The perfect indulgent escape
shdown Park in East Sussex has seen a number of uses in its time – including a stint as a convalescing home for WWI soldiers and a training ground for nuns.
Nowadays it's dedicated to relaxing weary nine-to-fivers, with a fabulous spa, excellent golf course – and of course the 19th-century house itself.
Step inside the old mansion – which has now been converted into Ashdown Park – and you enter a world of open fires, four-poster beds and gourmet dining.
Surrounding the place there are 186 acres of landscaped Sussex countryside, with immaculate lawns, secret gardens, lakes and woodland trails. And if that’s still not enough nature for you, then how about visiting the nearby grounds of Ashdown Forest Llama Park? You may even see the park’s wooly inhabitants from the grounds of the hotel, pottering around and looking generally adorable.
Before all that, though, comes golf – and there’s enough here to satisfy swingers and putters of all abilities. Treat yourself to a round on the rather splendid par 3, 18-hole course that’s spread across the grounds. Or how about perfecting your skills on the driving range, putting green or indoor nets?
Then, after you’ve had a go at that lot,why not head to the Fairways brasserie for a spot of lunch, overlooking the course? Looks like it’s turned out lovely again.