A Pawfect Retreat: Kiki and Lulu’s Luxurious Adventure at Ellenborough Park, Gloucestershire

Kiki and Lulu, the Pet Inspectors, were looking forward to a Spring visit to Ellenborough Park, a super dog-friendly luxury spa hotel in the Cotswolds, one of their absolute favourite places.  After being specially bathed and groomed for the occasion, to ensure they feel their best and ready to revel in lots of attention in this super glamorous dog-friendly hotel. There was plenty of tail wagging as their bags were packed and we set off, just a two-hour trip from London!

A stone’s throw from Cleeve Hill, the Cotswolds’ highest point, and close to the historic spa town of Cheltenham and the famous racecourse, Ellenborough Park is in a picturesque setting that’s as enchanting as its history. As we approached the hotel, along the grand sweeping drive, we were all very impressed by the gorgeous setting of this majestic honey-coloured 15th-century manor house – and that was before we saw the stunning 90 acres of grounds. 

After parking on the gravel drive, the dogs rushed out of the car, eager to get into reception.  Ellenborough Park has a reputation for dog-friendliness and has won the PetsPyjamas Best in Show award, so we were not surprised to find that Kiki and Lulu got a ‘wooftastic’ welcome! They put on a few airs and graces as they were patted and stroked at reception before we were shown around the hotel – the fabulous Great Hall and dining room – to our fabulous garden suite. 

The hotel itself is suitably impressive. Once the country home of the Earl of Ellenborough, the hotel is steeped in history dating back to Tudor times –  a wood-panelled haven with antiques, gables, castellations, huge fireplaces as well as mullioned windows bearing coats of arms.  The Great Hall is simply stunning. The hotel also has many modern additions including an indoor and outdoor spa, swimming pool and even a doggie spa for pampered pets – read reading to find out more!

Our dog-friendly Garden Luxury Room

We were shown into our large dog-friendly Garden room, which was in a quiet corner of Ellenborough Gate, just a short distance from the main hotel. The room was bright and airy decorated in cream colours and with French doors into our private garden. It was the perfect blend of luxury and comfort, tailor-made for humans and furry friends. As well as a huge king-size bed, there was a spacious spa-like bathroom filled with lovely toiletries and a fluffy robe for our spa visits. 


The dogs were thrilled to have been given their equally luxurious Chameau beds, Mr Woofchester’s woof box, toys, treats, a couple of meals, and a welcome menu to make them feel right at home.  After a treat or two the Kiki and Lulu immediately demanded to be let into the enclosed garden for a sniff around and a roll in the grass. 

What Makes the Hotel Dog-Friendly

It is so refreshing to find a luxury hotel where your dog receives the same warm welcome and understands that a family getaway isn’t complete without all members of the family, including those with four legs. The hotel offers a variety of dog-friendly rooms, although we would definitely recommend staying in one of the large garden rooms, with all the comforts a pup could wish for including plush dog beds and doggie menus and gifts. The grounds of the hotel are a paradise for any pooch, with acres of space to roam, sniff, and explore! 

Activities and Relaxation

Our dog-friendly stay was packed with activities that allowed us to enjoy the hotel’s facilities as well as the natural beauty of the Cotswolds. Kiki and Lulu enjoyed running around the grounds, revelling in the new scents and sights. 

A highlight was our visit to a private session at the Spa Garden retreat which has a hot tub, sauna and outdoor lounging area  We also enjoyed a swim in the heated outdoor pool!

After our spa visit and swim we took the dogs for a visit to the Paw Spa, which also features a store room with jackets and wellies to borrow, plus doggie goodies and gourmet meals and treats to buy. Although we only ventured into the grounds, which are so extensive there’s really no need to go anywhere else, the Cotswolds Way is on the doorstep and two recommended walks include one to the racecourse and one up Cleeve Hill.

The Food and Service

Having enjoyed G&Ts in the bar with the doggies in the relaxed setting of the Horse Box bar, we then took them back to the room and headed for supper in the stunning restaurant – glistening with chandeliers, wood panelling and a 15th-century fireplace. The food was exceptional and we enjoyed dishes like heritage beetroot, goat’s cheese and walnut, and line-caught wild seabass. The service was very warm and friendly with expert advice pairing wines.  

The next morning,  Kiki and Lulu joined us for breakfast – honestly, I had the best-boiled eggs and soldiers ever! The egg, sourced from a local farm, was cooked to perfection. Kiki and Lulu were treated to their own gourmet breakfast of specially prepared sausages, and they even made a new friend—a charming dachshund from the next table. 

Kiki and Lulu’s verdict

Kiki and Lulu had been thoroughly spoiled and had revelled in the grandeur of the place, especially when relaxing in their super plush Chameau beds surveying their private garden. From their royal treatment to their adventures across the grounds, they truly felt like ladies of the manor. Their wagging tails and happy, relaxed demeanour were all the verdict we needed—they had loved every moment of their luxury dog-friendly stay at Ellenborough Park.

Ellenborough Park proved to be more than just a super dog-friendly hotel—it was also a lovely friendly country retreat, where dogs really do feel like valued guests. For anyone looking to treat their pets to a slice of the high life in the beautiful settings of the Cotswolds, Ellenborough Park is, without a doubt, a perfect choice. 

So, pack your bags (and doggy treats), and head to Ellenborough for an unforgettable escape with your furry friends!