An Inspector calls… at The Great House in Sonning, which has a restaurant with ‘sticky tables, stuffy air and pedestrian food’ and his room has a view of ‘a scruffy garden’
- The Great House is located in Sonning on the banks of the Thames in Berkshire
- It uses the lively Coppa Club next door as its all-day restaurant
- Overall, the Inspector says it has the ‘feel of student halls of residence’
The Coppa Club is news to me. Apparently there are a few branches in and around London — including here in Sonning, on the banks of the Thames in Berkshire.
On the website, it bills itself as a ‘space for eating, drinking, meeting and unwinding’, but when we arrive on a Friday evening it’s the ‘unwinding’ part we find difficult.
On swinging open the door, we are met by a couple enjoying what used to be called ‘heavy petting’. They are practically horizontal on a blue velvet sofa, his hands wandering all over the place; she sliding under his body like a car mechanic in a garage workshop.
One of the rooms inside The Great House. It is located in Sonning on the banks of the Thames in Berkshire
We’re here because we are staying at The Great House next door, which uses the Coppa Club as its all-day restaurant.
Presumably it suits both parties, but it’s irritating that you can’t put your dinner or breakfast or anything you might consume at the Coppa Club on to your room bill to be paid for later.
It’s particularly annoying because our room is across the car park on the second floor in the clock tower building, which means I have to go back to our room after dinner to retreive my wallet, return to the restaurant and then leg it back to the room.
What’s more, the table is sticky, the air stuffy and the food pedestrian. George and Amal Clooney live nearby, but I doubt they come here.
Inside the Coppa Club restaurant next to The Great House. The hotel uses the Coppa Club as its all-day restaurant
The whole confection has the feel of student halls of residence, although our room is comfortable, with bare brick behind the bed and a large bathroom.
But it overlooks someone’s scruffy back garden in one direction, the car park in the other.
Breakfast back at the Coppa Club is a lively affair, with several families adding to the numbers. It’s a chilly morning, but some people are eating outside where the lawn leads down to the river.
The problem is that you don’t feel as though you’re staying in a hotel. It’s really the Coppa Club that sets the tone — and a discordant one at that.
The Great House, Thames Street, Sonning-on-Thames, Berkshire, RG4 6UT. Doubles from £95. Visit greathouseatsonning.co.uk or call 0118 969 2277.