A Minimoon In The Lakes: Romantic Grasmere

Julia Braime

We are in the thick of wedding show season here at Brides Up North, but never too busy to squeeze in a little getaway. This time round, we headed for Grasmere in the Lake District to put our feet up at Victorian House Hotel – a self-proclaimed antidote to chain hotel fatigue.

Upon arrival at Victorian House Hotel, we were warmly welcomed into what would have once been the living room – no receptions desks needed here. We stayed in the Shepherds Hut, which is tucked away in the back garden of the hotel next to the River Rothay. Small, but spacious, the hut is well equipped with all the trappings of a boutique hotel, from cosy, comfy bed to traditional roll top bath. Outside, there is a small seating area, complete with fire pit and logs– a perfect place for a romantic evening to snuggle under a blanket at night, looking up at the stars, with the river babbling away in the background.

However, if the Shepherds Hut doesn’t take your fancy, Victorian House offers a wealth of other rooms, from cosy doubles to stargazer rooms. If you’re travelling with a four-legged friend (trust us, we now understand how important this is!), they also have special rooms for dogs, complete with an outdoor hot water tap for washing off any muddy paws after a day’s exploring!

Victorian House’s stargazer rooms offer floor to ceiling windows and give you a breathtaking view over the fells. Complete with in-room telescope, you can check out those skies further, or just curl up in bed and gaze out at the night sky – either way, the perfect romantic setting to spend a night.

Towards the rear of the house, there is a large, spacious dining area, where Victorian House offer both breakfast, light bites and tapas dishes over the weekend.

The breakfast here was exactly what was required before a hard days walking – it’s not too often a two course breakfast feels mandatory. However Victorian House offer up a selection of pastries, delicious overnight oat Granola pots, all followed up with plentiful breakfast options – we naturally opted for the full Cumbrian breakfast, large enough to keep us fuelled; tasty enough to ensure we ordered the same on the second day.

The Garden Room is also the perfect place to put your feet up and enjoy a drink at their bar, whether it be a hand-crafted cosmo, or locally sourced craft beer – the hotel are committed to offering visitors a taste of the Lakes.

Should an evening meal not be available at the hotel, you will find The Yan Bistro a short drive or taxi ride away from the hotel. Nestled at the foot of the hills, just outside Grasmere, The Yan Bistro is a family run restaurant, offering a delightful seasonal menu and local Cumbrian ingredients. Offering all the classics you’d expect, most have an exciting, modern twist to them.

The venue décor has a real, relaxed apres-ski vibe, inspired by the owners. Our evening started in the bar, with two excellent chilli margaritas, ordered from their specials menu. The Yan offer a wide variety of cocktails, and an extensive wine list – which was sampled with a Provencal Rose once those margarita glasses were empty (it didn’t take long).

For starters, we sampled the lamb sliders and the Bhaji bite, both full of flavour. Our main course was a difficult choice. Rather than opting for our own, we tried one of The Yan’s sharing boards, the Indi-Yan. One of three, the sharing boards offer a unique take on some classic or alternative meals. Fantastically presented, our Indi-Yan came complete with Tandoori Cumbrian Pork belly which just fell apart, Bombay potatoes, flatbreads, dahl and, yes…. more bahji’s! An utterly delicious modern take on an Indian, matching the setting in its entirety.ne.

We finished our three courses with an excellent cheeseboard – yes, with more wiThe Yan’s delightful dessert wine flight gave us chance to sample two ports and a dessert wine, washing down three local British cheeses, finishing off an all-round excellent experience.

Having never explored this stunning little village, we were excited to pull on our walking boots and explore Grasmere , somewhere it turns out is fitting of all the postcards you could buy in the Lake District.

Quaint slate cottages, thatched roof pubs – you name it, it’s got it all. Sitting on the shore of Lake Grasmere, you have the choice of watersports around you, or a wide variety of walks, both simple meanders around the lake, or more challenging hikes into the fells. You are also a short drive (or longer walk) from Ambleside, with Windermere and Bowness not too much further on – everything you would want out a trip to the Lakes is right on the doorstep of Victorian House Hotel.

The Lakes is the textbook blend of scenery, beauty, activity and romance, making it the perfect destination for wedding couples or wedding parties to get away.

If you are looking for a romantic pre-wedding break, or mini-moon before jetting off, choose Grasmere. And if you choose Grasmere, most definitely choose Victorian House Hotel.

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