We stayed the night at the city’s new The Iliffe Hotel, recently given a Laura Ashley makeover, as it opened its door for the first time.
Formerly known as The Chace Hotel, The Iliffe has undergone an extensive refurbishment to bring it in line with Laura Ashley standards and transform the charming property into a luxury boutique hotel.
The hotel is still owned by Corus Hotels, but a partnership with Laura Ashley has seen all 17 rooms given a makeover, along with the dining room, new bar area, reception hall and more.
Laura Ashley’s iconic floral patterns are featured but have been kept to a minimum, instead opting for more neutral patterns and tones to make the hotel appeal to all, with hints of vibrant colour throughout.
The previously hidden, lacklustre reception area has been transformed into an elegant hallway with Laura Ashley floor tiles and decor. The new reception area in the main entrance hall feels far more relaxed and discrete, with an original wooden table and plush seating for a more personal check-in experience.
We stayed the night in one of their newly refurbished Superior Rooms, styled in neutral grey tones.
Drawing inspiration from the hotel’s Victorian heritage, the room featured elegant Laura Ashley decor with sophisticated furnishings that helped create a relaxing ambience.
The room included a spacious double bed, modern bathroom and enough in-room amenities to keep us entertained all day.
As well as all the basics you’d expect from a premium hotel room, our room included a Nespresso coffee machine, spacious desk area, walk-in closet area and pillow menu.
You heard right – a pillow menu. Just a call to reception and the hotel’s team will bring a pillow of your preference. Choose from firm, soft, feather and more.
These rooms start from as little as £89 per night, including complimentary breakfast.
Elsewhere in the hotel, classic leather Hudson button back sofas add a touch of luxury to the reception hall and are a nod to the gentleman’s library that would have been cherished in a grand house by the Iliffe family.
While a bespoke bookshelf separates the bar from the lounge space, with a secret pocket door which opens to connect both spaces when required.
The land which the property is located on boasts a colourful history dating back to 1257 and was once owned by King Henry VIII. Some original features have been retained, such as the grand wooden staircase and artwork throughout.
The hotel’s Willow restaurant has seen quite the transformation, with a hand-painted mural to reflect the surrounding grounds adorning the walls and plush new furnishings.
Dinner at the hotel was exceptional, fine dining by Coventry’s standards – a five-course tasting menu of Scottish scallops, perfectly cooked rump of lamb and more, all accompanied with carefully selected wines to complement each dish.
Vegan options were also available for each course, including mushroom kiev, aubergine hummus, asparagus and more.
Breakfast the following morning was fair and fresh, with all the basics you’d expect from a continental breakfast and hot food available to order, accompanied by a selection of fruit juices.
By the end of our stay, we felt well-fed, well-rested, and had a strange urge to redecorate once we got home.
To book your stay, visit The Iliffe’s website at lauraashleyhotels.com/theiliffe/.
Newly refurbished rooms are contemporary in style yet elegant
The level of attention to detail is unlike anything else in Coventry
Exterior ambience ruined by eyesore accommodation block (soon to be demolished)