Last week we packed our bags and made the drive south to Hampshire for a little festive treat at The Bourne Valley Inn, our favourite place for a dog friendly stay-cation. The Bourne Valley Inn is part of the Epicurean Collection, a luxurious collection of “Quintessentially British” pubs with rooms.
The Bourne Valley Inn is nestled away in the gorgeous Hampshire countryside, just a stones throw from the North Wessex Downs. Those of you who have been with us from the start will recognise the BVI. It was our first ever press trip. Without getting too mushy, it will always be a fond memory for both James and I – We had the most wonderful time [read about our first stay here]. We couldn’t wait to get checked in and enjoy our little christmas party.
A traditional pub with bed and breakfast
There is always something so wonderful about returning somewhere the feels so familiar, This time we got to see the BVI in all its festive glory… Fairly lights were twinkling everywhere you turn, with elegantly decorated christmas tree’s were dotted about, it was magical! The fire was roaring in the bar with the sweetest cockapoo curled up in front of it with his humans – Warming up after a wintery walk over the field.
We headed to reception to check in, Alfie loves this bit… He knows full well he will be the centre of attention! He is starting to love giving everyone lots of fuss and kisses – It’s quite surprising, he used to be such an antisocial bugger!
The lovely Charlotte showed us to our room. We were staying in one of the rooms upstairs this time. Our room was warm and cosy, with gorgeous neutral tones with subtle hints of gold in the wallpaper… Just how we remembered it! The BVI are actually having a huge over haul of the bedrooms in the new year, freshening up the decor and giving some rooms a giant roll top bath – Could things get any more dreamy? I feel another visit coming on!
For the hound
No matter where we are Alfie will always claim the big bed… Thankfully their beds are so large that you don’t even notice the spaniel shaped lump taking up the centre! I swear he thinks he is human. The team at Bourne Valley Inn do provide dog beds for your dog to enjoy and also water bowls – This is so handy as it saves you having to bring yours along!
They also have a little map in your welcome pack of the local walk, this takes you through gorgeous open countryside. It’s a real treat no matter what the season.
Dining at The Bourne Valley Inn
After a couple of hours of exploring we were so ready for dinner! We took a seat by the fire to warm up, enjoy a glass of wine and take a look at the menu. During the Christmas period there is the option for you to choose from the Christmas Party Menu [this must be arranged in advance]. It is the traditional Christmas Dinner, with a little bit of BVI magic – If you haven’t guessed we are a huge fan of the food here.
We decided to stick with their normal everyday menu… The daily special was venison so an instant winner for me!
We headed to the table a little earlier than we have booked – It’s hard work having a relaxing stay-cation haha!
For me deciding on the starter was simple, Cheese is the answer to everything! I went for the baked camembert with fresh bread and cranberry sauce… With a little help from cheese loving Alfie we easily demolished it in no time! James went for the Salt & Pepper Squid with chilli dip, he says it was delicious! I’m not a fish lover so need some persuading!
As I said earlier I had already decided on my main, the delicious Venison…. James was torn between the BVI Burger [I had this on our last visit, was divine] and the Confit pork belly, pancetta & bean stew, salt baked celeriac & parsley puree. Eventually he went for the Pork Belly, which received very high praise indeed!
Now desert was easy, The Bourne Valley Inn makes quite possibly the most delicious Sticky Toffee Pudding in history… I promise you that I am not exaggerating! It’s worth the trip just to enjoy the pud!
We decided to have a nice lie-in the following morning to let the post-work breakfast rush out settle down, so after a quick potter over the fields we were ready for to tuck in!
The Bourne Valley in always put a wonderful display on each morning, with a selection of fresh pastries, cereals and a delicious fruit salad or if you are feeling a little more peckish there is a cooked breakfast menu.
Both James and I were already set to have our BVI English Breakfast, What I like most is that you can pick and choose exactly what you want to have… Perfect for annoying fussy people like myself, I technically have half a breakfast haha!
Breakfast never disappoints, All ingredients are locally sourced and cooked fresh upon order – Super tasty! Little Alfie was also treated to a sausage, which went down a treat.
Another wonderful stay at the Bourne Valley Inn, Thank you so much for inviting us along – Was the just the thing we needed to get us in the festive spirit.
Win a free dog friendly stay at the Bourne Valley Inn
We have teamed up with Billy & Ryan of the BVI to give one lucky winner the chance to enjoy a night away with their hound. You can cosy up in front of the fire, explore the gorgeous countryside then sit down to enjoy a delicious dinner for two which is all included in your prize!
There are three ways to enter!
Instagram – Head over to The Bourne Valley Inn’s Insta [make sure to follow!], Comment and like the post then tag two friends that you think would like to enter!
Facebook – Go Like The Bourne Valley Inn on Facebook, like and share the photo. Then tag two friends who you think would like to enter.
Twitter – Find The BVI on Twitter, Like and Retweet their tweet. Then tag two friends who you think would like to enter.
You can enter on all three platforms!
It’s that simple! Competition closes at 6pm on the 21st December. Winner to be announced on the 22nd. Good Luck everyone.
Emma & Alfie xox