Lamphey Court Hotel & Spa, Pembrokeshire

logoAs you probably know, I stay away quite a lot for work and being a coeliac this is always quite a nerve-wracking experience, as you never know what you’re going to get!

As a result I tend to stick to Premier Inns as I know which items on their menus I can have and their allergen information is always very useful. However when I was arranging a 2 night stay in Pembrokeshire recently, I discovered that Premier Inns don’t exist that far west in Wales. As a result I had to use our internal booking system and the only hotel available was the Lamphey Court Hotel & Spa.

I did a bit of research on the hotel and as always I emailed ahead to make sure that they could indeed cater for my dietary requirements. I was delighted when they said they could and they said ‘Please just state Coeliac when booking and we can arrange any orders we need to put in place’. Ace!

I went ahead with the booking and a few weeks later made the long drive to Pembrokeshire. Having never been that far west in Wales before I was very excited to be visiting and the drive down the country roads reminded me of being back at home in Cornwall! It was very picturesque and green, not something you tend to get in Bristol!

On my arrival at the hotel I was quite tired having already completed one visit for work, so I checked in to the very impressive looking hotel and made my way to my room. The room was lovely, although a little cold so I mentioned this the next time I went to reception and they advised that they could turn the heating up remotely, so they did this straight away.

Before going for dinner that evening I decided to have a look at the spa facilities. The hotel has a lovely little pool, Jacuzzi, gym and treatment rooms so I enquired as to whether it would be possible to have a facial the following evening as I knew the following day would be a busy one. Unfortunately I was advised that no treatments were available for the following day, but that I could be booked in later that evening. Why not?!

I went and got my gym stuff and had a quick run on the treadmill, but I wasn’t really feeling it so I went for my facial. The 30 minute facial cost £35 which I didn’t think was too bad and it was a very relaxing way to end quite a long day. I was also provided with some samples of the products used which was great, it’s just a shame I left one of them in my hotel room when I left! Oops!

Once I was done in the spa I headed off to the restaurant for some food.

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When I’m eating on my own I tend to get to the restaurant early for a couple of reasons a) it gives me more time to watch TV and b) it makes explaining my gluten free requirements a little easier when there’s fewer people around.

I have to say that the staff were very accommodating and would happily find out my options and if necessary tweak a few things so that I could have the meal I wanted in a gluten free version.

I was also very impressed that they even had gluten free rolls, although the first one that came out was still frozen underneath…. I pointed this out and it was quickly rectified. I’d love to know where they get their gluten free rolls from as they were absolutely gorgeous!

Apologies in advance for some of my photos – the lighting wasn’t great 😦

DSC03053For my starter on my first night I had their absolutely gorgeous soup of the day, in this case onion soup, along with the gluten free bread roll. The soup tasted lovely and I certainly intend to try to create my own version as it was so good!

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For my main course I chose the Chicken Basil & Mozzarella Roulade which was wrapped in Parma ham, on a tomato ragout with pommes dauphinoise! Mmmm I love potato dauphinoise! 🙂

This meal was absolutely divine and very filling, which as a result meant that I didn’t have a dessert, but I knew the following night I’d be having the dessert instead of a starter, so all was ok and I went back to my room to watch some TV.

Unfortunately I didn’t have a good night sleep as I was staying in Pembrokeshire just as the severe storms were hitting the west coast and more specifically hitting my hotel window! At one point I woke up thinking the window was wide open because the wind and rain was so loud! 😦

The following morning I went to breakfast in anticipation of great things. Dinner had been a great success so surely breakfast would be too? Um, well it wasn’t.

The lady waitressing in the breakfast room had no idea about my request for gluten free and as such, they were unable to offer me anything other than my standard egg, bacon and beans. Considering I’d been left waiting for ages whilst everyone else was served before me, I have to admit that I was a little annoyed, but the lady was very apologetic and said that she’d find out who I’d be in contact with and advise that she needed to made aware of such requests. She also told me that she’d go out herself that afternoon and buy me some gluten free bread just to make sure that I had something for the following morning! Bless her!

After my mediocre breakfast I went off to work on my next visit feeling quite hungry. Fortunately I had a rather large lunch to make up for it! 🙂

Once I’d finished for the day I returned to the hotel and discovered that my room was even colder than the previous day. I looked at the window and discovered that it had actually dropped and there didn’t seem to be anyway of lifting it and it staying in place. I mentioned this to the reception staff and they advised that they’d get the maintenance man to have a look at it, as I was very conscious that the storms were only going to get worse over the next 24 hours.

Unfortunately it turned out that the maintenance man couldn’t come to the site that day, so I ended up being moved to a different room. If only I’d mentioned it earlier…. I was moved to a suite!!

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Before dinner I made use of the swimming pool and Jacuzzi. They were lovely and refreshing after a long day and a great way to unwind.

I took the following photo on the way back from the adjoining spa facilities. The sky was certainly looking stormy!

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Dinner on my second evening was just as enjoyable as the first night, and this time I opted for the Rolled Breast of Lamb stuffed with mint served on a vegetable mash with a blackberry jus. Lamb has to be my favourite meat and this meal certainly didn’t disappoint and I’m sure you’ll agree that it certainly looked impressive too!

DSC03067As anticipated from the previous night I decided to have a dessert on my second evening and what a treat I was in for….

DSC03070I’ve found that Eton Mess is a regular dessert for a coeliac (either that or ice cream!) but I have to say that this was the most spectacular Eton Mess ever!

Even from its presentation you could see that it was going to be amazing and it certainly didn’t disappoint. It was full of meringue which is definitely one of my favourite bits of the dessert (I had one last week that had hardly any meringue and as a result was very disappointing!) and it also had a huge quantity of cream. Oh well…! 😉

It was safe to say that was me finished for the evening so I headed off to my room for the night and wondered what I’d be greeted with at breakfast….

The following morning I went down to breakfast a little later and it was a lot quieter.

I decided to try one of the locally produced yoghurts before I had my main breakfast, asDSC03081 the toffee flavour was tempting me! It really was delicious and a lovely start to what would turn out to be a very long and stormy day!

The same lady was working in the breakfast area on my second morning and she asked what sort of meal I fancied. Never one to make a quick decision, she suggested a pepper omelette which sounded very appealing and a little more healthy than a fry up!

It wasn’t long before I received a massive omelette and some gluten free rolls. The omelette was lovely a great change to having a fry up, but unfortunately it was big that I couldn’t eat it all which was a real shame. I really appreciated the effort that was put in to make my breakfast more pleasurable than the previous day and I made sure that I passed this on to the staff. 🙂

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This was now the end of my 2 night stay at the Lamphey Court Hotel & Spa and following my final visit I made the somewhat blustery trip back to Bristol, only to find on my return that Pembrokeshire had effectively been closed due to the severe weather!

Despite a few teething problems at the start of my stay, all of my concerns were rectified in the end and I would certainly stay at this hotel again the future. If you’re planning a stay in Pembrokeshire why don’t you try it out?

For more information about the Lamphey Court Hotel & Spa you can check out their website or find them on Facebook.

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