We’ve never found a hotel in York that we liked enough to recommend but at last this could be it. Its strength is its young and enthusiastic staff, its hands-on owner Helen, and a wonderful old building, steeped in history, which she converted with her late husband John.
   You enter by a long, comfortable sitting room, with original 11thC walls forming one side. Above is a long, imposing gallery with wonderful oak panelling. There’s a small pleasant bar at one end, and a peaceful sitting-room/library on the same floor stuffed with classic and modern literature, and comfy sofas. Furnishings are in places an eclectic mixture of antiques and modern pieces. And though the seven rooms are not filled with characterful details they're nevertheless light, comfortable and spacious, all with mod-cons.
   Our dinner was fairly priced but breakfast, held in the handsome parlour or (weather permitting) in the garden, was worth raving about with a grand selection of dishes to choose from. Their afternoon tea is becoming renowned in York, with tourists beginning to add it to their must-see itineraries. Who wouldn't enjoy clotted cream filled scones in the pretty walled garden in the sun?
   The location is good, with added peace and privacy from a small tree-lined courtyard for parking.