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Greetings from the New Forest November 2014

Greetings from the New Forest

That was an amazing October, the weather has been so great it is impossible to think how close we are to Christmas, yet the leaves have just started to turn! I like this type of start to Winter, hoping it makes it go faster!!

We have had our busiest October since we started 3 years ago and so are really pleased to be so busy. We have been trying to get the carpets cleaned in the rooms and had to put this off because the rooms have been so full 🙂 a good problem to have!

We have a new head housekeeper Brian who is shaking things up and making everything smell lovely and lots of lists- especially for Gary our maintenance man and so all the niggly bits are now fixed really quickly.

October also saw us host 3 gorgeous weddings and so we pass our congratulations on to all our couples and hope to see you all soon.

Room 8 now totally refurbed is looking lovely- in fact I think it is my favourite room!

Room 16 is now getting a new bathroom and work starts Monday. We are putting in a large double shower instead of the crazy bath- those who have stayed in the room know what I mean!!

Now November has begun we need to start with our Christmas plans, Christmas party bookings and the big day itself. We are full on our party nights, which is amazing but still have space to hold a festive party lunch and also for our Christmas package and NYE gala dinner and so if you are undecided there is still time to visit us at Woodlands Lodge.

We have some unbelievable deals on at the moment too, so if you fancy a winter a break check out our website.

Look forward to seeing you soon

Take care

Imogene Anglaret


Not ready to go…..

Let us know at the time of your booking or during your stay and we will try and arrange a late check out for you til midday for only £20 per room!

*subject to availability.

Greetings from the New Forest September 2014

Greetings from the New Forest!

The last 2 months have gone in a blur and I apologise for not updating sooner.

August saw us busy, busy, busy. We had a great month with lots of lovely guests and 5 gorgeous weddings too. We wish all our couples a wonderful future together. All the staff did amazingly well, as we were under pressure when we said goodbye to Gina and Sammi in the Kitchen, but happily welcomed Charlotte, who has blended superbly into the Woodlands Lodge team and is keen to keep up our values of a friendly and personable hotel. Congratulations also to Chrissie on becoming Duty Manager, you have done an excellent job since you started full time.

We had a slightly tense few weeks (slight underestimation) in the kitchen where we had to rely on the incredibly unreliable Agency chefs- Martin you are not included in that and a big thank you to you!! and so Head Chef John really showed dedication with long, long days making sure all the weddings went well and the kitchen kept running at full steam, it was appreciated.  I am pleased to say that things are now easier and we have the pleasure to now have a breakfast chef James join us and also a new Sous Chef in Sam. Welcome to you both and we are delighted with the quality of the food coming out of the kitchen – James those poached eggs are amazing and Sam the Caramel Fondant to die for… you need to try this!!!

The AA also did their mystery inspection, and I am so pleased that we received a 79% merit score and retained our AA Rosette in the Restaurant. Good work everyone!

We have had a lot of laughs too this Summer, and especially at Robert who still feels that the ponies and now the pigs are toying with him and trying to get into his garden!! In fact we even had pigs come into the reception this week…. Room for 2 little ones!

September, has been gorgeous and hot. A pleasant return as August was a little disappointing weather wise. This has had a positive effect in bringing more guests to the hotel as it is amazing to go walking at the moment- no mud!!! The boat show also took place in September and this also benefited from the great weather. We have also been lucky to host some special birthday and anniversary parties- Congratulations from the Woodlands Lodge team.

We have been forward planning too, and preparing lots of fab offers for Winter and taking bookings for Christmas parties, lunches and our 3 day package. I can’t believe we only have 1 room left for the Christmas package and 4 for NYE- so get on the phone today if you wish to join us for Woodlands Lodge Festive Fun!!!

It seems like it has been all change…. We have a new maintenance man- Gary! And so far he has been nothing short of sensational. Getting all those little jobs in hand- painting door frames, re flooring the garage and sanding down and painting some window frames- I think it is safe to say ‘ Gary we love you’. We are pleased to be getting back on the refurbishment trail now that the high season is finishing. Today we are getting a new carpet for room 1. This has always been a signature room for us, but a stain that has been too stubborn has brought this room down, so I look forward to it being back to its top form again. Also, we discovered there had been no underlay… so that can be rectified too and guests in room 12 should benefit too 🙂

We also are re doing room 16 bathroom in November and scheduling room 5 bathroom for January, another 2 great jobs to complete.

