Wine & Dine
Our Chocolate Tart with White Chocolate Ice Cream always goes down a storm on our dinner menu. As chocolate desserts are popular (and we like eating any leftovers!) then Andy has decided to try out a couple of new puds.
So, next time you come, you may see the deliciously rich Pot au Chocolat or an indulgent Double Chocolate Cheesecake on the menu.
Neither have been made by Andy before but they both taste great and went down well recently when we tried them out.
If you fancy a real taste of Wales with your meal, we now offer a couple of award winning Welsh spirits from the Penderyn Distillery nestled in the foothills of the Brecon Beacons. We have Brecon Gin and a single malt whisky finished in Madeira casks. We still offer another three brands of gin and eight single malts, perfect in front of our roaring log fire this winter!
Our brand new wine list is also very close now so we’ll have some lovely bottles for you to try, along with our old favourites too.
A work in progress...
With an old building like Plas Dinas the maintenance never really ends. We don’t make things easy for ourselves though as we’re continually trying to improve what we offer our guests. The Deluxe rooms are continuing to get bathroom upgrades, with lovely power showers being fitted in the South and Lady Armstrong-Jones rooms.
The French doors have been replaced at the front of the building and we’ve had some extensive roof repairs completed.
Our window refurbishment programme continues and are all due to be painted this winter. We’ve also made a start on painting the outside of the building to keep it looking beautiful.
Rooms get cosier
We know our rooms are already nice and cosy at night with the fluffy duvets and controllable heating but we just made them even better with a SHEEP hot water bottle in each room.! Andy found them on the internet and fell in love with them...
Whilst talking about the rooms, we must tell you that “Uncle Peter” – our fudge supplier has just won a True Taste of Wales award for his latest Triple Chocolate Cheesecake Fudge. We’re hoping to try some very soon and you may well get a taste yourself on your next stay. We currently have White chocolate and Baileys fudge which is really Moorish.
His full range of delicious fudge can be purchased from
Newsletter | Issue 23| November 2011
Welcome to our final newsletter of 2011
Well, nearly five years have passed since we took over at Plas Dinas and what a half decade it’s been!
We never imagined we’d achieve 5 star, be cooking for Royalty and be on national prime time TV. Though I don’t suppose we anticipated the floods, accidents, escapee farm animals and quite how much hard work it would be either!
We’re still here though and going strong, having just had our annual quality assessment from Visit Wales and probably our best summer yet, despite the recession.
Our thanks go out to all our guests, past, present and future and may you all continue to enjoy relaxing in our home. As ever, we have plenty of news to bring you up to date and also a special five year offer so read on…
See you soon
Now we’ve gone a little quieter, it’s given Andy the opportunity to get out in the garden a lot more. There’s always something to do, but particularly at this time of year when everything needs cutting back, pruning, strimming or dead heading.
The downside to having beautiful trees in the spring and summer is all the leaves in autumn! Unfortunately, only about 50% of the leaves have fallen so far so there’s still plenty to go – luckily our leaf blower makes the job a little easier. We’ve had tree surgeons here recently taking down dead trees and branches – we want to be pro-active and take them down before they are blown down. We have an awful lot of logs to chop and split now but it will keep our fire in the Drawing Room going for some time.
The next job is to get the pots at the front planted up for winter and weed the borders so there’s still plenty to keep us busy!
Five Year Anniversary OFFER!
So, five years have whizzed past and we’ve certainly had many highs, a few lows and met a lot of lovely and interesting people along the way. We’re not quite sure where nearly 2000 days have gone but if you’ve already stayed here, you’ll know we work pretty hard and time always seems to go quickly when you’re busy.
In order to celebrate this mile stone, we’ve got a great winter offer for you…
If you stay two nights in ANY room between 30th November 2011 and 31st January 2012, we’ll give you a 3rd night for just a FIVER along with a FIVE piece Molton Brown gift set.
The offer is subject to availability and has to be booked on our own website quoting “£5 Offer” in the “Comments” box. Not applicable to existing bookings. Not cancellable or changeable. Your card will be charged on booking. Three nights must be consecutive. Offer must be booked by 30th November and is only open to Guest List subscribers who had signed up by 9th Nov 2011.
Four in a Bed
Our show was repeated on More 4 recently and has also been shown in Australia. This resulted in some great feedback and more Facebook fans and Guest List subscribers - so welcome to you all! We continue to receive lovely emails from viewers and it’s good to see the steady flow of guests as a result of liking what they saw on TV.
We had a stand at a wedding show in Manchester a few weeks ago and it was amazing how many people recognised us. We also saw someone else who was in the show two weeks after us so we were able to swap “insider” stories!
If you’re not following us on Facebook or Twitter, don’t forget this keeps you up to date with things as they happen here and we also have special offers exclusive to both sites.
The Hotel Inspector(s)...
OK so we were bitterly disappointed in wasn't Alex Polizzi but only last week got a Visit Wales inspector who hadn't seen Plas Dinas since we were first graded 4 stars back in 2007. He saw a massive difference since then in the quality of what we now offer our guests and we had some good initial feedback and are confident that we'll strengthen our five star rating. Our ultimate aim is to achieve a Gold Award.
Our AA anonymous inspection is still due any time now so fingers crossed, though we’re sure that will be fine too... We hope to retain our AA Dinner Award and become "Highly Commended" five star which only the top 10% of all five star establishments achieve. Watch this space...
West Wing Upgrade
West Wing Cottage and Plas Dinas Lodge, our two self-catering cottages continue to be successful. Ready for the 2012 season, we’ve re-decorated the downstairs of West Wing and added some extra heating which is independent to the main house. There’s a new heated towel radiator in the bathroom along with a fantastic new power shower and a 32" LCD TV to enjoy your Sky+ in the lounge.
The Lodge will be also getting a new coat of paint later this year when we have a couple of weeks with no bookings.
We always get lots of comments like “it’s the most well equipped cottage we’ve ever stayed in” – that’s because we do listen to feedback and usually if someone suggests something they’d have found useful, then we add it. We realise particularly at this time of the year that the weather’s not always brilliant but as they’re cosy, have lots of games, Sky+, open fires and cosy heating, you’ll always have a great week anyway.
We have been booked back to back all season this year so we suggest that you book your preferred dates for 2012 as soon as you can. Online booking for next year is already available and filling up fast.
Portmeirion for a pound
You can keep the costs down when you visit us at this time of year as Portmeirion entry is only £1 until the end of March. We have some vouchers here or you can print one off the Portmeirion website.
For those that don’t know, it’s a unique village set on its own private peninsula on the southern shores of Snowdonia. It was created by Welsh architect Clough Williams-Ellis between 1925 and 1975 to demonstrate how a naturally beautiful place could be developed without spoiling it.
Portmeirion is made up of about 50 pretty buildings and surrounded by 70 acres of sub-tropical woodland gardens.
We have prepared a comprehensive list of things to do while visiting the area, just check our website.
CONGRATULATIONS to Barbara Crocker who won the recent Great Little Places competition to stay with us as Plas Dinas Country House!
We have been selected to appear in CONDÉ NAST JOHANSEN'S prestigious new guide book - "Recommended Small Hotels, Inns & Restaurants 2012". It's out now and there's also a copy in our rooms to flick through.