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Built in 1906 as a “Palace of Business” for the North Eastern Railway, The Grand, York is the first and only five-star hotel in Yorkshire, the U.K.
“The Grand, York offers faultless service along with its grand and spacious rooms,” said Kay Hyde, head of communications of destination management organization Make It York. “The location right in the heart of the city is hard to beat, and we’d recommend it for any travel advisor bringing clients to our beautiful city.”
According to Louise Gee, director of sales for The Grand, York, the building was used as railway offices from 1906 until it was transformed into a hotel in 2010. In fact, the old office numbers are still carved above the doors, and the hotel’s spacious guestrooms subsequently have slightly different sizes and floor plans.
Many of the guestrooms also offer views of York’s famed city walls, which are the longest intact Roman walls in England. Upon arriving at the York train station, guests of The Grand, York will be greeted by charming bellmen who will then escort them on the short walk along the walls to the hotel.
“Combining history and heritage, The Grand, York has everything a modern traveler could wish for and need: an Edwardian-style building, impressive rooms and suites, an exquisite dining experience and state-of-the-art spa facilities,” said Aziza Yessi, sales manager for the hotel.
Once in the reception area, clients will immediately appreciate how much The Grand, York has embraced its building’s luxurious history and original architectural elements, including elegant marble floors and, of course, a grand staircase. An original safe can be spotted in one corridor.
The hotel’s second building, which was completed February 2018, offers more modern accommodations without sacrificing any of the glamour. This addition increased the total number of guestrooms to 207 — including 105 entry-level rooms and 20 suites –— and was part of a multimillion-dollar development program that also included improvements to the hotel’s public areas.
“It was really our vision to be ‘the’ luxury hotel in the north of England,” Gee said. “So, we developed areas such as our new arrivals lounge; The Rise Restaurant, Terrace & Bar; and the White Rose Lounge, our exclusive members lounge. And in March, we opened our cookery school.”
Craig Atchinson, The Grand, York’s executive chef, offers contemporary British cuisine at The Rise Restaurant, Terrace & Bar — a vibrant and relaxed dining room with an open kitchen — as well as Hudson’s by Craig Atchinson, which has earned three AA Rosettes (a U.K.-exclusive restaurant accolade). Open three evenings a week (Thursday through Saturday), Hudson’s serves a nine-course tasting menu and is considered the ultimate dining destination in York.
“The influence is nature and luxury combined,” Gee said. “Everything is locally sourced, so we have a forager who goes out and sources all of our ingredients — even local heather and lavender for the centerpieces.”
The Grand, York’s focus on local and seasonal cooking also extends to its newly opened cookery school that offers more than 50 classes ranging from international cuisines and seafood to how to master bread-making or prepare the perfect dinner party. Plus, three classes are designed especially for parents and children to participate in together.
But cooking classes aren’t the only things designed for younger guests. Gee notes that children receive mini bathrobes and slippers and are greeted with balloons that say, “I may be little, but I’m still grand.”
Another perk for clients who book suites is complimentary access to the White Rose Lounge, which is open daily from 6:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. and offers full breakfast, afternoon tea and evening canapes. Complimentary tea, coffee and soft drinks are also available throughout the day, as well as alcoholic drinks after 5 p.m. For guests staying in Classic or Executive category rooms, lounge access can be purchased for about $66 per person per night.
The Grand, York’s spa is located on the lower level of the original building where the railway once stored its money (the safes and vault doors still remain). Use of the indoor pool, steam room, sauna and jacuzzi is complimentary for clients who book Executive-level rooms and above; spa treatments are available at an additional fee.
“The Grand, York is a wonderful property in a convenient location, just steps from the train station and a short walk to boutique stores, unique shops and fun, boisterous pubs,” said Stacia Murphy of Edwards LaLone Travel in Spokane, Wash. “It offers the pampering of a spa, a gourmet dining room with the most fantastic breakfast and a cozy, romantic bar. I enjoyed every minute of my stay.”
The DetailsThe Grand, Yorkwww.thegrandyork.co.uk