Tucked away in a corner of London you wouldn't think to explore, the Hilton Syon Park is a true hidden gem. The rooms are so chic, furnished with modern Victorian designs, and their plush chairs just lure you in where you could easily lose an afternoon with the paper.
Our balcony overlooked the grounds so after a quick change of clothes we set off to explore Syon Park itself before the light faded. The grounds here are truly magical. I felt like I had stepped into an Enid Blyton book, expecting to spot the Magic Faraway Tree at any moment.
The park isn't all neat and manicured but its overgrown feel adds to its charm. There were wild flowers, fallen trees, a trickling stream and even some toadstools. I watched squirrels racing across the grass and scurrying up trees with much amusement before scurrying down a tree myself!
At the edge of the gardens by the hotel you'll find the most beautiful observatory. Its hedges simply begged for a game of hide and seek. How could I refuse?
Then it was back to our room to prep for dinner and kick things off with a glass of bubbles. Pop went the bottle and clink went the glasses. I nearly spilled it. Almost.
Jumpsuit - my new favourite!
The hotel is home to a Marco Pierre White restaurant so with grumbling stomachs and steak in mind we set off to the lobby. After a glass of pink Laurent Perrier and a delectable salmon amuse bouche, we were ready and raring to eat.
We chose the baked Camembert and smoked trout tartare for entree. The trout wasn't quite what I expected but all eyes were on the Camembert anyway with its delightful gooeyness.
Then of course we had to have the chateaubriand for main. What else? It was delightfully tender and cooked to perfection.
We were just about stuffed but of course we couldn't say no to dessert - squeezing in the Knickerbocker glory (ask for coconut ice cream instead of vanilla!) and the sticky toffee pudding.
Thoroughly sated we rolled upstairs to bed where I fell into a dreamland of magical pixies who were helping me find the perfect set of fairy wings in the park.
When dawn broke we were up and at em', first stop the hotel's Kallima spa for a swim and a steam.
By then we were famished again (amazingly!) and set off for the well-stocked buffet breakfast.
Rain was threatening later that afternoon so we took our opportunity for another walk in the grounds, this time stopping by the home of the Duke and Duchess of Northumberland.
We'd just arrived at the observatory when the heavens opened and a sun shower broke through. The scent of freshly cut grass being hit with the slosh of rain wafted in on the breeze.
Then before we knew it it was time to head home, our little escape from reality was over but we rejoined the hustle and bustle of London life with renewed vigour. Book your own break at Hilton London Syon Park here and tell them I sent you.
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Photos by the ever-talented snapper @curioussophia