AS the clocks change this weekend and winter approaches it seems an appropriate time to return to my keyboard and bring some’ good tidings of joy’ in advance of the festive season. The temperature here on Exmoor is unseasonably warm and the hotel still has a summery feeling with lots of guests enjoying the outdoors and the garden still a popular place to sit and enjoy the late summer sunshine .
The dry weather that we have enjoyed so far this year has been good news for everything that we enjoy as a family and our guests at Dunster and Porlock Weir with the exception of Nigel who has been very worried about the welfare of his trees! Thankfully though they seem to have survived the drought conditions and he is still as enthusiastic as ever as a part time farmer and is very happy to not be responsible for the trials and tribulations of running of the Royal Castle Hotel at Dartmouth – it seems unbelievable that it will soon be 2 years since we handed over our South Devon hotels to a corporate company. We are proud of the fact that we are retaining the independence of the Luttrell Arms and the Porlock Weir hotel in this climate where privately owned hotels are becoming a rare find – in the last couple of years many of our hotelier friends have sold their much loved privately owned properties to large corporate companies whose policies change the atmosphere forever.
The very best news that I have to report is that we are all very excited that we have recently welcomed our new General Manager who is looking forward to his new role at the Luttrell Arms. Daniel Hattingh , who has extensive experience in the hospitality business in his native South Africa and also in highly acclaimed West Country hotels has a passion for traditional hospitality and quality food and drink. Daniel has ‘hit the ground running’ and his energy and charm has already made a huge impression at the hotel on everyone and we are all looking forward to continue working with him on building on our reputation and leading the team into the new season.
We are so pleased that after 2 years of absence the Dunster by Candlelight event is returning this year- this famous weekend starts on Friday 2nd December for 2 evenings and highlights the unique character of our famous Exmoor Medieval village and is a pre Christmas highlight which kick starts the Festive Season for us all. We are already preparing for our Christmas guests and if you haven’t made plans yet for New Year celebrations we have a handful of rooms available but be quick as we expect them to book up quickly!
We all have lots of enthusiastic plans to sustain and enhance the experience that our guests enjoy when visiting Exmoor and staying with us at the Luttrell Arms at this time of year. Alan our Head Chef is busy planning seasonal and festive menus and I am looking forward to planning some refurbishments and the mammoth task of decorating the hotel for Christmas. We are all looking forward to the usual winter pleasures of log fires, cosy candlelit evenings and we hope you will be joining us before long at the hotel where you will be warmly welcomed.
Sending very best wishes to everyone,