For any keen traveller, hotelier or Sunday Times peruser, the 'Best 100 Places to Stay' guide has become a voice of authority when looking for a break in the UK. Yesterday, the 5th annual guide was published and 9 out of the "nation's best" 100 hotels are based here in the Cotswolds.
The guide is separated into 10 categories; Foodie, Budget, Seaside, City, Country, Family, Spas, Romantic, B&B and Pubs.
Here are the 9 establishments that featured with words taken from The Sunday Times
The Rectory Hotel, Nr Malmesbury
Former music-industry executive Alex Payne wanted his renovation of this lovely Cotswold manor in Crudwell to be both country and rock 'n' roll. The Georgian sitting rooms are bucolic and relaxed, but the mirror-backed, marble-topped bar is built for bad behavior.
Way before that, there's the prospect of modern British classics such as veal with baby artichoke and pork chop with capers in the conservatory dining room. The 18 rooms have original beams, velvet bedheads and cool art on the walls.
Doubles from £150 B&B
The Painswick, Painswick
This one scores a full house in Cotswolds-cliché bingo: a mullioned 18th-century mansion surrounded by mellow-stone cottages, overlooking the fulsome folds of the Slad Valley, outside Stroud. It's surprisingly affordable, which helped it win our Hotel of the Year crown in 2016.
There's a cocktail bar in an old chapel, a dinky spa and a tongue-in-cheek vibe (witness the Full Elvis breakfast, with waffles and peanut butter). The 16 rooms offer high-quality finishes and thoughtful touches such as homemade madeleines.
Doubles from £129
Soho Farmhouse, Great Tew
Soho Farmhouse's 40 cabins, set in 100 acres in Great Tew, nail the rustic-chic look, with slatted walls, woodburning stoves and homespun furniture. An electric milk float does the rounds dispensing "prinks" (pre-party drinks), and you'll want to spend time in the Boathouse, which has a magnificent 135ft indoor/outdoor pool, linked by a bridge to the vast spa.
Doubles from £350
The Bull Hotel, Fairford
There could be famous faces at the bar of this newcomer in the Cotswold town of Fairford - Kate Moss and Gary Barlow are friends of the owners - but it's the bull's head mounted over the fireplace that steals the limelight.
Downstairs, the decor is a theatrical mix of bottle-green walls, nostalgic photos and a coffee table inlaid with crystals. There's a candlelit dining room in the converted stables, and the 21 rooms feature Egyptian-cotton linens, feather duvets and vintage pieces.
Doubles from £100, B&B
The Fish Hotel, Broadway
High design values combine with plenty of highchairs at this bucolic bolthole outside the sleepy Cotswolds village of Broadway.
There's a cosy bar and a laid-back lounge that has a central woodburner, patchworks of comfy chairs in biscuity fabrics and shelves of fresh herbs. The staff, who could outlast and children's TV presenter for enthusiasm and energy, are on hand to organise activities in the Fish's 400-acre playground, including archery, off-roading and Segway safaris.
The 68 bedrooms are spread across four buildings and are fairly compact, with cosy armchairs and sheepskin throws, and there are five Hilly Huts - more woodburners, hot tub, private deck - aimed at couples.
Family rooms from £200 B&B
Calcot Manor, Tetbury
Don't feel too guilty about abandoning the kids as you soak in a lavender-lined outdoor hot tub, staring across at a roaring fire. They're in good hands at Calcot, which has Ofsted-registered nannies, arts and crafts for under-8s, PlayStations and a 12-seat cinema for bigger boys and girls, and babysitting for £10 an hour. The spa had a £300,000 makeover this year, including an impressive refit of the gym. We loved the muscle-melting Hydrotherm treatment, where you lie on warm-water cushions.
The bedrooms at this converted farm outside Tetbury do a nice line in understated glamour. Dress up for modern British dishes at the Conservatory restaurant; if you'd rather keep it casual. skinny jeans will do just fine at the Glumstool Inn, Calcot's own country pub. Yes, it does fish and chips.
Doubles from £209, B&B. Family rooms from £229 B&B
Artist Residence (Mr Hanbury's Mason Arms), South Leigh
This is the fourth in a much-loved mini chain of quirky properties, after London, Brighton and Penzance, and the group’s first foray into the countryside. The whimsical approach of the owners, Justin and Charlie Salisbury, transfers brilliantly to this 16th-century thatched pub in the cutesy village of South Leigh, outside Oxford.
Downstairs, there’s a higgledy-piggledy little warren of rooms with flagstone floors, beamed ceilings, oak panels, open hearths, deep leather armchairs and a couple of bars. So far, so standard nice country pub. Yet most country pubs don't have photo galleries of French wrestlers on the walls, or framed girlie playing-card posters, or loos with reclaimed prison-cell doors. Their dining rooms don't have acid-trip floral wallpaper or display cases with human skulls. The food's good, with the talented Leon Smith sicking to tasty classics such as steak with triple-cooked chips.
To win our romantic category, though, a hotel needs to score in the bedroom department. The five here are built into eaves and beamed, with luxurious Volga linen on the extravagant beds and powerful rainforest showers. (The Farmhouse Suite has a freestanding copper bath.) Six more rooms and a cafe housed in outbuildings will arrive next year.
Doubles from £130, B&B
Foxhill Manor, Broadway
First impressions are important. At Foxhill Manor, a sophisticated Arts and Crafts mansion outside of the Cotswold village of Broadway, they'r egathered with bubbly in hand in the stylish sitting room, watching the drama of the Malvern Hills unfold through the window while the faff of check-in is taken care of.
There are eight bedrooms, each one unique: Cupid has a four-poster and side-by-side freestanding baths. There's a cinema for reruns of Casablanca or Gone with the Wind, and dinner can be eaten pretty much anywhere that takes your fancy.
Doubles from £380, B&B
The Bower House, Shipston on Stour
The man behind this excellent restaurant with rooms in Shipston on Stour is Andrew Knight, a former editor of The Economist and the chairman of Times Newspapers. he has teamed up with his novelist daughter Afsaneh, and theyve spent big and, on the available evidence, wisely.
The five bedrooms are six-star havens with bespoke super-king beds. Some have huge shuttered Georgian windows, others light-filled bathrooms with Moorish tiles and marble-topped baths.
Paul Merrony, who gained a loyal following at his Giaconda Dining Room, in London, oversees the menu.
Doubles from £130, B&B
Click HERE to see the full list of the 100 top British hotels