Robert has the week of this week to tidy the over flow car park and has already been busy with a bon fire and filling his skip- a great job. Gutter clearing and other fun jobs await him.

Eloise our daughter, has also started at Infant school this month, feeling like it is a really big mile stone- I can’t believe she celebrated her first birthday with a BBQ in the hotel garden and now is getting all grown up. Time does fly!

I am still loving the reception floor and stair carpets that we had done in July, it really has lifted the whole hotel. Our new restaurant tables have also added a new dimension to the restaurant offering the flexibility to create different sized tables more easily. And also mixes traditional and modern styles really well.

Next… hopefully we can start getting the bar chairs recovered.

Also, we have had a bumper crop of tomatoes, courgettes and the hugest pumpkin come out of our veggie garden so this is a great benefit to the kitchen, as well as being donated Quinces from one of our local neighbours, this is providing the basis for some gorgeous jus and chutney- thank you so much for the donation.

Well, I think that this is all from us at the moment, we hope to welcome you to the New Forest soon.

Take care,

Best wishes

Imogene Anglaret


Greetings from the New Forest August!

Greetings from the New Forest!

what a July we have had…. Amazing weather, every day has been another day perfect for a walk in the New Forest followed by a Pimms in the garden! This is certainly the way life should be!

We have been blessed with lots if lovely guests this month giving us a full hotel most of the time, so a big thank you to all our staff for looking after everyone so well and keeping going through the heat!

Also, the new reception floor is in and it looks lovely, just as it has always been there and so we are delighted to get it finished and appreciate everyone’s patience whilst we had it laid.  Photos on Facebook, or come and see us and see what it looks like 🙂

As a celebration we have purchased a new reception chair- long over due, and lovely to have a new chair.

the beginning of August sees us embark on the first of 5 weddings this month and we wish our bride and groom our very best wishes for their future together and we will miss you as it has been a wedding that was booked almost 2 yrs ago, so please come back and see us soon! Will update on the rest of our weddings next month.

I will keep this months update short and sweet and head back to work, putting the finishing touches to the Christmas Day and NYE menus- seems wrong in this heat 🙂 but I assure you we are planning a feast. We are taking bookings now so we hope to see you soon.

Take care and best wishes

imogene Anglaret


ps we also have some cracking winter offers on the website 🙂


Greetings from the New Forest July 2014

Greetings from the New Forest July 2014

Summer is upon us the Forest is looking glorious and green and finally the winter sludge has properly dried out… so exploring and walking is back on the agenda and it is again truly amazing to be a Forest dweller!! Although with it brings some strange occupational hazards- we have had a lot of cows out and about and one day I was literally chased home by a rather terrifyingly large brown cow!!! It has given much amusement to all I have regaled this tale and In all honesty I was totally fine… albeit a little shaken 😉

Some of our recent guests have also experienced the treat of horses in the back garden whilst they eat breakfast. I can personally vouch for the fact these ponies all have a super digestion and love our grass and shovelling their little presents is an extremely good work out!!!!!!

Now for other news… the new stair carpet is in and looks fantastic, and I have to say I smile every time I go up and down the stairs. Next project of the reception floor starts on 14th July and should be ace when it is done! Also we have had a new carpet in room 11 and that looks splendid and to go with the new curtains and track looks great- finally! We have also new curtains in 12 and been able to redecorate the chimney breast which was damaged in the winter weather. Room 8 is still on our list to re furb but will have to wait until Autumn.

We have been busy with lots of guests visiting us and enjoying the forest as well as 4 weddings in the last month. We have had some brilliant weddings, with gorgeous peach coloured flowers adorning the whole hotel, to a Harry Potter themed wedding and also one wedding where the bride and groom were fortunate enough to be able to have their wedding breakfast outside and it looked fantastic set out in the garden. We are so lucky to have the versatility that all the weddings are so different and it is lovely to see all our couples ideas come into action on the day. We send out heartiest congratulations to all our couples and hope to welcome them back soon.

