Music, superbikes, rallying and classic car festivals – there’s always something happening at Donington Park near Derby. Whether you’re in the area as a race spectator, rock fan or to tear up the track yourself, a selection of local B&Bs, boutique hotels and pubs with rooms offer a place to lay your head. We’ve rounded up the best, all bookable on Culture Trip.
On the banks of the River Trent, this boutique hotel is set around a tower with its own water wheels. Standard bedrooms are housed in a 17th-century cottage, and the sumptuous suites in the main house come with four-poster beds and arched Medieval windows overlooking the gardens. The restaurant has river views from the outdoor terrace and serves arbroath smokies and french toast for breakfast, with a seasonal fine-dining menu in the evening.
In the centre of idyllic Breedon village, this Georgian manor house hides behind ancient walls. There are just five bedrooms, each decorated with antique furniture and adorned with hand-picked knick-knacks for a homely feel. The owners have a spaniel and gladly welcome dogs, should you want to bring your loyal companion. A delicious cooked breakfast is served every morning for those staying in the main building.
Set around a friendly bar and restaurant, the culinary experience at Harpur’s of Melbourne is the highlight. The menu may read like a standard pub affair, but pizzas are cooked on sourdough in a wood-fired oven, and the Sunday roast comes rose-pink with a pea purée – even the craft cocktails are made with locally sourced ingredients. Eat beneath flower-festooned timber beams, and stay overnight in a bespoke bedroom – the flashiest suite has a freestanding tub.
As the name suggests, Pentahotel offers New York loft-style living in the heart of Derby’s business district. It’s a 15-minute drive to Donington Park, and five minutes into the city centre. The hotel lounge, with its moody lighting and pool table, is a cool hangout, and they’re so proud of their menu that they’ll give you the recipes for free. Rooms are ultra-modern, but none more so than the Playerpad room, which comes with a PS4 and retro arcade games.
In the picturesque village of Melbourne, this family-run hotel offers a handful of rooms with homely touches. The most striking is the bridal suite, with its beautiful peacock mural and turquoise cushions to match. A smattering of tables, chairs and picnic benches on the terrace offer al fresco dining, and it’s just a five-minute drive to Donington Park.
Park Farm House was once part of the Donington Park estate, and to this day it’s the only hotel on the Donington circuit, so it doesn’t get closer than this. The old farmhouse is filled with comfortable rooms beneath wood-timbered ceilings, perfect after a day at the racetrack. Return to an AGA-cooked supper, featuring venison from the hotel’s own deer park and beef reared on the farm itself.
An architectural masterpiece within University of Nottingham parkland, De Vere Orchard Hotel is all about sustainable living. The glass exterior ensures it is filled with natural light and there are a handful of outdoor terraces for a moment in the sun. There’s no shortage of things to do, with access to the David Ross Sports Village and its swimming pool, squash courts and climbing wall. It’s a 20-minute drive to East Midlands Airport and 25 minutes to Donington Park.
Looking for somewhere different? Book into one of the best hotels near the University of Nottingham, or opt for a top budget-friendly stay. Inspire your itinerary with the top things to see and do in Nottingham; take a trip to the nearby Peak District National Park. Finally, don’t miss the best brunch spots in the city.
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Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
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