On a warm summer’s afternoon or a chilly winter day, a visit to The Great House at Sonning and its Coppa Club restaurant is always going to be a delight.
Situated on the banks of the Thames in the quaint village of Sonning on the outskirts of Reading most recently made famous by its A list resident George Clooney with well manicured gardens directly by the river, this place oozes rustic charm.
I was very fortunate to stay recently and had the pleasure of staying in the luxuriously well appointed Coach House Apartment, an old building but beautifully decorated in teals and burnt orange with a king size bed adorned with crisp white linen and huge cushions. Everything you would hope to find in a hotel room was very much in evidence and enhanced by the addition of a good sized fridge with fresh milk and complimentary water.
My wife, who notices these things more than I do loved the bathroom, a large roll topped bath, a separate large monsoon rain shower, fluffy white robes and slippers, plenty of large towels, fig and vanilla toiletries in abundance and best of all she says, a makeup mirror. Oh how many makeup mirrors have been left in hotel rooms around the world !!!
We went to dinner in the attached Coppa Club, a cosy and warming atmosphere helped along by attentive staff , large luxurious sofas and secluded corners.
A pre dinner drink, a very acceptable pinot grigio a pint form the excellent local Loddon Brewery, I always like a place that supports local cask ales. We ate in the conservatory with its array of heating and despite the cold outside we were as warm as toast looking out onto the gardens. There are several igloo pods for intimate dining outside which were beautifully lit and looked extremely inviting
The menu is based on quality ingredients cooked well. Starters of mixed wild mushrooms in porcini cream on sourdough toast and crispy salt and pepper squid were both superb and decent sized portions. My homemade burger was cooked pink as requested , you know it’s great meat if they are happy to cook it pink,and my wife’s steak was all done to perfection.
A good quality house wine at a reasonable price to wash it down. Sticky toffee pudding and flourless chocolate cake lightened with coconut yoghurt a delicious end to a great evening although sadly no sign of Mr Clooney. I can easily imagine enjoying all this alfresco on a warm summers afternoon or just sitting enjoying a cocktail or two or cosying up on a sofa with a hot chocolate on a cold winter’s afternoon.
After a great night’s sleep, full english breakfast in a skillet and the crushed avocado and eggs with chilli and lime accompanied by truly outstanding coffee it was time to leave sadly without time for a walk along the adjacent Thames path.
Would I go back – in a heartbeat – I can’t recommend this highly enough, celebrating something special or just a relaxing break you will be well looked after and extremely comfortable.
Written by Steve Smith
A Countryside Christmas at The Great House at Sonning
Enjoy a true British Christmas at Coppa Club’s Sonning-On-Thames’ location, The Great House at Sonning – a boutique hotel featuring 49 bedrooms and nestled in the Berkshire countryside. Roughly an hour from London, the property is situated along the River Thames and boasts a large terrace, sweeping lawns and ample riverside space. In the lead up to Christmas, guests can enjoy activities such as wreath making and crisp winter strolls through the nearby village. A bespoke selection of Christmas packages are available for festive stays:
A One-Night Christmas Stay: Spend the night before Christmas cosied up in the countryside before spending Christmas morning indulging in a healthy Coppa Club breakfast and enjoying a bespoke welcome stocking
A Two-Night Christmas Stay: Enjoy the most wonderful time of the year with a 2-night stay at The Great House. Guests can enjoy breakfast in bed as well as a welcome stocking which has been carefully curated with goodies from Coppa’s favourite local brands
Winter Supper & Stay: Start the festive season off right with a winter getaway to the Great House. The package includes a three-course dinner for two at Coppa Club, as well as a full breakfast
Festive Bed & Breakfast: Indulge in a festive getaway with a welcome glass of Piper-Heidsieck Champagne, and a full Coppa Club breakfast which guests can choose to enjoy in bed or in the restaurant
The Great House at Sonning (0118 969 2277) offers a Cosy Double Room from £75 per night. Deluxe Doubles are available from £100 per night. Festive packages are available from £146 per night and Christmas Stay packages are available from £355 per night.
Local Winter Events at Coppa Club
Each Coppa location has been uniquely designed to spread festive cheer and is offering seasonal events programme to not only celebrate the Christmas period, but help guests prepare for it too. Partnering with carefully selected local brands, Coppa’s festive event schedule at the Sonning location includes:
- Festive Wine Tasting with renowned English vineyard and winemakers, Henners taking place on 16th November (tickets here)
- Festive Floral & Wreath Arrangement Class with expert local florist Emma Curtis taking place at Coppa Sonning on 5th December (tickets here)
- Festive Jazz Night featuring local singer, Jenny Fay, on 12th December (tickets here)
Coppa Club is delighted to be launching a brand-new Christmas menu this winter, filled with festive specials and available to book before and on Christmas Day. Throughout the festive season, guests can expect classic Coppa dishes with a festive twist; including pigs in blankets and of course mince pies. For Christmas Day, guests can start with a toast, clinking glasses to Piper-Heidsieck Champagne whilst perusing the starters that include smoked duck breast or roasted celeriac soup. The festive cheer doesn’t stop there as Coppa then provides the traditional Christmas dinner complete with pigs in blankets, brussels sprouts and cranberry sauce as well as vegetarian and pescatarian options. To conclude, Christmas pudding, vanilla pavlova and even a flourless chocolate cake is on offer – complete with orange crème fraiche.
Coppa Club’s festive menu is available from 23rd November and is available at all Coppa Club locations.