So you’re heading off for elegant Windsor? Then you’ll need a place to stay. In among the royal coats of arms and creaking suits of armour, the colourful flower gardens and swirling River Thames, even the hardiest of adventurers needs a place to lay their weary head. From maxed-out tradition to boutique-chic, Windsor has some terrific options that combine comfort and style, with tasty morning sustenance included as standard.
Read our guide to the best B&Bs in Her Majesty’s weekend home, Windsor in England.
The Olde Bell
Okay, bear with us. B&B number one technically isn’t even in Windsor, but the picturesque neighbouring town of Maidenhead. Trust us when we say it’s well worth the (hardly intimidating) distance though, and makes a truly chic basecamp for your adventure in Windsor. One of the oldest inns in the whole wide world (or so we’re told!), The Olde Bell is arranged over five buildings and combines elegant interiors with lip-smacking food, meaning it more than deserves its place at the top of our list.
Now, location-wise, Park Farm is a little more on the money. It is a mile and a half from Windsor Castle and Eton College, meaning you’ll be a stone’s throw from the regal charm of the changing of the guard and in easy reach of The Long Walk’s beautiful red deer. Park Farm is a family-run place, and the combination of its old-fashioned farmhouse exterior and the clean, stylish design inside makes for a lovely location to lay down your head after a busy 24 hours in Windsor.
This charming boutique B&B pairs classic English style with a cheeky modern twist. With furnishings and beds that mix super-sleek with swallow-you-up-comfy and an indulgent continental buffet breakfast on top, Alma House is a smashing place to call home while you’re seeing the sights of the Queen’s favoured weekend destination. With friendly staff offering plenty of ideas for where to go and what to eat, this is a smart choice hoping for great value on a (relative) shoestring.
St Mary’s Cottage
A gorgeous 19th-century building with all the mod cons hidden inside that a weary traveller could dream of, St Mary’s Cottage lives up to its saintly name with crisp, classy interiors and a hearty full English breakfast to kick-start your day. With just one main bedroom and the option of a second, smaller room for family or friends, St Mary’s is more or less your own private retreat from the bustle and joy of regal Windsor.
76 Duke Street
Another quaint and cosy spot, 76 Duke Street is run by proud and passionate hostess Julia Cogswell and accommodates just four people – so get your booking in quick! With a spacious bedroom and furnishings that are a lesson in the magic of good taste, you’ll be a leisurely 10-minute stroll from the impressive castle and winding River Thames.
The Old Farmhouse
This award-winning four-star retreat in a timber-framed farmhouse could be straight out of Walt Disney’s sketch book. Nestled snugly on its pretty grounds, you’ll have the choice of just four rooms, making this a truly peaceful place to hang your hat/family tiara after a long day of exploring. On the very outskirts of Windsor, you’ll be within easy reach of the tourist must-sees, but feel pleasantly detached from the town’s chatter come bedtime.
The George Inn
If you’re really hoping for a taste of traditional England, stay a night or two in a good old British pub. The George Inn is Windsor and Eton Brewery’s first pub and shows off Georgian history at its finest – with a frothy pint on the side. There are comfy rooms upstairs, meaning once you’re back from a day at the races (or from daydreaming you’re royalty in some corner of the castle) you’ll be able to enjoy a slap-up meal and a generous helping of port before you slope off to bed. A jolly atmosphere and smiling service makes this an excellent choice for your stay.