We have been really lucky to have formed a great front of house team with Gina, Lauren and now Chrissie (who used to be our waitress) have joined our front of house team and each have added a new and positive dimension to our team. Not forgetting Tom who is now in charge of the ladies doing a fab job- think he secretly wants to be like Charlie from Charlie’s Angels!!!!

We have so much going on in the Forest this Summer we hope you can visit us soon and enjoy the Forest and wild life with us. Having said that I must sign off now, and go and chase some ponies out of the car park…. Sigh…. But would not have it any other way.

Take care

Best wishes

Imogene Anglaret


Greetings from the New Forest May 2014

Greetings from the New Forest !!

Yippee another bank holiday us upon us, and hopefully the sun will shine on us!! Well,  we had a good Easter and lots of happy guests coupled with lots of chocolate, so we need a good patch of weather to walk off those extra calories.

We have also had some beautiful weddings in April, and we wish our couples a very happy future together. The weather was amazing for them all- what are the chances!

We were lucky enough to also have a celebrity in our midst this month, with Adam Lallana Southampton Skipper and England Football player promoting the Fifa World cup game in the hotel, and having promotional interviews in the garden. The excitement continued for us into the weekend when we were super excited to see the lounge and Garden on Soccer AM and part of the garden in The Times. We can also say he was a thoroughly lovely chap and we were lucky to have him here.

We have also had some staff changes, where were sad to say goodbye to Liana, and wish her all the best in her travels. We also welcomed Gina who has turned out to be a trooper and picked up the job really quickly and has a great personality too and it turns out after our staff outing this week a kick ass bowler too!

Tom is doing a top job too training up Gina and keeping things going well at the hotel and a great support to myself and Robert.

We are also looking forward to welcoming another new young lady Lauren in 2 weeks, so I will update more next month.

The kitchen are all back from hols and they have come up with a brilliantly delicious Summer menu and this launches tonight- so what are you waiting for book a table or come and eat with us!

We have had fun and games with the New Forest Ponies and I have to say its Woodlands Lodge 1 – New Forest Ponies 1 at the moment, as 2 weeks ago they burst through our fence and so we had about 10 ponies in the garden eating our flowers and trampling bushes- and we were all out in the garden hopelessly trying to get them back into the forest…. Without a good fence impossible task. However thanks to Trefor we have a fixed fence  (strengthened) and now we are pony free. Good timing though because now the cows are out and I am not sure I would be brave enough to get a herd of cattle out.

We also have 3 new beds arrived and so a good nights sleep all round 🙂

And finally the news I am sure that everyone has been waiting for…. The stairs carpet has been ordered. Really excited and will update the fb page once it is in situ. It’s very cool, sounds a bit strange as its blue and orange but will look fantastic and also be a great photo spot for our wedding couples.

We have also had a standardisation in procedure month and we are proud to say that the cancellation policy is now 48 hrs across the board- no matter which site rooms are booked. We have also joined the New Forest book direct campaign, which means guests always get the best rates on our website or calling the hotel and we also include a free breakfast to all guests who book directly.

Lots of great deals to be had and the forest has gone from brown to green in the last week so please come and visit us soon.

Take care

Best wishes

Imogene Anglaret


Greetings from the New Forest April 2014

Greetings from the New Forest!

I am pleased to report that March was a great month for us at Woodlands Lodge.  The sun has started to shine and the gardeners are back tending our garden the ponies have re emerged in the forest and our boots are all a lot less muddy! Happy New Forest Days.

We started the month with a wedding and finished the month with one too, and not forgetting the one in the middle we have had a wedding -tastic month J we wish all our bride and grooms a wonderful happy life together and we hope to welcome you all back soon.

We also hosted our wedding showcase in conjunction with the New Forest Tourism association. The hotel looked absolutely amazing and we welcomed 30 couples through our doors and were lucky to get 4 weddings out of the day too. A huge thank you for everyone who came along and to all the staff who helped make the day such a success.

