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The Randolph Hotel, Oxford
The grande dame of Oxford hotels, the Victorian Gothic Randolph provides lashings of old-school grandeur and the nostalgic air of yesteryear. There's an unmistakable scent of affluence the moment you arrive, from the top-hatted doorman to the oak panelling, huge stone fireplaces, gilt-framed art and crystal chandeliers. Along with old-world charm and traditional service, a comprehensive recent refurbishment has replaced the frumpy room décor with something far more elegant. There's a wide choice of rooms, a small spa, easy access to the city sights and a choice of bars on site. Author Colin Dexter was a regular here, as was his fictional detective, Inspector Morse.
The hotel provides easy access to almost everything the city has to offer, but the chance to retreat from it all once inside.
Oxford is a beautiful city to explore by foot. Visit the colleges, shop at the Covered Market, or stroll around the Botanic Garden.
By car: around 1 hour 30 minutes from Bristol, 1 hour 45 minutes from London and 3 hours from Manchester. Parking costs £45 per day.
By train: direct trains from London and Birmingham (over 1 hour), and Manchester Piccadilly (under 3 hours) to Oxford. The hotel is a 10-minute walk away. thetrainline.com
Style & Character
This hotel suits seekers of old-world charm and traditional service, historic surroundings and a location that offers everything on the doorstep. We loved mulling over the menu in the Morse Bar imagining Colin Dexter doing the crossword here and dreaming up scenes for his eponymous hero.
Service & Facilities
We appreciated the care and attention taken by bar staff when preparing cocktails - each one is presented as a mini work of art.
- Wellness suite
- Free Wi-Fi
The Suites have views over the heart of Oxford, with separate lounges and spacious bathrooms. We loved the views of the Ashmolean, the oldest university museum in the world - and if that bores you, there's always the TV in the shower.
Executive Room, Superior Room, Deluxe Room, Oxford Suite, Randolph Suite, Royal Suite
Facilities include: ensuite bathroom with toiletries, tea and coffee facilities, mini fridge, iron and ironing board, work station, TV, free Wi-Fi
Food & Drink
The restaurant has clubby charm with its leather banquettes, gilt-framed portraits and coffered ceiling. The Randolph's Drawing Room is the place in Oxford for afternoon tea; if you're going to indulge, do so here.
The Alice: brasserie restaurant and bar. Modern British cuisine. All-day dining, open daily.
The Drawing Room: cosy lounge, ornate décor. Afternoon tea served daily, from £34.50pp
The Morse Bar: wood panelled bar, cosy ambience. Serving cocktails, wines and specialty beers. Open daily from 11:30am.