Yorkshire’s Only Five Star Hotel
I was astonished to learn The Grand Hotel and Spa, York is Yorkshire’s only five star hotel. We’re lucky enough to have so many luxury hotels here in God’s Own Country we really are spoilt, but the appeal of visiting a five-star hotel was completely enchanting, and I’ll admit, slightly petrifying given the invitation was for the whole family!
So once I’d made everyone brush their hair and wash their hands, properly, swapped their Heeley’s for sandals and had a quick pep-talk about using our ‘inside voices’, we set off on our adventure to York to explore what five-star actually looks like!
Beauty of the Heritage Building
I can report back that the hotel is indeed five-star worth of lovely; from the beauty and majesty of the building, to the welcome by the concierge, to the faultless service and attention to detail, and above all, the quality of the food!
The Grand Hotel and Spa, York , which opened in 2010, is located in what was the North Eastern Railway Company’s Headquarters, just the other side of the wall from the railway station in the city. And, as I have often done, a place you could easily walk by without realising a five-star gem lies within. But upon entering the building, via a red carpet to greetings of a bowler-hat wearing doorman you’re under no illusion that you’re now somewhere special.
The Rise Restaurant
We were escorted personally to the hotel’s newest restaurant, The Rise, which offers modern dining in a relaxed yet super-stylish setting and is headed up by award winning chef, Craig Atchinson.
I loved the design of the menu as it’s created around a ‘small-plate’ concept, which involves sharing bites of incredibly tasty food to create a fun, chilled and social way to enjoy dining together.
The Rise Menu
Having the menu set out in such a way is completely perfect for families. It’s one of my favourite ways to eat anyway (I always like to try a bit of what someone else has ordered!) and when you all get to share it really gets the kids into trying new foods and new tastes that they would never normally choose from a menu.
Mr P and I shared four dishes with sides of fries and bread, and the Smalls shared four between them too. Which was just the perfect amount all round.
The Duck Egg and Wild Mushrooms with Spinach and Truffle dressing was my total fave closely followed by the Grilled Tiger Prawns with sweet Paprika Mayonnaise. Although I’m sure they’re not a culinary match paired in heaven, they worked perfectly for me give they’re all my most loved foods!
The Crisp Middle White Pork Belly with White Beans and Rosemary Cream Apple was top of Mr P’s list of deliciousness for the day. Closely followed by the Poached Breast of Cornfed Chicken, baby Leek and Summer Truffle which also disappeared fairly quickly! The prices were all really reasonable too varying from £3.50 to £12.00, with our choices averaging around £8.00 a dish.
Children are so well looked after
One of the best things about dining at The Rise, along with it’s five star service, food quality and laid back atmosphere, was the care and attention that was paid to the children. The hotel are running a special offer throughout August which means kids eat for free for the whole month!
My fears about well behaved children were put to one side as soon as we walked in to the restaurant, as I could tell the Smalls were really put at their ease and we all felt we could settle back and enjoy our afternoon without the worry of pretention.
When we arrived the kids were each given a welcome pack, which contained a really thoughtfully put together creative booklet for them to enjoy. It was packed with fun bespoke word-searches which we all pertinent to Yorkshire and the Hotel, there were games and colouring in the book and the particular highlight of an envelope to put in all your souvenirs from your stay! My kids love a souvenir! ? It kept them content and quiet for the whole meal and we enjoyed almost two hours in the restaurant all really happily, just taking our time with a perfectly delivered service.
The children’s menu was thoughtfully created with all the classic choices, but to a really high standard. My three selected the Breaded Fish Goujons, the Crispy Spiced Chicken Breast and The Rise Mac and Cheese and an addition of Fruit Skewers too as part starter, part just ‘cos you can!
The menu was all really reasonably priced too, from £3.50 to £6.50 for the kids menu – I’ve paid much more for a setting half as nice before.
Puddings were high on everyones list. The Small Boy wolfed down his classic choice of Vanilla Ice Cream with chocolate sauce. The Rise Churros with salted caramel sauce were fought over – the best marker of good food going – and the Chocolate Delice and Yorkshire Blackberries with Yoghurt Sorbet also made the perfect end to our meal.
Director of Fun and Families
The Grand Hotel and Spa, York have really thought about the Smalls this season, they have recruited 14 year old Sam Pointon as ‘director of fun and families’ – which is maybe why they’ve really made children feel welcome at The Rise. Sam has been giving me a run for my money by vlogging himself about things to do in York for kids, so if you’re looking for ideas you can check them out on the Grand Hotel’s website.
The Rise is open from 7am till late seven days a week and has a sprinkling of live music to look out for too. I would highly recommend it and will certainly be back. The afternoon tea offering looks out of this world and I would love a closer look at that spa!
Why we’ll be going back:
The three reasons I would head back to The Rise at The Grand Hotel and Spa, York would be;
1.) Five Star Service (with a relaxed air)
2.) Five Star Food (we cleared all our plates of everything)
3.) Well catered for children (I never dreamed they’d be so happy and chilled in such a setting)
The Grand Hotel and Spa, York kindly invited us to review The Rise with their compliments.