3 ISSUES FOR JUST £3 Subscribe to Cheshire Life today click here

Short break - Bodysgallen Hall, Llandudno

PUBLISHED: 01:00 14 September 2017 | UPDATED: 10:40 14 September 2017

Bodysgallen Hall drawing room.

Bodysgallen Hall drawing room.

not Archant

Nestling on a hill minutes from the centre of Llandudno is Bodysgallen Hall, a country house hotel with history stretching back over 700 years. Review by Louise Allen-Taylor

Bodysgallen Hall in the snowBodysgallen Hall in the snow

We are wandering around the gardens of Bodysgallen Hall, seeing globe artichokes waving in the breeze, figs budding ponderously on the tree, rows of tomatoes, mange tout and leeks flourishing. In the well-clipped parterre, the scents of sage, rosemary and thyme rise as we pass by.

Hours later, in a dining room overlooking these gardens, we sit down to a meal featuring some of this bounty. Delicate young leeks adorn my starter of truffled ox cheek sausage with creamed king oyster mushrooms and truffle jus; it’s an umami feast of deep, musty flavours, another deft plate of food from head chef John Williams.

Across the table, mackerel poached in orange oil comes with crab, mango and coriander salad - a light, fresh sea breeze of a dish. Those leeks show up again in my main course: a flaky cod fillet, poached in butter with a feisty lobster and herb raviolo swimming in a foamy lobster sauce.

Our other main is succulent Welsh lamb, slow-cooked with fennel pollen, with smoked butternut squash puree and roasted artichoke, lush fondant potato and shallots. It’s the kind of dish which epitomises the new-old understated ideal of ‘modern British’ cuisine.

Both our desserts are intriguing in taste and texture: one featuring a warm chocolate madeleine with fennel ice cream, the other a ‘snow egg’ - poached meringue with rhubarb, resembling an egg shell from which spills a vanilla custard yolk, all sitting on a cava snow, a slushie for grown-ups.

After our three-course dinner (£57.50 per head) we head upstairs past paintings of old nobles and the odd stag’s head, dodging beneath door lintels created when humans beings were smaller, to our room. On the way, we pass the entrance to the winding stone stair case to the watchtower, built around 1250 to provide early warning of attack on Conwy castle. It’s the heart of this hall, whose construction spanned seven centuries, as evidenced by date stones from 1620, 1765, 1894 and 1905.

Bodysgallen Hall reeks of history, with its heavy latched front door, the latin motto of the Mostyn family over the fireplace in the first floor lounge, acres of dark wood pannelling and the charmingly wonky lines of a building which has had so many centuries to settle. 

But, sold by the Mostyns in 1969, bought by Historic House Hotels in 1980, and now owned by the National Trust, this is a grade 1 listed historic house which also serves as a 21st century hotel. Cottage accommodation sensitive to the ambience of the hall has been added, as has a spa, just a short stroll from the main hall.

Bodysgallen Hall and Spa is on The Royal Welsh Way, Llandudno, North Wales, LL30 1RS, tel 01492 584466.

For details about dining at Bodysgallen Hall, the spa and accommodation in the hall or the cottages, visit www.bodysgallen.com

More from Out & About

Yesterday, 00:00

The first ever National GetOutside Day takes place on Sunday 30 September with the aim of getting 1 million people active outdoors across the UK.

Read more

Want a des res in Hale or Hale Barns? You are not alone. Why is this such a sought-after area?

Read more
Wednesday, September 12, 2018

This month’s walk takes us from Lymm to Thelwall and back, calling at a unusual ferry port.

Read more
Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Wilmslow is one of the most desirable places to live in the region. Is it because of the beautiful countryside that surrounds it? These walks that are all within a five mile radius of the suburb suggests it could be the case.

Read more
Monday, September 10, 2018

Our county boasts a whole host of historic properties, each complete with fascinating stories, beautiful grounds and lavish interiors.

Read more

Malpas residents are preparing special commemorations to remember the fallen soldiers listed on the Malpas War Memorial

Read more
Thursday, September 6, 2018

Fragrant flowers, fabulous garden designs and some poignant exhibits meant the 20th RHS Tatton Flower Show was blooming marvellous

Read more
RHS Tatton
Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Local Wildlife Sites cover about six per cent of the county and are vital to many declining species and habitats. Cheshire Wildlife Trust’s Rachel Giles explains the threats they face

Read more
Tuesday, September 4, 2018

A day combining idyllic weather and action on the field was enjoyed by over 100 guests at Cheshire Polo Club in Tarporley

Read more

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Topics of Interest

Food and Drink Directory

Subscribe or buy a mag today

Local Business Directory

Property Search