No.15 Great Pulteney
40-bedroom boutique hotel spells out 'luxury for the curious'
With No.15 Great Pulteney's early August re-opening, this truly splendid 40-bedroom boutique hotel is delighted to be welcoming back loyal fans and is also set to win over first-time guests seeking out Britain’s finest offerings.
When better than summer 2020 to explore Bath and discover how No.15 Great Pulteney taps into the city’s balancing buzz and sense of calm? Here are 15 sound reasons why No.15 should be your choice:
1). Location, location, location: On the other side of the River Avon from the city centre but an easy walk to it across Pulteney Bridge, No.15 is ideally-located to take in Bath’s layering of Georgian architecture, Regency influences, wide vistas and gardens that are all surrounded by a picturesque landscape of hills.
Plum in the middle of Bath’s widest (30 metres) and grandest boulevard - Great Pulteney Street - No.15 embraces three Grade I Georgian townhouses that were transformed for the launch of the hotel in December 2016. The elegant Bathwick neighbourhood also offers two Victorian gardens (the seven-acre Henrietta Park and 10-acre Sydney Gardens) within 10 minutes’ walk of No.15’s doorstep.
At the far end of the street, The Holburne Museum – where the ‘Grayson Perry: the Pre-therapy Years’ exhibition has been extended until 3rd January 2021 – is in sight from No.15’s front door.
2). Bringing colour back into life: No.15’s elegant frontage may suggest a sedate air but prepare for surprises within. Here ‘luxury for the curious’ is fast-paced thanks to bold design statements, quirky decorative pieces and exuberant colours. The Lost Earring Chandelier made up of 500 donated single, spare earrings complements the vibrant ‘Lobby Boy’ oil painting in Reception’s sitting room; Bar 15’s plexiglass table tops each contain a treasure trove of bric-a-brac jewellery and the loft rooms on the Artists’ Floor feature specially-commissioned murals by local and up-and-coming artists, for instance. Hallways and staircases are galleries for collections such as antique tennis racquets, free-blown glass art and framed evening bags. All such curios play to the city’s natural colours, heritage, Georgian and contemporary energy as translated by London’s Martin Hulbert Design with local names, Rossiters of Bath and Woodhouse & Law also having created particular bedroom suites.
3). Rooms with a view: drawing on its prime location, all bedrooms and suites either look out towards the expansive vistas of Great Pulteney Street or over the green space of Henrietta Park on the opposite side of the property. The loft rooms of the Artists’ Floor do so airily from on high while lower down the three Pulteney Junior Suites – the grandest in the house and also with a view of Bath Rugby ground – draw on the townhouse’s proportions with large sash windows and high ceilings.
4). The Hideout Suite: for those seeking optimum social distancing then the hotel’s top, one-bedroom Hideout Suite is the answer. It comes with its own dedicated entrance for access at the rear of the hotel (by-passing the main reception area) as well as a separate sitting room where room service can be cosily enjoyed and a fireplace lit as autumn heads into winter. There’s a dedicated dressing room also and a vast bathroom featuring its own hot-tub (a section of which enjoys being open-air) and steam room/shower to replicate a private spa-style experience. If a beauty or body treatment is sought, Hideout guests can simply nip next door to Spa 15.
5). The Dispensary for restorative eating out: despite the new-found irony of the restaurant’s name, rest assured that its display of antique chemist’s cabinets with their vintage jewel coloured-glass apothecary bottles are purely decorative and what is dispensed here is seasonal, locally-sourced, sustainable food. A sense of theatre begins with breakfast’s deli-counter where fresh oranges are squeezed, barista coffee brews, Bertinet Bakery treats are warmed and full English staples are prepared and then served to the table.
The hotel’s sense of colour and boldness undoubtedly calls out for dishes of the same temperament, with characterful twists on lunch and dinner menus. Salt baked Wiltshire beetroot with black quinoa, pickled summer vegetables, spiced puffed spelt & local chervil; Bath chaps with shallot, lemon, parsley, garlic & crispy crackling; Crispy Bath white hens’ egg braised lettuce, pea & mint; Wiltshire spring lamb with aubergine purée, potato terrine, poached heritage tomatoes & mint relish and Strawberry & frangipane tart with compressed strawberries, strawberry ice cream & hazelnut brittle hint at the many menu highlights to come - and which will appear on No.15’s brand new guest app for advance ordering.
