This spring/ summer, we’re uncovering more destinations for our Take Me To series, seeking out distinctive havens that inspire us to bask in the natural beauty of golden, long-light days – and also happen to host our land&water collections.
Leaving The Cotswolds, our next stop is Stanwell House in the lively maritime town of Lymington on the Hampshire coast. Standing between the wilds of the ancient New Forest and the salty air of the Solent, this boutique hotel – one of the Independent’s “hottest new hotels” in 2023 – nods firmly towards both land and water.
Just a short stroll from the harbour, Stanwell House is a grand monochrome building on the high street of this bustling 13th century market town. Pairing Georgian splendour with simple elegance, this historic house is fresh yet traditional, invigorating yet comforting.
Enter and you’ll feel instantly relaxed, yet excited to explore. The décor – recently reimagined by interior designer JoJo McNamara – brings spring inside with floral walls, vibrant oranges, pops of pinks and plants everywhere you look. McNamara’s designs evoke a bright and modern feel, while retaining the character and original features of this beautiful Georgian building.
Sink into one of the many plush, velvet chairs and while away an hour or two with an ice-cold cocktail. Or take a stroll around the hidden garden bursting with seasonal blooms – and all set to have an outdoor kitchen and eating area for next summer.
Stanwell House’s surroundings define its identity. From the elaborate leaves, branches and waves that make up its logo; to the local furniture restoration, upholstery and signwriters contributing to its craftsmanship and aesthetic; and the artists that line its walls with stories of the sea and nearby nature reserves.
Guests can choose from three different dining experiences. The casual Orangery (where sunshine streams through a huge glass ceiling), the laid-back Salt Bar (with restful, cosy corners) or fine dining in the Samphire restaurant. Local food is the common thread between all three eateries, as you deliberate over Lymington-picked crab sandwiches, Poole lobster and Isle of Wight tomatoes – fresh off the ferry.
When you’ve had your fill, retreat to one of the 27 rooms and run a deep bath. In contrast to the vivacious lounge areas, the bedrooms are designed with calming blues and natural garden greens, calling you to unwind. Watch the twilight through sash windows behind a leafy green backdrop, and soak up the evening buzz from the street below as you start planning tomorrow’s adventures.
Stanwell House doesn’t just showcase nature; it also seeks to protect it. Milk comes in reusable glass jars instead of single-use packaging, the kitchens have recently been upgraded for energy-efficiency and a better working environment for chefs, and there’s a smokery in the kitchen to minimise waste and preserve food as much as possible. You’ll also find our refillable land&water products in every bathroom, created from sustainable recipes and ethically sourced natural ingredients. Lymington also has a railway station, so you can breeze in by train and explore everything on foot.
Feeling lazy? Wander down to the harbour and dangle your legs over the wall as you watch the boats come in. Feeling sprightly? Take a trip to the New Forest National Park. Walk with wild ponies, plunge into clear rivers and follow well-trodden trails through wide-open heathlands and beneath thousand-year-old oaks.
Or if coastal air is what you’re craving, hire a bike from town and wheel onto the Solent Way. Inhale the salty breeze as you fly (like the rare birds you’ll find here) along the foreshore to where the river meets the sea. Finish your ride at the beach for a refreshing dip and scoop of ice cream, or two.
If you’re staying a few days, you might even want to cross the water to explore the secluded sandy coves and picnic spots on the Isle of Wight – just a 40-minute ferry ride from Lymington harbour.
“The synergy between our location between the forest and the sea just felt so perfect with the name and ethos of land&water. The packaging has a simple, modern but timeless styling, which is in-keeping with the decor of the hotel. We also loved land&water’s commitment to ethical and sustainable practices.” – Lisa Bartlett, hotel manager
PRODUCT ESSENCE OF STANWELL HOUSE:
Relax and reminisce on times spent in fresh-air forests, flower-filled meadows and sea-swept shorelines, breathing in the awakening aromas of our land&water reed diffuser.
Infused with warm mandarin and cool mint essential oils, it revitalises your spaces with a fresh, natural scent – evoking laid-back, balmy days spent outside.
Mint – the Greek herb of hospitality – is also a key ingredient in the ‘Stanwell’s Garden’ cocktail; a refreshing combination of Hendrick’s gin with elderflower liqueur, mixed with cucumber, mint, lime and apple juice… (See our Instagram for the full recipe.)