The Varsity Hotel & Spa, Cambridge: Boutique hotel with classic style

Having studied at Oxford, there are few things I’ll admit to liking about rival town Cambridge.  The Varsity Hotel & Spa, however, is one of the great things that I’ll happily own up to!  The riverside hotel is pretty First Class in many ways – chic boutique meets classic Cambridge to fabulous effect.
The Varsity Hotel & Spa: Boutique hotel with classic Cambridge style | Recommended by HYHOI.com | Have You Heard Of It? London bar & restaurant recommendations
Firstly: Location.  Centrally located (though sadly with no car parking nearby), Cambridge’s tourist hotspots are within easy walking distance, and you can even pick up a punt just outside.
The Varsity Hotel & Spa: Boutique hotel with classic Cambridge style | Recommended by HYHOI.com | Have You Heard Of It? bar & restaurant recommendations
The Varsity is home to Glassworks, a high-end fitness and wellness centre in a Conran-designed building.  There’s an Elemis spa, jacuzzi, steam room and sauna for if you want to be pampered, plus a well-equipped gym in a gorgeous high-ceilinged space, that we made full use of during our stay.
Glassworks @ The Varsity Hotel & Spa: Boutique hotel with classic Cambridge style | Recommended by HYHOI.com | Have You Heard Of It? bar & restaurant recommendations
Glassworks @ The Varsity Hotel & Spa: Boutique hotel with classic Cambridge style | Recommended by HYHOI.com | Have You Heard Of It? bar & restaurant recommendations
The hotel restaurant is the River Bar Steakhouse & Grill.  Located on the quayside, it affords brilliant river views as you dine, and specialises in fine steaks and Sunday lunch, and a full hotel breakfast (both buffet and à la carte).
River Bar @ The Varsity Hotel & Spa: Boutique hotel with classic Cambridge style | Recommended by HYHOI.com | Have You Heard Of It? bar & restaurant recommendations
River Bar @ The Varsity Hotel & Spa: Boutique hotel with classic Cambridge style | Recommended by HYHOI.com | Have You Heard Of It? bar & restaurant recommendations
River Bar @ The Varsity Hotel & Spa: Boutique hotel with classic Cambridge style | Recommended by HYHOI.com | Have You Heard Of It? bar & restaurant recommendations
Hope that the weather holds out so that you can venture up to the roof terrace for stunning 360-degree views of the city – the unrivalled vista really is a huge perk of being a Varsity guest.  Weather-permitting there’s a rooftop bar too.
Rooftop views @ The Varsity Hotel & Spa: Boutique hotel with classic Cambridge style | Recommended by HYHOI.com | Have You Heard Of It? bar & restaurant recommendations
Rooftop views @ The Varsity Hotel & Spa: Boutique hotel with classic Cambridge style | Recommended by HYHOI.com | Have You Heard Of It? bar & restaurant recommendations
The hotel décor is striking without being over-the-top – it takes the old fashioned university style and gives it a modern twist.  The Master’s Penthouse Suite on the sixth floor is artfully decorated – with two walls of glass plus a huge four-poster, you can drink in the view without leaving the bed!
Penthouse Suite @ The Varsity Hotel & Spa: Boutique hotel with classic Cambridge style | Recommended by HYHOI.com | Have You Heard Of It? bar & restaurant recommendations
Penthouse Suite @ The Varsity Hotel & Spa: Boutique hotel with classic Cambridge style | Recommended by HYHOI.com | Have You Heard Of It? bar & restaurant recommendations
When booking, try to get a room on as high a floor as possible, preferably on the east side of the building, for the best views.  The cheapest rooms, Graduate Doubles, are small but perfectly formed – fine for a quick city break, and with a very comfy bed!
Fellows Suite @ The Varsity Hotel & Spa: Boutique hotel with classic Cambridge style | Recommended by HYHOI.com | Have You Heard Of It? bar & restaurant recommendations
Fellows Suite @ The Varsity Hotel & Spa: Boutique hotel with classic Cambridge style | Recommended by HYHOI.com | Have You Heard Of It? bar & restaurant recommendations
Cambridge recommendations:
Best coffee in Cambridge?  Hot Numbers – even my coffee shop-owning boyfriend was impressed by this one.
Hot Numbers, Cambridge | Recommended by HYHOI.com | Have You Heard Of It? bar & restaurant recommendations
Hotly-tipped Espresso Library literally just opened too – I’ll definitely be stopping by on my next visit.
Espresso Library, Cambridge | Recommended by HYHOI.com | Have You Heard Of It? bar & restaurant recommendations
Or if you’re more concerned with cake, head to Fitzbillies – decent coffee and famed Chelsea buns.
Fitzbillies, Cambridge | Recommended by HYHOI.com | Have You Heard Of It? bar & restaurant recommendations
Casual dining saviours come in the form of Bread & Meat for fine roast meat sandwiches…
Bread & Meat, Cambridge | Recommended by HYHOI.com | Have You Heard Of It? bar & restaurant recommendations
And Cambridge Chop House for traditional no-nonsense British fare.
Cambridge Chop House | Recommended by HYHOI.com | Have You Heard Of It? bar & restaurant recommendations
If you fancy going upmarket, check out Alimentum and it’s Michelin star…
Alimentum, Cambridge | Recommended by HYHOI.com | Have You Heard Of It? bar & restaurant recommendations
Or bright and breezy, all-organic Cotto.
Cotto, Cambridge | Recommended by HYHOI.com | Have You Heard Of It? bar & restaurant recommendations
The Varsity Hotel & Spa
Thompson’s Lane, Cambridge, CB5 8AQ