On the decorating front we were able to succeed in redoing room 14 and it looks great. I can’t  believe how big the bathroom now looks- with a simple layout alteration. Good work Daniel Robinson & Trefor Lunn. It was a close call though with the finishing touches completed 1.5 hours before the guests arrived.  As always everything takes longer than expected and so whereas we achieve a new shower and bathroom in room 8 we still need to decorate- soon very soon!!

We have also got lots of stair carpet samples at the moment and hope to book this in and make a final decision next week- eeek lots of choice what to choose!!

We had a very successful Mothering Sunday too, with 80 guests coming to have lunch with us. Thank you very much for choosing us and we hope that everyone had a delicious lunch.

We are looking forward to Easter and still have some great New Forest deals to be had and so we look forward to seeing you at Woodlands Lodge very soon

Take care

Imogene Anglaret


Greetings from the New Forest March 2014!

Greetings from the New Forest!

Wow, it’s March already and Spring has Sprung! Like a switch 1st March saw the horrible blustery, flood like conditions evaporate and a strange phenomenon took over—sunshine! The whole of the Forest seems lighter, brighter and less boggy already and we are HAPPY!

We have spent the last 2 months in hibernation, but now we are renovating (again/ still – not sure which is most appropriate!) Room 8 and 14 currently both do not have any bathrooms, but I am assured they will be back in soon. This is a real triumph as 2 more ancient spa baths are removed and we have chosen some lovely bright white suites and new tiled floors, giving a clean and modern feel!

We have also started moving our wood stores and hacking the bushes at the back so we can erect a new shed to house some new restaurant tables. I can’t wait to order them and also brings me to our next project the stair carpet… we have been in touch with Crestwood of Lymington to investigate gorgeous yet hard wearing carpets for us J

Our fences and roof tiles are all fixed now – yippee! So I hope we can put this horrible weather behind us. Looking like double figures for this weekend’s Weather and so looking forward to a big New Forest walk this weekend.

Wedding season has also begun . 2 weddings so far and we wish our gorgeous couples are very best wishes. We also had the New Forest Wedding showcase last weekend and had an amazing turn out with over 30 couples coming through the doors. The hotel looked gorgeous and our suppliers did us proud, with Jill the Cake maker creating a cake inspired by our restaurant wall paper and Kay Murrant from Pomp and Petals showing us that twigs and moss can be elegant and absolutely wonderful as wedding flowers. Check out our Facebook page for all the photos.

We are looking forward to Mother’s Day and Easter – we have a Special Mother’s Day lunch only £22.95 and a free bunch of daffodils for every Mum, and Easter is always a great time to visit the forest, whether it is for family walks or a trip to Paultons Park or Peppa Pig world!  We also have a Build a Buddy work shop on the 9th April- 1 – 3.30pm for over 3’s to build their own Easter teddy and decorate a  t shirt and have a drink and biscuit only £15 so great value.

Staff changes are also a foot, as we say goodbye to our General Assistant Carly, but we welcome Melanie and we think she will add a great deal of support to the rest of the team. As always are staff are the hotels biggest asset and I want to thank everyone for continuing to be outstanding and helping our guests enjoy their holidays

Take care for now and look forward to welcoming you all to the Woodlands Lodge Hotel soon

Best wishes

Imogene Anglaret


Greetings from the New Forest December 2013

Christmassy Greetings from the New Forest!

In a blink of an eye the seasons have turned from Autumn to Winter, and I have missed one of my updates for the first time since we started at the Hotel! Apologies and I will try and make this a full update!

The weather in the New Forest has been fantastic, lots of crisp sunny days, so the forest is not all squelchy but perfect for walks, and we have lots of ponies and pigs out at the moment, so that every walk is an experience- especially with 2 little children 🙂

We have had some great functions, a glamorous and glitzy affair with Kay’s Big Birthday bash, lots of amazing decorations, all the tables were named after gorgeous shoes and there were even flowers in the shoes as centre pieces- very different! Check out our face book page to see how great the hotel looked.

