The Pet Inspectors at Cliveden House, Berkshire

The Pet Inspectors Rufus and Heidi live like royalty during their stay at Cliveden House Hotel, enjoying long walks and their own doggie beds and treats.


We were terribly excited to be going to the world renowned Cliveden House hotel. Famous home of the Astors, where Churchill, Queen Victoria, Charlie Chaplin have all stayed and now we, Rufus and Heidi, were due to stay this Sunday.

Specially groomed at Hurlingham Pets, we were all glossy and shiny and dressed in our Sunday best  – Love My Dog matching Harris tweed collars and leads. Our bags were packed and we were looking forward to our short drive on the M4 to our glamorous destination.

We swept down the fabulously impressive cobbled drive leading to the main house in the Prius although Heidi and I did think that a Bentley or an Aston Martin might have been more appropriate.  The house dates back to 1666 built by the 2nd Duke of Buckingham who originally created it as a hunting lodge where he could entertain his mistress and friends.

heidi and rufus1It has also been the home to three Dukes, an Earl and Frederick Prince of Wales and finally to William Astor who in 1906 gave it to his son and daughter-in-law Nancy Astor who were famous for entertaining royalty as well as the great and the good. We definitely felt rather regal as we settled down in the Great Hall for afternoon tea.

The hall was filled with lovely antiques and paintings and it was full of families with children and dogs all seeming to be having a lovely time.  We hoovered up a few crumbs and our owners did sneak us a bit of smoked salmon when no one was looking. We got masses of attention from the staff who were very unstuffy despite the surroundings and other guests too. This seems to be a hotel that really loves dogs rather than just tolerates them.

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Next we raced up a very grand staircase to sniff out our room which turned out to be the Henry James suite which was really splendid and probably the nicest suite Heidi and I have ever stayed in. There was a doggie welcome letter waiting for us and well as beautiful beds, silver water bowls, feeding mats, towels, poo bags, and the most delicious treats ever! Really Heidi and I thought we were in doggie heaven!   We had a few treats and climbed into our beds for an afternoon snooze…

After our power nap it was time for a long walk and we were in just the right place, Cliveden is set in 376 acres of National Trust Gardens and dogs are allowed to explore 250 acres of them. Our leads were snapped on and we took with us the doggie walking map of Cliveden. We had a lovely time off the lead exploring the woodlands. By this time we had built up an appetite and were ready for dinner which we ate in shiny silver bowls whilst our owners booked a table at the Andre Garrett restaurant at the hotel. We settled down for another snooze whilst they had a delicious supper of scallops, venison, fois gras and Cotswold chicken which was apparently delicious.

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Next morning our owners enjoyed a swim at the Spa before breakfast. Then we had another two hour walk around the grounds before being whisked back to London. This is definitely a hotel we would like to visit again. Although it was very grand it had a lovely relaxed pet-friendly atmosphere, very countrified and only 35 minutes from London. We will be back.

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If you want to know more or go to Cliveden House yourself – pick up your bone and call the Pet Concierge on 0845 154 2104 or email us at –