Wivenhoe House Hotel in Colchester, Essex, won the Large Hotel of the Year award, sponsored by Ensors Chartered Accountants, at the East of England Tourism Awards 2023-2024.

The award recognises large full-service hotels that provide exemplary service, a top-quality food offering and a stay that guests will remember for years to come. 

Having operated as a commercial hotel for 11 years, Wivenhoe House Hotel offers a number of historic rooms decorated in their own unique style, along with more contemporary rooms in the Garden Wing – some with their own balcony for enjoying a glass of bubbles and taking in the views.

Further facilities include a brasserie, bar and numerous outside terraces.

Owned by the University of Essex, Wivenhoe House is home to the Edge Hotel School, offering practical experience for hospitality management students. It means that hotel staff also work as teachers and mentors to the next generation of hospitality leaders.

The hotel recently introduced its Wivenhoe LIVE events, aimed at bringing in a younger demographic.

The judges said the hotel “certainly makes a great first impression” with its “beautifully presented” exterior, adding that the greeting from reception staff was “equally impressive, very warm and friendly”.

They said their room “smelt fresh and was spotlessly clean”, while also praising the “excellent food” and “exemplary service” in the restaurant.

Wivenhoe House Hotel should be “justifiably proud” of its work with the University of Essex, the judges added.

Sean Morrison, deputy general manager at Wivenhoe House Hotel, said it was “amazing” to win and that the award is “a real testament to what the team have been able to achieve over the last 12 years” as both a four-star hotel and the Edge Hotel School.

Mr Morrison concluded by saying that, in difficult times, it’s important to celebrate the hospitality industry as one that “brings people together”.

The other finalists in this category were Down Hall Hotel, Spa & Estate and Turing Locke.

The winners of the East of England Tourism Awards 2023-2024 were announced at Snape Maltings, Suffolk, on Thursday, February 15. To find out about all of the winners, click here.

For more information about the awards, please visit tourismawards.co.uk

About the sponsor

Experienced in working with all kinds of tourism businesses, Ensors takes a proactive approach to drive business transformation. As well as preparing end-of-year accounts and audits, it also provides many other services including tax planning, preparing forecasts, bookkeeping support and internal audit requests.

Working from regional offices, Ensors’ team are there whenever you need them. They understand challenges from a local, national and global perspective, including the financial pressures that can arise because of the seasonal nature of many business models.

Whether you’re looking to start up, go for growth or plan your exit strategy, Ensors can advise and support you.