When one thinks of Cambridge it inspires images of ancient university spires, delightful culture and resplendent green spaces as the old world interweaves with bold new visions of tomorrow, reflected both in its architecture and those that call it home. The newly refurbished Holiday Inn Cambridge is no exception to this, nestled as it is in a lovingly converted barn behind a stately manor house and situated just off the motorway, making it an ideal place to explore the city or the surrounding locale.
As you traverse down the one way drive the building reveals itself and its welcoming charms which are then further enhanced when you enter the modern and well-appointed lobby comprising its own bar and lounge on one side and the reception on the other. A gleaming smile awaited us from the receptionist who was accommodating, informative and delighted to check us in. Following this pleasant exchange, we headed off to our room, admiring as we did the newly refreshed look and feel of the hotel with its cleanly painted walls and brand-new carpets.
The room comprised all the amenities a traveller could require including coffee, tea, a hairdryer, iron, and a non-slip shower mat with the pleasant surprise of a separate body wash and shampoo. The addition of some hand lotion by the sink was very welcome for those dry hands that soap alone can often leave!
It was then time for us to head to the restaurant and sample some of the delicacies offered by the menu beginning with spicy hummus, creamy mushroom, and delicate calamari as starters before a hearty steak and chicken curry for our mains. The menu is seasonal, and the food was cooked to a very high standard, utilising both fresh ingredients and enticing seasoning. We were very well looked after by the manager who suggested some wines to pair with our meal, all of which proved excellent choices.
After a great night’s sleep, the breakfast proved just what one would need to give you a fully fuelled start to the day comprising a comprehensive selection from a full English breakfast buffet, fresh fruits, and yogurts to lighter options such as pastries all with tea, coffee, and fruit juices. An insider tip is to make sure you pack a bathing suit or shorts for a cheeky post breakfast spell in the sauna and Jacuzzi!
Checkout is a leisurely midday (or 2pm if a late is requested) leaving plenty of time for a relaxing lie in and pack. We had bikes and were kindly allowed to leave them behind reception in the main office for extra security though facilities to lock them outside are provided if this is not possible. Taxi rides to and from the city centre ranged from £10 to £25 depending on destination due to the limitations placed on car use on many of Cambridge’s roads.
Overall, our stay in the Holiday Inn Cambridge was very relaxing, enjoyable, and definitely worth considering if you’d like a base relatively central but away from the youthful hustle and bustle that comes with any thriving university town. It could easily be your ideal jumping off point to explore everything this ancient and world-famous city has to offer!