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Found: lovely private dining space in Thame

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The private dining space at The Spread Eagle. Happy birthday Sarah!

I had lunch with girlfriends at The Spread Eagle hotel in Thame today and thought this bijou dining space was so cute you’d want to know about it.

The main restaurant in the hotel was empty, so it was lovely to be contained in a light room, perfectly spacious for the six of us (though you could get eight round the table at a push, or ten if you used less extravagant chairs) but intimate enough so that we could just focus on the birthday girl and the bread and olives in front of us.

You can’t see it from the photo, but there’s glass between the room and the main bar and also a window to the side so you don’t feel anyway hemmed in. The stairs to the toilets are on the other side of the glass so on a busy night you have the occasional pair of eyes looking in to the room. I don’t mind that, but if it’s total privacy you want, there’s a larger  back room you can hire.

Service at The Spread Eagle is an ongoing issue – every time I’ve been it’s slow – but they are so pleasant about it and are so plainly doing their best that it’s impossible to get stroppy. Today the food took a good hour to appear but when it did it was lovely – our party ate roast salmon or confit of duck and knocked back with some champagne which always helps.

Be warned: the styling at The Spread Eagle is an acquired taste. Think Louis XIV meets Lazy Town – oversized throne chairs, lots of faux plastic gilt, and interiors walking the line between kitsch and naff. In an area starved of individuality I rather like the bold approach, but I can see it’s not for everyone.

The room costs £75 + VAT to book, or if it’s available on the day the manager may let you eat in there anyway.

Let me know if you use it, but in the meantime, have a great weekend y’all.







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