The Best Boutique Hotels to Book in Oxford, UK

The four-star Bear was once a coaching inn
The four-star Bear was once a coaching inn | Courtesy of The Bear / Expedia
Sarah Dawson

Oxford is the perfect city for a weekend away. With beautiful architecture, such as the Radcliffe Camera, a fascinating history, culture, great food and independent shops, it has it all. Make your stay extra special by checking into one of these stunning boutique hotels in Oxford – bookable on Culture Trip – and you may be tempted to extend your trip by just one more night.

1. Old Parsonage Hotel, for 17th-century charm

Boutique Hotel, Garden Hotel

A walled-in dining terrace at the Old Parsonage Hotel
Courtesy of Old Parsonage Hotel / Expedia

With its cool country-house charm, the Old Parsonage Hotel is the kind of place you never want to leave. It manages to balance a friendly home-from-home vibe with seriously luxurious surroundings, making the perfect bolthole for a weekend in Oxford. The 35 individually designed bedrooms and suites, with handmade beds and grand marble bathrooms, are a quirky mix of old and new. Drag yourself away (if you can) to enjoy afternoon tea in the tranquil walled garden, or curl up with a book in the cosy library. You can even borrow one of the vintage bicycles to explore Oxford.

2. Vanbrugh House Hotel, for a tranquil stay

Boutique Hotel, Independent Hotel

A calming guest room at the Vanbrugh House Hotel
Courtesy of Vanbrugh House Hotel / Expedia

Welcome to one of the best hotels in Oxford. The Vanbrugh House Hotel is a little haven of peace, perfect after a packed day of sightseeing. This intimate boutique hotel has 22 bedrooms, each unique in style and character. Whether you opt for the traditional Georgian room or the beautiful Art and Crafts room, you won’t be disappointed. If you’re looking to splash out, book into the Vicarage suite, which has a garden and terrace area, creating a quiet place to enjoy a glass of wine and truly relax.

3. Malmaison Oxford, for a stylish getaway in a former prison

Boutique Hotel

A contemporary room at Malmaison Oxford with a black, free-standing bath and grey velvet armchairs
Courtesy of Malmaison Oxford / Expedia

A converted prison might not be the first thing that springs to mind when you imagine a luxury hotel in Oxford, but the Malmaison, in the Oxford Castle Quarter, is one of the coolest places to stay in the city. Each of the 95 rooms and suites is bursting with character, not to mention outfitted with the comfiest beds you could wish for, an indulgent drench shower and a stocked minibar. Grab a spot at the bustling Brasserie and kick back with a cocktail or two in the stylish neon-lit bar for a taste of the city nightlife.

4. The Galaxie, for art lovers

Guesthouse

A lovely guest room with geometric wallpaper and a velvet bed at the Galaxie
Courtesy of The Galaxie / Expedia

Summertown is the suburban setting of this boutique hotel in Oxford. It sits inside a renovated Victorian manor house, and there are plenty of quintessentially British quirks to discover, including interesting locally made sculptures in the bright conservatory (where you’ll enjoy breakfast) and leafy garden, which lights up at night. As you’d expect of a boutique hotel, the decor differs from room to room, but think geometric wallpaper, patterned fabrics and velvet accents.

5. The Porterhouse Grill and Rooms, for an intimate retreat

Boutique Hotel, Pubs with Rooms

The atmospheric Porterhouse Grill with dark walls and banquette seating
Courtesy of The Porterhouse Grill and Rooms / Expedia

Tuck into the steaks at the Porterhouse sourced from Smithfield Market in London, dry aged in-house for up to 42 days and grilled to your liking over local charcoal. Pair with wine and finish with a cocktail such as an espresso martini. Once you’ve let your dinner go down, head up to one of the seven boutique rooms. Hanging exposed bulbs, velvety accessories and chicly ink-coloured walls reflect the trendy eatery downstairs. You’ll love the double shower, Somnus king-size bed and Tassimo coffee machine in your personal sanctuary.

6. The Bear, for historical luxury

Hotel

The ivy-clad exterior of the Bear
Courtesy of The Bear / Booking.com

Pass through the ivy-surrounded stone arch into this former coaching inn near Blenheim Palace. This four-star hotel in Oxford has gaze-worthy period features, and like the palace nearby, some rooms have classical elements, such as beamed ceilings, four-poster beds and original stone walls. The award-winning, atmospheric restaurant serves British classics with a twist; think posh lamb wellington followed by your favourite cheeseboard. Take breakfast in the charming courtyard, afternoon tea in the sash-windowed Churchill Lounge and nightcaps in the fireside bar.

7. The Crown and Thistle, for beautiful design

Inn, Pubs with Rooms

The sleek dining area with a black-and-white feature wall at the Crown and Thistle
Courtesy of The Crown and Thistle / Expedia

Rooms are stuffed with little luxuries at this Abingdon-on-Thames pub; think British designer wallpapers, fancy toiletries, iPod docking stations and trendy vintage-style lamps. Some feature exposed brickwork, original beams and free-standing roll-top tubs. Continue your lavish getaway in the restaurant downstairs that serves mouth-watering bottomless brunches, wood-fired pizzas and Sunday roasts. The breakfast list is long, with creative dishes such as sweet potato and chorizo hash to start your morning well.

8. St Margaret’s Hotel, for pet-friendly perks

Hotel

A comfortable one-bed guest room at St Margaret’s Hotel
Courtesy of St Margaret’s Hotel / Expedia

Friendly staff welcome you to this stay beside the University of Oxford campus. Make yourself at home in a cosy room, and in the morning, enjoy breakfast in the bright conservatory. The garden is yours for relaxing; if you book the pet-friendly room, you’ll have direct garden access. Explore Oxford city centre (just over a mile/1.6km away) the traditional way, as there’s handy bike storage here.

9. Cotswold Lodge Hotel, for foodies

Boutique Hotel, Budget Hotel, Independent Hotel

The lovely Victorian exterior of the Cotswold Lodge Hotel with landscaping and seating
Courtesy of Cotswold Lodge Hotel / Booking.com

Choose a feature room at this four-star, family-run converted Victorian mansion for period-style furnishings, eclectic wallpaper and a marble bathroom. The Merton suite features a four-poster bed. Consider yourself a foodie? You’ll enjoy the posh British offerings at the award-winning restaurant, such as crispy pork belly with rhubarb-champagne sauce (though the menu is seasonal with exciting new dishes added regularly). For afters, sip a glass of wine on the terrace or by the open fire in the bar. And if you still have room left, try a scone-filled afternoon tea in the opulent Drawing Room.

Additional reporting by Kim Gregory.

For more options, discover our guide to the best hotels in Oxford and book now on Culture Trip. For a cosy stay, check into one of the top bed and breakfasts in the city.

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