6). Whatever takes your fancy: Afternoon Tea, Cocktails & Sunday Roasts: In keeping with its defining flourishes and colourful dash, No.15 translates the typically English and indulgent traditions so closely linked with a top-notch hotel in a style all of its own.
English Afternoon Tea’s three-tier stand, for example, hangs from a branch of a bronze, tree-like carrier that’s first planted on the floor beside the table. Matching the menu, there are 11 selections of tea – including No.15’s own blends of English Breakfast and Earl Grey – and each guest will have their choice served in an individual style of retro silver teapot. Simply add a glass of AR Lenoble champagne to heighten the sense of occasion. (£30 per person; £38 with a glass of champagne added.)
While the area around Bar 15 is open all day for coffee, lunching and afternoon tea, come the cocktail hour and through to night-capping, this hub within the hotel raises the stakes as it serves up slinky cocktails, craft ales, artisan G&Ts and whatever your tipple may be.
It may have been too much of a hassle for carrot purée, Yorkshire pudding, seasonal greens, roast potatoes and cauliflower cheese to accompany home Sunday Roasts over the past several months. As families head out once more let No.15 be the one to serve up all these delicious trimmings instead – and allow each luncher their own roast preference too. No.15’s Sunday lunch menu also comes with starters such as Wyfe of Bath cheese soufflé or Salt and pepper squid, sriracha mayonnaise while Wild mushroom risotto or Cod, lemon, chive crushed new potatoes, white wine cream sauce allow for alternative main courses. Puds such as Cherry cheesecake with cherry sorbet or Chocolate mousse, toasted coconut will mango sorbet will round off lunch quite splendidly. (Two courses for £23.50 per person with three courses at £28.50. Children, up to age 12: two courses at £11.50 & three courses at £14).
7). Stay as a family: the six Large Deluxe Doubles feature added seating areas and three of them also have sofa beds making them all ideal for family stays with two young children. Brand new for summer 2020 are cotton canvas and pine wood tippees for children to ‘camp out’ while comfortably indoors.
8). Tuck in at the Larder: Any hotel guests feeling peckish can head to the kitchenette-style Larder to seek out tempting and hygienically-packaged complimentary snacks and soft drinks. Help yourself to whatever appeals - pop-corn, sweets, jammy dodgers, marshmallows and West Country farm-produced Chew Moo’s ice-creams in a variety of flavours – and then head back to your room and watch a later night movie perhaps?
9). Pamper your pooch – to the rear of the hotel, the separate 10-bedroom Coach House (with its mock Gothic façade, crenelated parapet and quatrefoil windows) is particularly suited for guests with dogs. From here you can nip out to Henrietta Park without having to go through the main part of the hotel. Yet well-behaved dogs are also welcome in Bar 15, the hotel’s sitting rooms and the main house’s bedrooms (excluding the Artists’ Floor). The £20 supplement includes a ‘Woof’ welcome box packed up with Lily’s Kitchen food, biscuits and a ball for time out in the park. Dog bowls are provided and blankets can be purchased while dog-sitting and dog-walking services can also be requested.
10). Pick up a Picnic: There are any number of captivating spots in and around Bath or heading into the Somerset, Wiltshire or Gloucestershire countryside for a day out when staying at No.15 or heading onwards. Keep yourself well-fuelled with an afternoon tea picnic hamper prepared for you by No.15. (Priced at £30 per person, make sure to order 24 hours ahead of check-in.)
11). In-room technology for home-hotel online entertainment: No.15 has recently installed Google Chrome Cast so that guests can apply their own preferred subscription on to it and continue to enjoy their favoured TV series and film choices while staying at the hotel.
