The Royal Hotel in Kirkby Lonsdale: Review

lake district accommodation, hotel review

Between the Lake district and the Yorkshire Dales national parks lies the market town of Kirkby Lonsdale. With its 2 500 people, the destination is way bigger than its size. Mentioned in the Doomsday Book in 1086, Kirkby Lonsdale is a town consisting mainly of 17th and 18th-century buildings festooned with ivy, hanging baskets and flower beds.

review, lake district, market town, England
review, lake district, market town, England

The Kirby Londalians do like a celebration. At one time, the town was home to more than 30 pubs and watering holes known as Jerries. Maybe not surprising for a town with "ale" in its name. The winter months diary reflects this engouement for parties.
Diary for winter 2016
5h November, Bonfire night,
5th-6th November Holker Winter Food Market,
2-4th December a Christmas Market rivalling the best in England.

walks, lake District, the north of England, tourism

There is plenty to do and see, the wonderful panorama of the Lune valley, the Bowland Fells and the Lakes. My personal favourite is the Ruskin's view as in John Ruskin, the 19th century, art critic, social theorist and husband to Effie, herself the main protagonist of one of the famous sex scandals of that time, involving Millais, a member of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood.
 review, lake district, market town, England, Ruskin's view

Against this background and with a fair bit of drizzly rain, we arrived at The Royal Hotel, a contemporary Georgian townhouse on market square, facing the Lune valley. Recently remodelled, the restaurant has been made more casual and where one expects a reception desk, right of the entrance, there is instead an inviting "entre-deux" lounge  giving into the restaurant rooms.

hotel, review, lake district, market town, England
hotel, review, lake district, market town, England

Being of fan of tastefully done OTT decor, I fell for this place straight away. Rococo ornaments, walls adorned with clocks, none telling any relevant time, frames every single where, solid wood and wicker chairs, impressive windows letting a maximum of daylight in.

The Royal is a statement hotel and it is perfect in many ways. There are fourteen individually designed and decorated bedrooms over three floors and none are alike.

hotel, review, lake district, market town, England

Ours was simply stunning: large with apparent beams, in a light brown and faded gold hues with glass mirrors and frames, damask wallpaper, window seats and a bath.....perfectly decadent. Needless to say that there is also a large walk-in separate shower room, of a high standard too.

hotel, review, lake district, market town, England
hotel, review, lake district, market town, England

All rooms are inclusive of breakfast but if you choose to eat in the restaurant, I would advise you to go for the simplest dishes which let the local products sing. I was told by a passer-by not to miss their Sunday roast. I can well believe that like the rest, it is magnificent and lovingly prepared.

hotel, review, lake district, market town, England
hotel, review, lake district, market town, England

The Royal Hotel is part of the James' places groupDISCLOSURE:  I enjoyed my stay as a guest of Royal Hotel but received no further remuneration to write this post.  I was not expected to write a positive review – all views are my own and I retain full editorial control. 

I would like to extend my special thanks to Damian Atkins, General Manager who welcomed us warmly.

The Royal Hotel
Main Street
Kirkby Lonsdale,
01524 271966

For current information about Kirkby Lonsdale head for the Tourism Office website at

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