The Best Hotels to Book Near Chester Zoo

You'll have easy access to Chester's city centre and Chester Zoo with a stay at the Chester Grosvenor
You'll have easy access to Chester's city centre and Chester Zoo with a stay at the Chester Grosvenor | Courtesy of The Chester Grosvenor / Booking.com
Photo of Suzy Pope
13 September 2021
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Family days out don’t come much better than a day at Chester Zoo. Set over 128 acres (52ha) of gardens and with more than 20,000 different species to spot, you’ll want to make the most of a trip to the zoo with an overnight stay. Here’s our pick of the best hotels in the area, all bookable on Culture Trip.

The Chester Grosvenor

The Chester Grosvenor
Courtesy of the Chester Grosvenor / Booking.com
There’s been accommodation on the site of the Chester Grosvenor since the late 16th century, but in 1865 it was upgraded from a basic inn to a grand columned hotel. If the impressive exterior sets the tone of luxury, the rooms inside certainly live up to the promise. Even the classic doubles come with gold trim, and the presidential suite has its own study, living room and marble bathroom. Dining is a Michelin-starred affair, with a tasting menu by Simon Radley – or choose the casual option in the brasserie and a nightcap at the champagne bar.

Oddfellows

Oddfellows
Courtesy of Oddfellows / Booking.com
Smack dab in the middle of Chester, Oddfellows is a design-led boutique hotel brimming with class and character. The Georgian building hides a trove of secrets behind its walls – a mish-mash of mezzanine duplexes and loft rooms with roll-top baths make up the accommodation. The restaurant, with its living moss walls, pays homage to locally sourced, seasonal ingredients, and the Secret Garden dotted with wild flora and cheeky garden gnomes is the perfect spot for a cocktail from the Potting Shed Bar.

Chester Townhouse

Hotel

Within the Roman walls that enclose Chester’s centre, this independent hotel is just a short stroll from the boutiques and restaurants at the heart of the city. Doubles, king and family rooms are contemporary in design, and large groups can opt for one of the apartments that can sleep up to 10 people. The afternoon tea here is a lavish affair, and the secret garden provides an ideal spot for an end-of-day cocktail or Aperol spritz.

The Mill Hotel

The Mill Hotel
Courtesy of The Mill Hotel / Booking.com
As the name suggests, the Mill Hotel is housed in the industrial-chic shell of an old textile mill on the canal. Big warehouse-style windows let in natural light to the deluxe rooms, and some have a view of barges puttering by. The Rialto bar and Canaletto restaurant are in keeping with the canal theme, but the real gastro highlight is the barge restaurant, which trundles across the water at dinner time, offering a dinner cruise to guests.

Hotel Indigo

Hotel Indigo
Courtesy of Hotel Indigo / Booking.com
Embracing the city’s past of Roman, Norman and Tudor architecture, Hotel Indigo is in the centre of Chester. Rooms come in three different themes reflecting its history – the racecourse, Eastgate Clock and local architecture. The Forge restaurant is a popular spot for dinner, where wild venison and dry-aged beef are on the menu.

The Queen at Chester

The Queen at Chester
Courtesy of The Queen at Chester / Booking.com
Boasting an impressive list of famous guests, the Queen at Chester has seen the likes of Charles Dickens, Cecil Rhodes and Lillie Langtry through its doors since it opened in 1860. These days, it keeps in touch with its historical roots with floors themed around a different country and rooms named after monarchs of that country. Think gilded mirrors, oil paintings and claw-footed baths. The sweeping four-storey staircase is an attraction in itself, and there are several Victorian lounges to enjoy a tipple of an evening.

Thornton Hall Hotel and Spa

Thornton Hall Hotel and Spa
Courtesy of Thornton Hall Hotel and Spa / Booking.com
A half-hour drive from Chester Zoo, Thornton Hall is a luxurious country escape. Each room has been designed with its own character – moody black and gold, turquoise and white with a sparkling chandelier, and navy silk and copper to name a few. The spa attracts day users with an extensive offering of treatments, outdoor hot tub and Roman bath-style pool. In the evening, you can enjoy live music on the terrace with a cocktail in hand.

The Boathouse and Riverside Rooms

The Boat House and Riverside Rooms
Courtesy of The Boathouse and Riverside Rooms / Booking.com
Perched on the river in the heart of Chester, this family-run pub with rooms is a cosy bolthole. Spend sunny days in the floating beer garden, or snuggle up with a cask ale by the crackling fire when the temperature drops in the evening. The menu is seasonal hearty pub grub, with ingredients sourced locally. Rooms have stylish nautical themes and overlook the River Dee from big windows.

Brook Hall Country Hotel

Brook Hall Country Hotel
Courtesy of Brook Hall Country Hotel / Booking.com
Four-poster beds in the superior rooms and jacuzzi tubs as standard in every ensuite, the Brook Hall Country Hotel offers a little slice of luxury. It’s blissfully secluded in the countryside, yet only a 15-minute drive to Chester Zoo and all the historical sights of Chester town. Sheldrakes Restaurant offers fine dining with a menu that changes seasonally, to make the most of the local produce around.

Looking for somewhere different? Book into one of the best hotels in Chester, or find out where to stay in the city to experience it like a local. Inspire your itinerary with the top National Trust properties nearby, or head out and spend a weekend in Liverpool.

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