Additionally, all in-room magazines, books and games have been replaced with a far-wider collection of choices made available through No.15’s brand new app. Guests will receive an access code to select and download their personal reading and screen play preferences while at No.15. The added bonus for both hotel and guest is that the downloaded selection can travel back home with them!
12). Spa 15 for a wellbeing escape: This No.15 gem, housed in the building’s exposed vaults, draws on Bath’s heritage as a spa city and the building’s Georgian townhouse architecture.
The four treatment rooms are individually-named to hint at their particular decorative style and how they add to the sense of fun throughout No.15: the Sock Room, the Tapestry Room, the Coral Room and the Pottery Room. Natura Bissé and ila Holistic treatments, body massages, facials and other beauty treatments are hugely restorative while this private, cosy and discreet spa induces relaxation by its very nature.
13). Bath-time Bliss: bath-time in this city is something to celebrate …even more after a long day of sight-seeing. Plush pairs of towelling robes and slippers come in every bathroom while bathtub sizes and skincare products vary according to room type.
By its very name and fragrances, the English ‘100 Acres Apothecary’ range of bath and body care products evoke the British countryside’s rolling hills for the top floor’s ‘Cosy’ loft rooms while the also enticing, sensory Aromatherapy Associates range is featured in the Deluxe Doubles and Large Deluxe Doubles. The artisanal Bamford body and skincare range then appears in all suites.
14). Let’s get married….simply and stylishly: the size and scale of No.15 lends the hotel particularly well to the more low-key and intimate wedding celebration: the Pulteney Room and the Dispensary can welcome up to 35 and 70 for a drinks reception, respectively or up to 22 or 38 for a sit-down lunch or dinner.
A civil ceremony at Bath’s Guildhall is a seven-minute walk away and a church wedding at St Mary the Virgin in Bathwick is a mere five minutes from No.15. With wedding parties limited to 30 currently, No.15 has the know-how and the wherewithal for adding its magic to 2020’s scaled-down occasions. Indeed the whole wedding party could stay on overnight spaced out across the hotel…. as long as the newlyweds have first-dibs on the Hideout Suite!
15). A Team Approach to Service: Led by general manager Guillaume Lesage, No.15’s 40-strong team of staff is re-energised by welcoming back hotel guests who are bound to appreciate their can-do energy. Every detail to ensure safe conditions for one-and-all has been addressed while still ensuring that the No.15 experience remains true to its very spirit.
‘I had only been in my new role for a matter of weeks when lockdown came,’ says Guillaume who arrived at No.15 from The Bannatyne Group’s Charlton House Hotel & Spa near Glastonbury where he had previously been the GM. ‘The past four months have undeniably presented the rare chance to draw the whole team together as we’ve prepared to re-open No.15 around a very unusual common cause that is testing the whole hospitality industry. We have created an easy-to-use, brand new No.15 app which has all the information that a guest will need. There has been training in new practices, re-training in established ones and the hotel has received VisitEngland’s ‘We’re Good to Go’ accreditation.
‘We will learn so much from these challenging times and seize upon the positives that arise,’ adds Guillaume.
Indeed, contemplation of the various highs and lows witnessed by the beau monde within and around Great Pulteney Street down the centuries should serve to reassure that challenges find their resolution. William Wilberforce lived at No. 36 and Jane Austen was around the corner at 4 Sydney Place. In 1921, No.15 first became a hotel and was known then as the Carfax Hotel; it survived not just the Blitz but also a van crashing through the window…and being run as a temperance hotel by the Salvation Army from 1948-2013! The centrepiece fountain at Laura Place – near to where Great Pulteney Street meets the bridge – is a modern redesign of the original one that was damaged beyond repair during Freshers’ Week of 1969. Next year will see the property mark its centenary as a hotel …albeit in varying guises.
Bedroom rates at No.15 Great Pulteney start at £149 (breakfast included) per night, subject to availability.
For more details, contact the hotel on Tel: 01225 807015; e-mail: or click the logo to visit the website.
No.15 Great Pulteney, 15 Great Pulteney Street, Bath BA2 4BR