Nestled in the tourist honeypot of Bowness-On-Windermere, this 19th century hotel, once a ‘water cure’ hotel where people came to rest and recharge, has certainly not lost its ability to do just that .
Following a multi-million pound refurbishment, Hotel Ro tastefully blends the traditional and the modern, resulting in a harmonious and pleasant decor. Sometimes you could be forgiven for thinking you’re in a downtown boutique hotel with faux flower walls and brightly colored furniture dotted around, all subtly complementing the surrounding views of Lake Windermere.
Location – 9/10
Sitting in its own grounds, The Ro is ideally located, close enough to the main street of Bowness but perfectly positioned above the town, allowing you to immerse yourself in the wondrous views of the Lake District. All major attractions are within a 10 minute walk from the hotel. The world of Beatrix Potter, Lake Windermere and lake cruises, shops, bars and restaurants. Transport links are also very accessible and Windemere Station, which connects to the West Coast Main Line, is a 30 minute walk away.
Rooms – 8/10
There are 87 rooms to choose from, ranging from compact Snug and Cozy rooms to the Ro suite. The contemporary decor of the hotel is reflected in the rooms with subtle tones and clean lines, a luxury without frills. For my stay, I was in one of four very spacious Super Lake View Balcony rooms which offered enviable and uninterrupted views of Lake Windermere and the sunsets from the balcony. Attention to detail was what you would expect with a range of essentials on hand – Nespresso coffee machine, bathroom with walk-in shower with luxury toiletries, bathrobe, fridge and smart TV that can be linked to your phone.
Food/drink – 7/10
The Ro offers all day dining with a good range of balanced local produce with much loved classics such as the 10oz Rib Eye Steak, 6oz Marrow Bone Beef Burger and Haddock in a beer batter with triple-cooked fries. Breakfast is a self-service hot and cold buffet with tea and coffee provided by a machine which left you a bit disappointed. The restaurant is tastefully decorated but felt a bit bereft of ambiance and although the food was plentiful it lacked finesse.
Overall – 8/10
The Ro prides itself on being a new kind of hotel that does things differently and sometimes it was hard to establish what it was. If you’re looking for a hotel that has a great location and does it right, the Ro won’t disappoint. If, however, you want absolute luxury, fine dining and value for money, The Ro just misses the mark.
Related: The Langham Hotel