Eastwood Hall

Rachel Bailey gives Eastwood Hall in Nottingham the green light for large groups.

Eastwood Hall is flanked by the hills and dales of the Peak District on one side, and the shopping metropolis of Nottingham city on the other, so it was unlikely I was going to have any qualms about the location of this hotel. Walking and shopping are two of my favourite things, and I managed to squeeze in quite a bit of both during my stay.

The big hotel’s tree-lined driveway was neighboured by a field of fluffy brown cows that looked like they’d just come out of a warm tumble dryer. Despite having been off the motorway for all of five minutes, pulling up to the hotel felt a world away from the busy network of roads that had brought us into Nottinghamshire.

Eastwood Hall is a Georgian country house sprawling across 26 acres of grounds, complete with a swimming pool, sauna, beauty room, gym, bar and restaurant. There are also 36 event/conference rooms, making this is a great accommodation option for large groups looking to organise something like a coffee morning during their stay.

The bar and lounge

Pictured: The bar and lounge in the hotel.

The hotel is what you might expect of large-scale accommodation. It doesn’t have the cosy characteristics of a small bed and breakfast or a privately owned hotel; however, it’s clean, demurely decorated, has all the necessary facilities, and I found little to complain about at all.

Its location is really the main selling point, but the hotel is well looked after and the food was wonderful, too. I recommend the pork loin as a main course, and the Eton mess for dessert if you’re choosing to dine in the on-site restaurant, which has lots of room to accommodate large parties.

Something that really shouted ‘group-friendly’ at me was the murder mystery event taking place at Eastwood as we arrived. There were a lot of people milling around, checking into what was labelled as a ‘police incident room’, and sincerely acting like someone had been killed.

Entering my own room, I found a letter excusing any ‘dead bodies’ lying around the hotel – these were all just part of the event. So if your group doesn’t like surprises, perhaps check when booking your stay at Eastwood Hall that a murder mystery weekend isn’t taking place on your selected dates.

Saying that, I didn’t stumble upon any bodies during my stay.

An eastwood Hall bedroom

Pictured: One of the bedrooms at Eastwood Hall.

If a murder mystery weekend sounds like the sort of thing your group would actually love to get involved in, the Friday to Sunday event is available to book on various dates throughout the year and includes a welcome cocktail reception, and two nights of dinner, bed and breakfast.

Saturday lunch and afternoon tea, full entertainment and a Saturday night party are also included in the price. Groups will have free time on the Saturday morning, and the weekend finishes at 12pm on the Sunday. These weekends are run by Joy Swift, contactable by calling 0151-924 1124 or e-mailing geri@murder.co.uk.

Outside of Eastwood Hall, there’s plenty to do. Nottingham offers a wealth of attractions and activities to enjoy, from the sophisticated canal quarter with its restaurants and cafes to the city’s shopping centres – I must admit, I spent more time perusing the shops than I’d expected.

For something less retail-orientated, Sherwood Forest is close by, as is the DH Lawrence Museum, dedicated to the famous writer. Or groups can opt to explore the myriad of Anglo-Saxon tunnels in the nearby Caves of Nottingham – there are discounted group rates for ten or more people exploring these underground man-made warrens of sandstone tunnels.

For those with a love for the wilderness, Eastwood Hall is ideally located for exploring the Peak District. During my stay, I drove up to Monsal Dale and walked a six mile circular route to Ashford-in-the-Water and back. Those who fancy a smaller stroll can do so around Monsal Head before enjoying panoramic views across the dales and impressive viaduct at the local pub.

Monsal Dale

Pictured: A waterfall at picturesque Monsal Dale.

The rugged peaks region is less than half an hour away from the hotel, and boasts a number of other attractions like Haddon Hall and Chatsworth House as well as quaint villages such as Bakewell and Castleton. I’d definitely recommend popping in to one of the local bakeries for a homemade sausage roll or a pastry if you have a chance.

My advice to those planning a stay at Eastwood Hall is this; if you’re after a quiet getaway, this hotel probably isn’t the one for you. But if you don’t mind people milling around and revel in potentially making some new friends, you’re at the right place. And with all the attractions on its doorstep, Eastwood’s an ideal location for any group looking to explore this historic part of England. 

Groups booking for ten rooms or more will be quoted on an individual basis. GTOs can expect a dedicated service from the events booking team, as well as help when it comes to exploring the area around Eastwood Hall.

0844-854 2910