
Meals are typically Warner – excellent quality and a good choice for all. Dishes are always brought to the table unless you’re plump for the daily roast where a carver serves your meat and you help yourself to vegetables and the like. It’s also a do-it-yourself breakfast, but other dishes like eggs Benedict, poached eggs and scrambled tofu can be ordered from the kitchen.
For an added experience I can heartily recommend the Afternoon Tea, where you can have tea every day or be brave and try some of the specialty blends in the jars on the table – English Breakfast, Lemon Licorice green, Moroccan mint and spicy blueberry tart to name a few. WARNING: Be prepared for arguably the biggest selection of cakes you’ve ever seen and indeed a doggy bag was needed to finish some of the treats in a later session.
During our break, the entertainment was particularly good. Friday night saw (for those who remember!) Opportunity Knocks legend Bernie Flint, who holds the record for most consecutive wins in the series, more than Les Dawson and Lena Zavaroni, and his powerful voice. was completed with a great comedy.
Sunday night saw big act Endless Lionel, whose tribute to Motown legend Richie had the audience both on their feet and in stitches.
If you feel like venturing out, Rhyl is just minutes away to dip your toes in the Irish Sea, and Colwyn Bay, Conwy and Llandudno are particularly scenic seaside towns with the latter just a 20-minute drive away. and the others even less.
Along the way, we spotted Gwrych Castle, used in the TV program I’m A Celebrity… and entry prices are just £10 for adults and £5 for children.
Finally, back to Saturday’s entertainment and music by the Eagles, one of my favorites, and all the best songs you’d want to hear, including arguably their biggest hit, Hotel California.
And again, the lyrics of the song describe Bodelwyddan Castle perfectly. ‘Any time of the year, you can find it here’.
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This notice was published: 2022-05-01 12:26:55