Audrey and I stayed at The Old Stocks Inn for a 2 night midweek stay in February 2018. I paid £129/night plus £10/night dog charge.
- Dog Friendly: 9.5/10
- Solo Friendly: 9.5/10
- Comfort/Design: 9.5/10
- Breakfast: 8.5/10
- Room: 10/10
- Service: 9.5/10
- Wifi: 10/10
- Value for Money: 7/10 (the nightly dog fee puts me off a longer stay)
The Old Stocks Inn is a recently refurbished boutique hotel in an old 17th century inn situated in the heart of Stow on the Wold, the highest town in The Cotswolds. It is made up of 16 bedrooms, a restaurant, bar, library, conservatory, cafe (I will review this separately)and courtyard garden (including a pizza oven in the summer months). The hotels website promises guests “the warmest welcome in The Cotswolds” and claims that the hotel is luxurious but not stuffy, elegant but not pretentious and quaint but not twee.
The Old Stocks Inn Hotel Grounds
As the hotel is situated in the middle of Stow on the Wold it doesn’t have extensive grounds. However, it does have a very nice courtyard at the back, and a private car park for 6 cars (try to get there early).
Dog Friendly Garden Rooms
The Old Stocks Inn includes 3 dog friendly ‘garden rooms’ which are located in the courtyard and have their own front door. I find this to be one of my most wished for dog friendly requirements: it was so nice for Audrey to be able to walk straight outside from the room. From my point of view it’s also less stressful and negates the need to worry about dragging a potentially wet or muddy dog through a hotel.
Our stay coincided with the “Beast from the East” winter storm which brought snow and freezing temperatures. Even though our room was in an outbuilding it remained warm and toasty at all times.
Our bathroom had a freestanding roll-top bath as well as a fantastic shower that I didn’t want to get out of! Also worth noting was the complimentary mini bar which included a proper gin and tonic, a can of beer and several soft drinks. Additionally there was a plentiful supply of tea, coffee, milk and biscuits.
Lots of information was supplied in the room, including magazines and guides on the local area, as well as a guest book specifically for the room which was a nice touch. This was full of helpful hints from previous guests.
The Old Stocks Inn Dog Friendly Score
As shown above, I have given the hotel a score of 9.5. Audrey was warmly greeted by all of the staff, and was even happily looked after by Amanda when I needed to make a quick trip to the co-op to buy emergency supplies for our car journey due to the storm.
The restaurant was the only off limits room for dogs, however I booked online for our first night as the website clearly states that you can eat in the bar or conservatory with your dog.
At first, I was worried it would feel a little awkward dining in there by myself, but actually I really enjoyed it. The lighting and soft music playing created a lovely ambience and we had lots of space to spread out and relax. Even though we were a little ‘out of the way’ the service we received was excellent. The door you can see to the top of the photo is going into the library, however this is not the main entrance and no one used it whilst we were dining. There was a nice hum of conversation coming from the library which helped the nice ambience in the conservatory.
The only slight negative to the conservatory (we also had breakfast in here both mornings) was that it is a small thoroughfare from the courtyard to the bar and rest of the hotel. There is a clever L shape which means that it really doesn’t feel like people walking through your meal, however there was a cold draught each time the door was opened. That is my only criticism of the dog friendly conservatory.
Like at the Fish Hotel, the breakfast buffet was in the main restaurant, which is a couple of rooms away from the conservatory. However, because we had the room to ourselves I was much less concerned about leaving Audrey by herself while I popped to the buffet. Additionally there is a full menu of hot items to order from.
Clearly positioned in the hotel lobby was a wall full of maps of local walks with clear directions. Additionally the website includes the name and address of the nearest vet here, which is a nice touch.
The website promises a lot, but I feel the hotel absolutely lives up to these promises. In terms of both dog friendly and solo friendly criteria it was nearly impeccable. We already can’t wait to return.
There are numerous dog friendly pubs, cafes and restaurants within a short stroll (look out for reviews). Stow-on-the-Wold is a gorgeous Cotswold town well worth a visit at any time of year.
The Old Stocks Inn Information
The Old Stocks Inn, The Square, Stow-on-the-Wold, Gloucestershire, GL54 1AF
Phone: 01451 830666