Restaurant & Hotel Hoog Holten - Holten - Overijssel

cijferThis former hunting lodge deep in the woods is a must for food lovers.

Nestled in the woods above the village of Holten is the wonderful Restaurant & Hotel Hoog Holten, a former hunting lodge that has been converted into an English cottage-style retreat. The surrounding area is a popular natural reserve known as the “Sallandse Heuvelrug”, not far from Deventer in the eastern part of the Netherlands. Although one would expect to find quaint country hotels in this area, what is striking about Hoog Holten is its combination of a traditional country retreat with a restaurant of high culinary standards.

When we arrived at Hoog Holten at the end of a hectic Friday, the first thing we noticed was the tranquility of the surroundings. Nothing but the wind rushing through the trees and the sounds of forest birds. The hotel looks like a large country house, with its thatched roof and rustic details, and blends well into the natural environment. Our room was large, airy and full of light, with a spacious sitting area and modern, well-lit bathroom. The sitting areas are comfortable and cozy, with an old-world English feel. There is also a library filled with old books, a reading table and a comfortable couch where guests can relax before and after dinner. For those who prefer the outdoors, there are chairs and tables on the porches outside the main sitting room.

The highlight of Hoog Holten is its fine restaurant which is affiliated with the “Jeunes Restaurateurs d’Europe”. We expected traditional heavy country meals, but were surprised instead with inventive dishes such as salmon sashimi accompanied by shrimp and a tomato coulis. The seafood was impeccably fresh and all dishes were artfully displayed on simple, elegant plates. The service at Hoog Holten was wonderful. Staff were attentive without being intrusive, and made us feel truly at home.

To work off the gastronomic dinners, we rented bicycles from the hotel and cycled through the woods and the countryside past farms and cottages, and an occasional manor house. We were surprised at how peaceful and undisturbed everything was. Given that there were camping grounds in the area, we expected to come across more cars and people, but this simply was not the case.

Although there there are other hotels and B&Bs in the area, none can match the perfect location of Hoog Holten, its comfort and high level of service and the quality of its restaurant.

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