Hope House
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Antique-filled Ancestral Seat

Historic Hope House hotel in Oxfordshire has been in the family for over 300 years, and its three refined rooms are now open to the public. Luxury in this classical British home comes with just-ask service, silky linen and a whole lot of heritage.

The house is filled with history: look out for the hand-carved teak panels brought back by the owner’s grandfather on one of his grand voyages as an admiral, and try to guess what the two small doors mounted on the wall in the Churchill Suite’s main bedroom are for (answer: storing hats behind).

Don’t go home without visiting Blenheim Palace (www.blenheimpalace.com), the stateliest Georgian home around and birthplace of Sir Winston Churchill. For his burial place, head to Bladon. Down in Oxford, take a tour of the many grand quads at the country’s oldest university, followed by a gondola out on the Thames. Woodstock is also close to the Cotwolds and their gold-stoned buildings, and Shakespeare’s home town, Stratford-upon-Avon.

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