Following a multi-million pound restoration project taking four years, the 166 room Hotel Indigo Bath finally opened its doors in September 2020. It’s set in a beautiful honey coloured Bath stone Georgian terrace laid out in the 1740’s by renowned local architect John Wood the Elder.
The hotel is perfectly situated on the elegant South Parade, a quiet square just steps away from the city’s main attractions. It’s just a few minutes walk from Bath Spa railway station which has regular services from London Paddington taking around 90 minutes. Bath also has good road links being 10 miles from Junction 18 of the M4 motorway making it easily accessible from most places.
Although the hotel does not have its own car park there is parking across the square (£15 for 24 hours) or for a cheaper alternative guests can use the park and ride service which allows overnight parking.
Arrival and check-in:
The Indigo occupies much of the elegant terrace with outdoor seating to the front on the wide pavement. The lobby is attractively furnished with squashy sofas and prints of animals wearing military costumes. On arrival, we received a warm welcome from the front desk team who were all dressed in smart-casual style jeans paired with tweed waistcoats.
After a quick check-in process we were soon being taken to our room on the first floor where our luggage was already waiting for us as we had dropped it off earlier in the day. Corridors have luxuriously thick carpets patterned with butterflies whilst the walls are lined with photos of Regency Bath and old maps. The use of playing cards denoting room numbers on the bedroom doors was fun to see and something I hadn’t come across previously.
Our elegant room with its high ceiling with original ornate cornices and large windows to the front of the building overlooked the square.
The huge bed had an extremely deep and comfortable mattress with an unusual headboard styled from ceiling roses which worked well. The bed was topped with designer cushions that were cosy to snuggle up against whilst watching TV.
As well as lazing on the bed there was a blue upholstered armchair with matching footstool and a dressing table/ desk with an additional chair.
The chest of drawers had a painted front of historic pictures of Bath and the huge illuminated wardrobe opened out to accommodate a mini fridge, iron, ironing board, and hospitality tray to one side.
The contents of the mini fridge were complimentary and included wine, organic beer, soft drinks, water, fresh milk and popcorn. We were totally spoilt as a selection of hand made chocolates had also been left on the bed for us to enjoy. In addition to the hospitality tray, a Nespresso coffee maker with a selection of pods was positioned on a small table.
As is to be expected with a hotel of this type, the room came equipped with fast Wi-Fi which was simple to connect to, ample sockets, USB points and a helpful master switch by the door for turning off all the lights at once.
Moving into the spacious bathroom, this featured both a roll-top bath and a large walk-in shower. White tiles on the walls blended well with intricately patterned black and white floor tiles.
Thick Egyptian cotton towels, bathrobes and fragrant Bramley toiletries were at our disposal and I liked it that there was a speaker so that I could listen to the radio from the bedroom television whilst bathing.
Part of the hotel, The Elder restaurant and bar are independently run and owned by restaurateur Mike Robinson with Gavin Edney as Executive Chef. This is where breakfast is served, and hotel guests can book a table for lunch or dinner or have a drink and snack at the bar during the day and evening.
Although it’s independently owned The Elder is integrated well and feels to be an actual part of the hotel. The restaurant is much bigger than first appears as there are several small connecting sections designed to create an intimate atmosphere.
Dinner: Servers are dressed in the same jeans and waistcoat casual chic style as the front desk team and are welcoming without being over fussy. We dined on a Sunday evening when the restaurant was busy but waiting staff still took time to explain the menu and to talk through our chosen dishes as they were served.
We sipped glasses of wine whilst perusing the menu and after finally coming to a decision we were brought amuse bouches of shots of venison soup alongside a home baked mini loaf to dip into it. This was delicious and set the tone for what was to come. Readers will already know my love of beetroot and goat cheese so my eyes lit up when I discovered that heritage beetroots with a goat’s cheese mousse was on the menu. Topped with candied cashews and apple this was up with the best whilst across the table the wild fallow deer tartare also received a rave review.
Being a Sunday, roasts were on the menu and as we both adore a roast neither of us could resist this option. We tucked into dishes of dry aged Hereford beef and roast belly of Hampshire White pork, both served with huge Yorkshire puddings and all the trimmings. Portions were of a generous size, the pork crackling cooked to perfection and the beef tender and succulent.
There was no way that we were going to resist a dessert and my Kent mango soufflé topped with chocolate shortbread and served with crème fraiche ice cream was an absolute delight. Our waiter suggested I crack a hole in the shortbread and pour in the mango sauce and ice cream so this is what I did and I savoured every spoonful as it was so light and fluffy. I was reliably informed by my dining guest that the tarte tatin with crème chantilly and toffee sauce went down a treat too.
