While researching for our 2016 Berkshire Food and Drink Guide, we had the luxury of visiting the Beaumont Estate, a grand hotel in the grander Old Windsor. Not too many residencies can boast as impressive a list of neighbours at any one time as the Beaumont Estate – with Jimmy Page, Elton John, and the Queen all residing within a five-mile radius at one point. Walk down the drive, and this sense of regal company strikes – the English Palladian architecture of the White House building standing tall above the surrounding countryside.
There’s a rich vein of history running through this impressive exterior, one that marks several interesting and important moments in our cultural development. The chapel building onsite is said to have been the inspiration for Evelyn Waugh’s Brideshead Revisited. Coco Chanel’s nephew attended the Catholic boys’ school that was housed in the main buildings of the estate. The first British motorist, the Hon Evelyn Ellis, actually drove to the Beaumont in the country’s first automobile. Travel further to the 18th-century, and England’s first artificially-heated swimming pool was fitted in its grounds. But take it back a full half a millennium again, and Beaumont Estate was near to an event that was critical to the formation of British society as we know it today – the signing of the Magna Carta, which happened just down the road at the Runnymede water-meadow.
Back to the present day, and the Beaumont Estate is fantastic hotel that very much fits this history. An £8.1 million renovation in 2008 saw the imposing White House building updated and repurposed as the hub of this luxury hotel and events/conference centre. With 26 premium guest rooms available, including 10 executive suites and meeting rooms perfect for a more personal coming-together, the venue is available for exclusive hire in a move that will impress even the most iron-fisted of business tycoons. Additionally, the original chapel building was compassionately restored – fitted with seven distinct event spaces capable of accommodating between 30 and 170 delegates. A number of other suites and meeting rooms (the largest among them, the Hanover suite, able to hold up to 550 persons) round of this exceptional space, and together with the 40 acres of landscaped gardens it makes an ideal venue for training, product launches, or even an informal team building weekend.
All this history, combined with the incredible scenery and facilities at the Beaumont Estate, creates an idyllic wedding venue. The Beaumont team know this, and their dedicated team of events specialists are on hand to help with the organisation of any event. A great working relationship with a number of wedding suppliers gives the guarantee of a competitive price, along with the assurance of experienced professionals taking the stress away from the day. Of particular note are the catering options, provided with typical Windsor regality. Depending on the size of your party, choose to dine privately in one of the exquisite and intimate White House rooms, up to a huge gala dinner for 550 in the Hanover Suite. The team’s chefs are always willing to design a specialist menu for diners, catering to any dietary requirements and all event budgets.
The final string to the estate’s bow is a roster of over 400 guest bedrooms. With so much to do and see in and around Windsor (and Heathrow just over ten minutes’ drive away), the Beaumont Estate is the perfect base for anyone wanting to explore the many treasure in Berkshire, or further afield.