Many visitors to Stratford Upon Avon will have stayed at or called in over the years for a meal or a drink at the historic Falcon Hotel. First built as a town house in the 16th century, the beautiful Tudor timber-frame and plaster building was first recorded as an inn in 1655, the Royal Shakespeare Club even held its annual dinner there from 1824!
This iconic Stratford landmark has now been given a new lease of life, reopening its doors as the luxury Hotel Indigo, after a multi-million pound major restoration project, marking the brand’s debut in the heart of this historic market town.
This Grade 2 listed historic building has been painstakingly restored over the last two years and is the biggest refurbishment in the hotel’s long history. It was hoped the hotel could remain open whilst the extensive works were carried out, but due to the sheer scale of the project, the hotel closed its doors in December 2017. Now the decorative black and white half-timbered building with modern, stylish, contemporary bedrooms, lounges, restaurant, bar and gym provides guests with a unique central boutique hotel.
Stepnell, the Warwickshire-based construction contractors, stripped back every part of the building to its barest form and the craftsmanship of the restoration has been outstanding. As a listed building, like had to be replaced with like, and everything that could be kept has been including many of the original oak beams which date back to 1622. Only beams which were beyond repair were replaced with 18 year air dried European Oak. Traditional methods have been used for the repairs which are sympathetic to methods undertaken in the past.
Lath and plaster areas have also undergone extensive works using lime plaster and new riven Oak lathes. A contractor who specialises in repairs and conservation of Historic Timber Frames was used to complete the specialist works. The same firm which responsible for renovating the Stratford Indigo Hotel also carried out major works to the Globe Theatre in London. The restoration was a difficult and lengthy process but one that Stepnell relished, being overseen by a Heritage Manager on site.
The original property was a private dwelling for 150 years after it was built before it became a hostelry. Over the years it took on many forms, including several as private properties. The Hotel shares its neighborhood with William Shakespeare’s School and Birthplace, as well as one of the most famous theatres in the world, The Royal Shakespeare Company, placing Hotel Indigo Stratford upon Avon, firmly on the world’s stage.
For the last two years the hotel has undergone a multi-million-pound major restoration project.
The Grade 2 listed historic building has been painstakingly restored and is the biggest refurbishment in the hotel’s long history.
The decorative black and white half-timbered building is now blended with modern, stylish, contemporary bedrooms, The Woodman’s Restaurant, The Falcon Tearooms and Cocktail bar that provide guests with a unique boutique hotel.
A slice of bygone England, Stratford-upon-Avon is a magnet to visitors from around the world who make the pilgrimage to visit the birthplace of William Shakespeare and marvel at one of the most famous theatres in the world; Royal Shakespeare Theatre.
Hotel Indigo – Stratford upon Avon is home to 93 stylish guest rooms with designs inspired by the history of the local neighbourhood. Each guest room pays homage to the town’s heritage, by using classic English materials such as wool and raw wood. A combination of antique furniture pieces and modern fixtures aim to create a contemporary space that celebrates the past with a modern twist.
“The UK is a popular leisure destination with both domestic and international travellers, and has some of the world’s most popular sites steeped in heritage and quintessential British culture, Stratford upon Avon being one of them. The Hotel Indigo brand fits perfectly with the unique feel of this historic town. This hotel is the perfect example of how the brand helps to tell the local neighbourhood story and serve both locals and hotel guests. The strong growth of openings and pipeline of our Hotel Indigo brand globally reflects the opportunity across the boutique hotel sector, which is among the fastest growing in the industry. We have seen a huge appetite for unique, design-led hotels in key neighbourhoods and we are we are excited to welcome guests from around the world to Hotel Indigo – Stratford upon Avon.”Karan Khanna, Managing Director, UK&I, IHG
There are 93 guest rooms designed on three themes, each inspired by the history and locality of the town. There are 76 standard rooms, 2 are accessible, 12 are superior and 3 are suites. All rooms are equipped with Hypnos beds with luxury Egyptian cotton linen, spa-inspired bathrooms, Nespresso coffee machines, high speed Wi-Fi and a variety of channels on a 40” flat screen TV. The hotel guest rooms boast three strikingly beautiful room designs, which are inspired by the Bard and reflect Stratford’s history, which stretches back to medieval times:
- The Tudor Rooms, display the tradition of the 16th century building and offer a path to the past, with views of Shakespeare’s New Place, his residential home in later life. They help celebrate and embrace the authentic architectural quirks of the original 16th century property. The Georgian Townhouse is inspired by Shakespeare’s Theatre, the rooms combine a touch of luxury with homely charm and present a sophisticated and elegant look and feel.