Speaking of different we also had a wedding with a red and black goth theme. Complete with scary statues and coffins in the conservatory. I have to say I was a bit sceptical at first but it was all quite tastefully done and again the hotel looked great and hopefully everyone had a fab time – pictures are again on our face book page.

Going back a bit now (the trouble when I don’t keep up to date) half term was great, with lots of Peppa pig visitors! And great occupancy throughout the whole week.

We were also part of the New Forest wedding showcase in November and it was a great day with lots of new couples coming to see the hotel, and it looked really lovely the flowers were perfect and the fire was roaring in the dining room. We also set the conservatory up with a casual table for guests and it was really well received and was great to show another option. We had a special VIP evening as well for all our existing couples and I think it worked well giving everyone a reminder of what the hotel looks like and an ability to finalise those important little details; table decorations, cake positions, top tables. When we hold our showcase again in Mach I think it would be good to do It again!

At the end of October Robert and I went to the Independent Hotel Show. It was a brilliant opportunity to see the latest hotel gadgets and also a chance to participate in some of the seminars with the industry experts. A great inspiration to us and we followed up with a trip to Crestwood in Lymington and we purchased some new wall paper and paints for the restaurant. A week later after Robert and Trefor’s best efforts we had a beautiful new restaurant, which I have to say compliments are new floor fabulously!!!

Speaking of the Restaurant (well loosely) we had a fantastic restaurant review in the Hampshire Society and we were very proud of the kind words and food compliments. You can check the full review out in this month’s magazine or come in to the restaurant and see for yourself how we have improved. We also had our hotel brochures re done and they look good showing off the hotel with the pictures that Alex’s dad took in the summer.

We have quietened down as the end of November approaches and we can start planning 2014 decoration plans- always planning! Our recent purchases, which were fundamental to the business but a tad boring are great and most importantly working well – it’s nice that the computer does not crash every 10 minutes or that the phones keep going out of order!! Small things make such a difference!

As Christmas approaches we are all decorated up! With 3 Christmas trees this year and a great floral display in the fire place. Our piece de la resistance is the big 10 ft tree in the restaurant. I decorated it myself and as I am a bit of a shorty who is afraid of heights I was pleased to get it decorated without incident on the ladder!! We are now preparing for our party nights and the big day! We are full at the moment up until Christmas but we have some availability during twixmas and also 1 room left for New Years’ Eve… come and join us for our night of dinner and dancing to see in 2014.

Our newest member of the team Carly is settling in well and the rest of the team are as excellent as ever. We are so pleased to have such a great team, as it makes all the parties possible and helps all our guests enjoy their stays with us. So a big thank you!

My next blog will be in the New Year- Insane that 2013 is almost over! I would like to wish everyone a very Happy Christmas and a Healthy New Year.

Take care

Best wishes




Greetings from the New Forest September 2013

Greetings from the New Forest

Boo!!!! the weather has turned and i am not sure i can get used to grey skies after all this amazing weather!

August, has been our best month ever! We have never been so busy – just fantastic and we reached an average occupancy of 89% and so a big congratulations to all the staff who have worked so hard this Summer with a big smile on their faces even when it has been tough – thank you very much!!!

As the end of the Summer holidays approaches we have said goodbye to some of our students- which is sad as they have been with us for a good few years, although we are happy to report that they are all off to University and we look forward to catching up on their news during the holidays. We have a lovely bunch of new students and i am sure that they will make you feel very welcome when you visit us too.

We have also had several wonderful weddings and lots of great tips that we can pass on to our future brides. The pom poms created for the conservatory have been so creative that lots of brides have said they will do something similar and i will try and also recreate something similar for Christmas.

It seems so early but already our mind is firmly on Christmas and our new Christmas page is up on the website and looks brilliant. So please check it out out and see what we have on offer 🙂

Looking forward only 10 more days before the restaurant floor is re done- can hardly contain my excitement!!!

Also, the Southampton Boat show starts next week and so we will hopefully be nice and busy!

Look forward to updating more next month!

Take care and look forward to seeing you in the New Forest Soon


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