The Grosvenor Hotel in Stockbridge is now under new management, heralding an exciting period ahead for this iconic Georgian building with 200 years of sporting heritage.
Taking pride of place at the centre of Stockbridge High Street, with its fabulous mix of independent stores and eateries, famous as the gateway to the River Test and some of the finest chalk stream fly fishing in the world.
The vision of new owners, Simon and Teresa Henderson and General Manager, Lucy Townsend, is to bring the hotel back to being a “high class country hotel” – a “home form home” for those that enjoy the finer things the Test Valley has to offer – be that of a sporting, culinary or medicinal nature!
A major renovation is already underway and will be completed in phases over the next couple of years to create a vibrant, contemporary environment that proudly celebrates the hotel’s sporting past.
Simon and Teresa Henderson
The couple moved to the Test Valley in 2008 and live adjacent to the Wallop Brook in Broughton with their large family and Rafa, their 2 year old Working Cocker Spaniel.
Teresa teaches music at nearby Farleigh School and Simon runs a small Private Equity fund, Provenance Investment Partners, backed by a number of heavyweight chairmen and CEOs, investing in fast growing UK companies. Previously Simon had enjoyed a 20+ year investment career, which culminated as a Partner of Private Equity giant, TPG Capital.
Lucy has enjoyed a highly successful career in hospitality, cutting her teeth at Hotel du Vin and The Millers Collection, before running her own destination venues including the Peat Spade at Longstock and the Greyhound on the Test at Stockbridge.
As Head of Operations at The Millers Collection, she transformed a number of high-end pubs with rooms into go-to destinations which graced the hot lists of the leading travel guides. The Greyhound on the Test, also in Stockbridge, has been her most recent venture. This pub with rooms is an award winning business which offers first class food and accommodation to its loyal fishing and shooting clientele, as well as destination enthusiasts who return year after year.
Located on the most prestigious fishing river in the world, The River Test, The Grosvenor is a mecca for any keen fisherman and a central hub in high season (April – Oct). Once the fishing season is over, The Grosvenor quickly beckons in the shooting and hunting season (September – February) which again it is famed for.
There is a strong desire to nurture The Grosvenor’s country sporting heritage and for this reason, despite major refurbishment works behind the scenes, the hotel will remain open throughout the sporting seasons.
The planned changes for The Grosvenor are ambitious; every part of the hotel over time will change. Divided into key phases, the first wave of restoration will be the hotel’s frontage which is being carefully restored to ensure The Grosvenor once again deserves its most prominent position on Stockbridge High Street.
Concurrently, the Cottage adjoined to the hotel will be entirely revamped to attract and improve the hotel’s wedding business. This separate ‘Cottage’ will take the form of Three bedrooms and a shared living space and kitchen meaning it will be the ideal bridal suite pre wedding and indeed an ideal post wedding retreat for the happy couple! Aside from weddings the Cottage will also be a great space for families and group bookings.
All of the rooms at The Grosvenor will be refurbished to create a modern classic look and feel, with comfort and service being top of the agenda. Outrooms which fringe the back ofthe hotel will also be restored – these will be luxury rooms complete with their own private outdoor space and all mod-cons one would expect from a first class hotel.
The final phase of the project will be the restaurant and bar. Listed wood panelling is a major feature of the downstairs area so this will of course stay, albeit one of the few features to do so. The bar area in particular will be entirely re configured to provide a more fluid space.
Events are central to what The Grosvenor offers. From conferences through to weddings, private parties and shooting and fishing parties, no event is too big or too small. All event spaces will be modernised and refurbished to create chic and acoustic friendly spaces.
A staggered project over twelve months, it will be business as usual at The Grosvenor until each area of work begins. However, with Lucy at the helm her magic touch is immediately obvious. Already, the restaurant is buzzing once again thanks to the arrival of head chef Neil Cooper (previously of The Greyhound) whose modern British menu includes the likes Smoked Chalk Stream Trout with Ryde Bread, Crème Fraiche and Lemon and Roasted Guinea Fowl Breast with Pearl Barley, Wild Garlic Pesto, Cassis, Carrot and Hazelnut.
All the 26 bedrooms have already been given a refresh – with crisp white linen now adorning extremely comfortable beds, Mozzo coffee and Twining Teas stationed in all the rooms and Molton Brown toiletries in abundance. Whilst not yet fully modernised, the immediate improvements mean the retro charm of The Grosvenor can now be enjoyed in all the right ways!
A place to meet, eat, drink or even to get married, The Grosvenor has it all. Whilst for now it remains a work in progress, the hotel is improving on a daily basis; in much loved hands, it is on track to become once again as deserving of the location in which it sits.