- The Contemporary Rooms situated in the new wing offer a sophisticated and elegant design drawing from its more recent 20th century past.
Of the 93 rooms, 76 are standard, 2 are accessible, 12 are superior and 3 are suites. All rooms are equipped with comfy Hypnos beds with luxury Egyptian cotton linen, spa-inspired bathrooms, Nespresso coffee machines, high speed Wi-Fi and a multitude of channels on a 40” flat screen TV. plus IHG Connect, IHG’s seamless internet experience for guests – making it the perfect choice for weekend getaways. Guests are promised a luxurious and comfortable night’s sleep. In the warmer months, guests will be able to enjoy a beautiful private walled garden filled with herbs and the undercover outside BBQ area.
Throughout the property, guests will find a carefully curated selection of contemporary artwork, murals and 3D artefacts inspired by Shakespeare.
“We are excited to have officially opened the doors to Hotel Indigo – Stratford Upon Avon. The hotel is a prime example of how Hotel Indigo brings the outside in; drawing on the local neighbourhood to inspire every aspect of each hotel, from intriguing design to locally inspired menus. From the restaurant onsite to the exclusive private garden, the hotel is a great place for locals to gather with friends and family. We look forward to welcoming many guests to enjoy Stratford upon Avon, Shakespeare’s home town.”
Carl Davies-Phillips, General Manager, Hotel Indigo – Stratford upon Avon
Within the hotel there is also a restaurant, The Woodsman a definitively British offering.
Executive Chef Mike Robinson, co-owner of London’s only Michelin starred pub, The Harwood Arms in Fulham, is bringing the best of British seasonal ingredients to Stratford. The Restaurant, with its own entrance off Church Street and will celebrate honest British food. His passion for British produce and sustainable wild food is well known. Bringing his core ‘field to fork’ philosophy to Stratford-upon-Avon, The Woodsman will deliver an exceptional dining experience with the focus on sustainability, seasonality and locally-sourced produce.
A large wood-fired oven and charcoal grill will form the focal point of the restaurant, where guests can watch chefs as they prepare the finest British deer, wild boar, beef and Hebridean lamb; all raised on farms with the highest standards of husbandry. Open fires, real ale and a serious wine list should help place The Woodsman at the top of any foodie’s Stratford hit list.
“It is extremely exciting to be a part of Hotel Indigo Stratford upon Avon and I am really looking forward to introducing such a beautiful and interesting hotel to the industry”.
Kerry-Ann Markham – Director of Sales
The restaurant also has a Feasting Room that serves as a breakfast room by day, and by night transforms into a private dining room. For those who wish to dine in true British tradition, the theatrical and tapestried Feasting Room is available for hire, complete with a long central table for up to 30 guests.
There is also be a delightful tea room, The Falcon Tea Room, within the restored building, the name a deliberate nod to the building’s past, as the renowned Falcon Hotel. Nestled amongst The Falcon’s historic wood panelling and crackling fireplaces, you will find an elegant afternoon tearoom. By night, the space will be transformed into a romantic and luxurious cocktail bar.
The hotel is located just 5 miles from M40 J15, A46/A429 exit and only 28 miles from Birmingham International and 92 miles from London Heathrow. Stratford upon Avon railway station is only 0.6miles from the hotel.
I for one am very much looking forward to visiting Hotel Indigo and experiencing its unique accommodation and special restaurant in the coming months.
For more information please visit https://stratford.hotelindigo.com