Jersey is the perfect place for a luxury break, being one of the warmest and sunniest places in the British Isles. Longueville Manor is a five star boutique hotel, and the only Relais & Chateaux member on the island, so it was the natural choice for us to stay there.
It took us less than an hour to get to London City Airport, and with a 20 minute check-in time, we didn’t need to get up at the crack of dawn! There’s a dedicated Blue Islands hosted lounge at the flight gate at Jersey airport, which was a real boon. The plane was comfy and the flight itself was only an hour and 10 minutes. It was extremely quick through customs, and then a 15 minute cab ride along the coast to the hotel.
Check-in was quick and efficient – our room wasn’t yet available as we arrived in the morning, so staff explained the layout of the hotel grounds and surrounding area and we set off to explore. I was impressed with the number of lounges, there’s more than enough room for all the guests to relax in peace.
The grounds were created in the mid 19th century by Reverend W Bateman, and head gardener Pascal Ybert and team have kept them largely as they were then. The lake is surrounded by beautiful specimen trees.
I just had to take a seat in this chair-swing – a great spot if you’re looking for some shade.
Longueville Manor has a “New Leaf” programme, dedicated to protecting the environment and they actually have their own bee-hives hidden safely at the top of a hill which make their delicious honey.
There’s a kitchen garden to explore, and woods either side of this orchard so you won’t run out of walks.
We came across some stunning flowers, from rhododendrons, to camellias and rare wild orange poppies.
It was just the right size for a short break and had all mod-cons: wide-screen TV, Blu-ray DVD player, complimentary wifi, water, fruit and even board games.
The toiletries were by renowned British brand, REN. I liked the little touch of a fresh flower placed in the bathroom each day.
You’re spoilt for choice – jogging trails, swimming, a fitness centre and spa, plus a new 45 foot luxury yacht, Fizz Too, available for charter exclusively for hotel guests. It would be great for dolphin watching, a trip to France or one of the other Channel Islands. The pool is heated from mid Spring to the end of September and whilst we were there, a couple of guests had braved the elements to try it out.
The tennis court is probably the most attractive that I’ve ever seen, surrounded by flowers and trees and with a couple of chairs for those watching the action. Behind the court, you’ll spot the greenhouse where many of the herbs and vegetables are grown. The Cottage Garden spa uses REN products for all skincare treatments, and the gym is well equipped with Life Fitness equipment.
There’s even a croquet lawn by the pool in case you wish to give it a go.
Andrew Baird, head chef, focuses on local and seasonal ingredients to concoct delicious menus. Although it’s a fantastic fine dining experience, you can also opt for a more casual dinner meal by the pool, in one of the lounges or choose 24 hour room service.
Dining is in two adjacent rooms, the 15th century Oak Room, with historic oak panelling and the Garden Room which has a slightly more informal feel. Our starter of Jersey asparagus in a hollandaise sauce was beautifully presented and delightful in its simplicity.
My favourite starter was the fresh crab salad with heritage tomatoes and herbs – the crab is local to Jersey and both this and the tomatoes were bursting with flavour. There’s a wine list with over 400 bins so plenty to choose from – we went for a refreshing Viognier which complement the food well.
My main course of salmon fillet, scallops, tiger prawns and Jersey new potatoes served on a bed of pea puree was equally moreish. As for my partner’s confit of Gressingham duck with heritage carrots and green beans, it was amongst the best that I have tried and the edible floral decoration was lovely. Desserts were thankfully nice and light – sun ripened Peony Farm strawberries with meringue and Jersey ice cream plus an inventive Piña colada with warm pineapple and coconut sorbet.
I chose smoked salmon and scrambled eggs one day and Eggs Benedict the next. I didn’t taste any Hollandaise sauce on the Eggs Benedict, though they were delicious. Mr Luxe went for the full English breakfast both days, he liked it so much.
There’s so much to see in Jersey, and Longueville Manor is a great base from which to explore. One last tip if you’re staying here, do take a good look at the night sky – we saw the Milky Way in all its splendour, shining like a giant strobe light right above the hotel. The constellations are really bright here, we also saw the Great Bear and the Little Bear star formations very clearly.
Longueville Manor Hotel and Restaurant, Longueville Rd, St.Saviour, Jersey JE2 7WF
We stayed as guests of Blue Islands and Longueville Manor, with the kind assistance of London City Airport. Check out our guide to Jersey and review of Ormer restaurant for more ideas of things to do.