Breakfast: is also served in the Elder Restaurant with a vast buffet, spread out both on the bar top and on a large table beneath it. We helped ourselves to some of the beautifully displayed fresh fruit, yoghurt, cold meats and cheese whilst our hot dishes were being prepared.
Waiting staff were friendly and efficient offering us second cups of cappuccino and serving my son’s traditional cooked breakfast and my own favourite of smashed avocado with two poached eggs on sourdough. These were both cooked to perfection and so filling that we didn’t need any pastries or muffins to set us up for the day.
In addition to the restaurant, Hotel Indigo Bath boasts an attractive bar with cosy seating both indoors and outside on the terrace for when the weather is nice. There’s also comfy sofas surrounding a large period fireplace in the lobby lounge which is a lovely spot to sit and relax after breakfast whilst reading the morning papers.
A pair of lifts take guests to all floors with ice making machines located near them to fill ice buckets as needed. To work off some excess calories there’s a well equipped gym and although the hotel lacks it’s own car park, valet parking can be arranged. As mentioned earlier strong Wi-Fi can be accessed in all parts of the building and room service is available on request.
Out and About:
The Roman Baths: Located in the centre of Bath and open daily between 09.00-22.00 (standard tickets £27.50 weekend £25.50 weekdays including audio guides).
Take a self guided tour starting on the upper terrace which overlooks the Great Bath. It’s an impressive sight, then continue around the baths, explore the museum and before leaving take a sip of the curative mineral waters. The Roman Baths.
Bath Abbey: There is no charge to visit the abbey but donations towards its upkeep are welcome. Inspect the exquisite stained glass windows and splendid fan vaulted ceiling. Take a Tower Tour (£10 for a one hour tour) to view the parts of the church that are normally hidden from view such as the bell ringing chamber. Climb the 212 steps to the tower top for some stunning city views. Bath Abbey.
The Assembly Rooms: Managed by the National Trust, but free for everyone to visit these elegant public rooms are decorated in 18th century style.
The Assembly Rooms were important to the high society of Georgian Bath as they were designed as a place for entertainment and to be seen. You may actually recognise the ballroom as it was where Daphne and Simon first met in the period drama Bridgerton. Assembly Rooms.
The Fashion Museum: Located in the basement of the Assembly Rooms (Standard admission £10, closed Monday). For anyone with an interest in fashion this museum is a must see. The Fashion Museum.
The Royal Crescent: Of all Bath’s elegant streets, the Royal Crescent is undoubtedly the city’s most impressive.
No.1 The Royal Crescent: is open to the public as a museum and has been furnished as it might have been in the latter part of the 18th century. Standard admission £13 (£11 off peak). This was another filming location for the Netflix smash hit Bridgerton with both the exterior and entrance hall of No.1 used as the Featherington’s London home. An immersive experience has been introduced to bring the house to life taking approximately one hour. This relates the story of an aristocratic family who lived in the house for the season. No.1 Royal Crescent
Jane Austen Centre: (standard admission £12.50). This small museum, located in a beautiful Georgian building chronicles the life and times of the famous writer Jane Austen. The tour commences with a video about the author before moving into an adjacent room to be introduced to a character actor dressed as Mr. Wickham from Pride and Prejudice. The Jane Austen Centre
Riverside Walk: Enjoy a stroll beside the River Avon and view Pulteney bridge. There are lovely views from there and of the sweeping horseshoe shaped weir and bridge which was built by Richard Adam in 1769. It is one of only a handful of shop lined bridges in the world.
The Holburne Museum: Just a ten minute walk from the centre. You may recognise this building as several scenes from Bridgerton were also filmed there as it was portrayed as the exterior of Lady Danbury’s townhouse. The museum was originally built as the Sydney Hotel and has since been a private house. It is now home to an art gallery of fine and decorative arts built around the collection of Sir William Holburne (Standard admission £11). The Holburne Museum.
Positioned in a quiet backwater yet within only a five minute walk of the Roman Baths, Hotel Indigo Bath is a perfect base for exploring the city. All the staff we came across acted in a highly professional manner, seemingly genuinely interested in taking care of each guest’s needs at all times.
Dining at The Elder was a memorable experience too, offering good value for its cuisine and service. On a future visit to Bath I would have no hesitation but to stay at this hotel again.
Details: Hotel Indigo Bath, South Parade, Bath, BA2 4AB
During our stay we were guests of Hotel Indigo Bath and Visit Bath and as always, all views and opinions are entirely my own.
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