Buxted Park is a beautiful Georgian House with a contemporary twist, set in 300 acres of glorious grounds overlooking Ashdown Forest. We were invited to the hotel to view the refurbishment and discuss Hand Picked Hotels 'green' policy. (www.handpicked.co.uk)
I was fortunate enough to be allocated a Master Suite in the main house which was stunning. Black and Plum decor, three huge windows (with seats) overlooking the grounds and forest, 42 inch plasma screen and all the usual amenities. The bathroom was large with lots of towels and toiletries.
My colleagues stayed in the new wing of the hotel which has just been completely refurbished. The rooms are contemporary in design, gold colour scheme in rooms overlooking the front of the building, green/leafy colour scheme overlooking the grounds to the rear. Very comfortable, light and bright, ideal for a couple of nights. I would have been very happy even if I had been allocated one of these.
The meeting space is very well-appointed, flooded with natural daylight, good high ceilings, Wi-Fi access...everything you need in a conference room.
We had drinks in the Crystal Bar and dinner in the restaurant. The restaurant is small and intimate, with a striking violet colour scheme with some very clever black and white photographs of the house on the walls. We had a booth in the restaurant which was perfect for four, gave the feeling of being tucked away, very pleasant room to spend an evening in.
The food was delicious, good country house cooking but again with a contemporary twist. I can highly recommend the Scallops, Fillet of Beef and Chocolate Fondant...washed down with lots of lovely wine!
There was a wedding on whilst we were there however, it had no impact on our stay. The hotel put up very polite signs reminding wedding guests that certain areas of the hotel i.e. bar/restaurant are for hotel patrons only, so we had absolutely no problem with it at all.
Hand Picked are very keen to make their hotels as environmentally friendly as they possibly can. As they are a relatively small chain, produce can be sourced locally and they use organic wherever possible. All gardens/lawns are nourished with recycled water, linen napkins as opposed to paper are always used and staff are trained to turn of all lights and heating when not in use. A very nice touch that they have added, which I have never seen before - when you open the balcony doors in the bedrooms the air-conditioning cuts out...nice!
Overall, Buxted Park is a delightful place to hold an event, very comfortable bedrooms and meeting space, good food and attentive staff...what more do you need? Especially when you know your event is having the minimum possible impact on the environment.