At this very moment, someone, somewhere on the grounds of Estelle Manor, the grand English estate commanding 60 acres in the ceremonial county of Oxfordshire, is almost certainly having a delightful time. With 108 rooms and suites, four restaurants, a 25-meter heated swimming pool, fitness center, padel tennis court, kids’ club, private work and lounge spaces — and a new neoclassical Roman bathhouse fit for the emperors who invented the concept, there is an amenity for practically every whim and inclination.
And we haven’t even talked about the outdoor adventure programming, which aims to match the renowned romp of Scotland’s Gleneagles (an Ennismore property) with expert archery, axe throwing, clay shooting, summer boating at the nearby Blenheim Palace, and long, guided tours through the area’s extensive network of public pathways — which one may attempt here, if properly outfitted in Le Chameau wellington boots.
In 2018, the Indian-born, London Business School educated entrepreneur Sharan Pasricha, founder of Ennismore and the Hoxton hotels, bought a fading Jacobean estate called Eynsham Hall. When he reopened the property in spring 2023 as Estelle Manor, he had transformed a building into a luxury destination designed by Roman and Williams. The country club and hotel now evokes the heyday of Downton Abbey — but with free wifi and attainable antibiotics.
Estelle has created such a stir in this sleepy bucolic town, the biggest concern is the threat of paparazzi when A-list celebrities turn up. No drone footage is permitted on the grounds, and don’t even think about snapping selfies in the private club rooms. In this business, these are good problems. The kind of problems Four Seasons founder Isadore Sharp or hotelier Ian Schrager mastered decades ago. The guiding principles that made them great are now apparent in many of Ennismore’s 17 brands — currently comprising 144 operating hotels and resorts (including Gleneagles, Hoxton, SLS, Delano, Mondrian, Mama Shelter, and Rixos), with 100 more in the pipeline.
The company places high importance on creating ambiance and glamor without pretension. “We want class, but not formality… a standard of relaxed elegance,” wrote Isadore Sharp in his 2009 memoir, Four Seasons: The Story of a Business Philosophy, which Pasricha cites as inspiration. Today, Sharan and his wife, Eiesha Bharti Pasricha, artistic director of Estelle Manor and its sister property, Maison Estelle — one of Mayfair’s most desirable membership clubs — have become luxury travel’s new power couple. Notably, the Pasrichas privately own the Manor lease, which means they have full creative freedom to run the show.