My husband had always been interested in visiting the Source of the Thames river near Kemble in the Cotswolds. When I noticed a great Amazon local offer to stay at The Wild Duck Inn in the village of Ewen, Cirencester which was close to the Thames Path, I immediately made a booking for 2 midweek days in October. The offer was for 2 nights B&B in a 4 poster room for £89.00 which I thought was fantastic value! (Think it was reduced by 60%).
The Wild Duck Inn dates from 1563 and was originally a coaching inn.It has a few rooms in the old part of the building and the others are in a more modern annexe.
A few months after making our booking we had to ask to change the dates due to one of our cats having to stay at the vets for a few days. Dino could not have been more helpful or understanding giving us a few options to choose from. We decided to opt for the same week but with a change of day but this would mean we would stay in a superior room in the old part of the building the first night and would move to a standard room in the newer area for the second. Due to the circumstances Dino decided not to charge the extra cost of the superior room which we thought was a lovely gesture. We looked forward to thanking him in person.
There is no reception area – you check in at the bar.We received a warm friendly welcome and were shown to our room.
The room was quite spacious and overlooked the lovely garden patio area .It was decorated in a traditional style with a 4 poster bed which was so comfortable (see photos). The ensuite bathroom was windowless but with a fan.We thought it odd that there was no shower screen or curtain around the bath but realised that the hand held shower attachment could not be attached to the wall. This wasn’t a major problem but a minor inconvenience which could have been easily rectified. However this was mentioned in the description which I hadn’t taken notice of as we hadn’t originally booked a superior room. This room would be unsuitable for anyone with mobility issues as was accessed by narrow spiral steps (see photo). Our second room was in the annexe – more updated but smaller (see photos). The main difference was that there was a proper “over the bath” shower with a screen (see pics). This room would be better suited to the less mobile as was on the ground floor.
The bar area was really cosy with wonderful quirky décor (see photos) and benefited from a real log fire. My husband was very impressed with the range of real ales and enjoyed a few pints of Doombar…one of his favourites. There was a great range of wines and sprits to choose from. There was also a cosy lounge area for residents (see pic) which sadly we never got round to using.
We chose to eat in the restaurant on both nights of our stay(there was also the option to eat in the bar area). The first evening it was a steak night which we really enjoyed. The food was brilliant, nicely presented and good quality. Service was very good too. On the second evening we selected chicken wrapped in Parma ham and the traditional “fish & chips” both of which were excellent. Superb choice of desserts although sadly I could only manage one on the second evening and even then I had to ask my husband to help me out! Dinner price per head was approx £25 excluding wine which was around a very reasonable £18 a bottle. All the staff we encountered were really friendly and helpful particularly Dino who was on duty on the 2nd evening and served us at breakfast the following morning. When not busy they were happy to chat and also gave advice about the local area.
The Continental breakfast was quite simple but good quality. There was a choice of cereals, bread rolls with cheese and “proper” fresh ham, toast and preserves, all self service apart from tea & coffee which were served in pots/cafetieres. A cooked breakfast was also on offer but this was extra to the “ 2 night “package we had booked.
The only downside was that there was nothing much else in the vicinity within walking distance.
The atmosphere was great as was the standard of food and the service. We would not hesitate to return.