The next time youre hopping across the pond, escape the bustle of London
with a day or two in the countryside. Thirty miles west of London, Marlow
in Buckinghamshire has the twee charm of an old English village with
glorious big city shopping.
Built in the 17th century, The
Compleat Angler hotel has played host to such
fashionistas-of-their-day as Noel Coward, Tallulah Bankhead and Nancy
Mitford. Book yourself an Executive Four Posters room with private
balcony overlooking the River Thames (Rooms from 170).
The Compleat Angler, Marlow Bridge, Marlow, +44 870 400 8100, www.macdonaldhotels.co.uk/compleatangler
Ask the hotel to charter you an Edwardian yacht
with its own skipper. Enjoy a picnic lunch with champagne and
strawberries as you quietly cruise along the river (from 85/hr). Follow
it up with a Pimms cocktail in the hotels picturesque garden.
Fall head-over heels in love along Marlows chic
high street. Panache
had us at hello with a sassy selection that included Lulu Guinness silver
lizard print flats, Jaime Mascaro turquoise
suede sling-backs, and white
naughty-nurse heels by Chie Mihara. Further along, we went gaga over
a ruched leather Lupo
Abanico bag at Menzana. Sigh
Panache of Marlow, 21 West St. Marlow, +44 1628 483134, www.panacheshoes.co.uk
18B Spittal St., Marlow, +44 1628 485415.
Enjoy a spot of cream tea at quaint
of Marlow. This old-fashioned tearoom serves up pots of Yorkshire
brew with handmade scones, preserves and clotted cream (3.95). On your
way out, pick up a box of their fine chocolates and some bread for the
ducks at nearby Higginson Park.
Burgers of Marlow, The Causeway, Marlow, +44 1628 483389, www.burgersofmarlow.co.uk
Hourly trains from Londons Paddington Station (11 return), www.nationalrail.co.uk