We were very excited back in June to receive an invite to Carlton Towers for a weekend retreat. Firstly, let me set the scene. After winding through country roads we turned into a stone gateway and made our way down a vast driveway through open fields. It was only as we turned a corner that we got our first glimpse of the breath-taking Carlton Towers.
The building was designed by two architects, Edward Welby Pugin and Sir John Francis Bentley, who was best known for designing Westminster Cathedral. My initial remark was that the buildings architecture had a gothic feel to it. I later found out that this was thanks to Pugin’s introduction of turrets and gargoyles to the exterior. The interior was a work of art. The attention to detail and craftsmanship shown by Bentley was evident in everything from the carved woodwork to the chandeliers. The whole package is very special and somehow they’ve managed to maintain a cosy and intimate feel in this spectacular building.
We had a jam packed itinerary during the weekend, which began with a tour of the building and vineyard, then onto tapas and wine tasting in cooks (their food school). The next morning after breakfast we went back to cooks to take part in pizza and chocolate making classes, then we tried our hand at clay pigeon shooting and off road 4×4 driving. In the evening we had an amazing 7 course dinner with Lord and Lady Gerald Fitzalan Howard, who own the home, followed by more drinks.
This was just a sample of what Carlton Towers has to offer and they pride themselves on their flexible approach, which doesn’t restrict guests to a one-size-fits-all package.
It’s also worth mentioning how self-sufficient Carlton Towers is. The food they eat is grown in the grounds or sourced locally. There is a brewery onsite, a vineyard and the wool used in the bedrooms is from their own sheep. Not to mention they’re creating opportunities for local businesses by using their space to its full potential.
Having visited several stately homes it was very unique experience to be able to stay in the building with such a small group, instead of the usual hustle and bustle that comes with general admission to the public. The staff at Carlton Towers and All About the Story really pulled out all the stops and provided VIP treatment from the moment we arrived, thanks for having us guys!
If you think Carlton Towers sounds like something your clients or employees would enjoy, we can work with you to design a bespoke experience ideal for teambuilding, incentive trips or employee rewards. Email us on firstname.lastname@example.org for your free consultation.