After travelling down a remote country lane surrounded by woodland we finally glimpsed the beautifully situated Ox Pasture Hall Hotel.
The sight of the venue quickly banished any lingering motorway boredom and as we drove up the long lavender-lined driveway we breathed a sigh of relief.
Horses grazed nearby, a friendly cat reclined in the garden sunshine and nestled among 17 acres of gardens and grounds the luxury country house was picture-postcard pretty.
Cheerful staff welcomed us and took us to one of the hall’s luxury suites - a classic room with beautiful views over the manicured gardens and a particularly impressive bathroom with ‘his and hers’ wash hand basins and a walk-in shower as big as my bathroom at home.
Mid afternoon was time for a decadent, homemade Yorkshire afternoon tea for two in the hotel’s Bistro bar.
We tucked into finger sandwiches, cakes and scones served on a tiered cake stand and washed it all down with cups of tea.
A much-needed leg stretch gave us a chance to explore the hall’s grounds, made up of a winding outdoor terrace, suntrap courtyards and thatched verandas, set in the North York Moors National Park.
We had high expectations for our evening meal in the hotel’s Courtyard Restaurant, which boasts Scarborough’s only two-rosettes for culinary excellence and a Michelin recommendation.
Imaginative and creative dishes jumped out from the menu and we plumped for a starter of salt-baked beetroot - a work of art which transformed the humble root vegetable, turned it into a sorbet and served it with carrot and orange. All very tasty and it looked wonderful on the plate. I enjoyed a crispy tartlet with mushrooms, pea puree and truffle gnocchi for main course while my partner tucked in to slow cooked belly pork and homemade black pudding. For dessert we shared an inspired ‘Caribbean Cocktail’ which included coconut panacotta, mango rice pudding and passion fruit sorbet. It was all delicious and with impeccable service we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.
A comfortable night’s sleep in a huge bed followed and the next morning we were ready for yet more eating - this time a full English breakfast.
Remote enough to switch off completely, but only ten minutes’ drive from Scarborough, Ox Pasture really is a haven of relaxation and tranquillity.
By Julia Rodgerson
One night stay in a classic double (with dinner, bed and breakfast) from £150 per night.
Deluxe double (with dinner, b&b) from £180 per night.
Luxury Suite (with dinner, b& b) from £290 per night.
For more go to http://www.oxpasturehallhotel.com/