Situated on the outskirts of York close to the racecourse, this Queen Anne mansion is one of city’s most glamorous country house hotels. Inside, the marbled entrance hall, sweeping staircase and panelled dining room all speak of landed English gentry, while chef Nicholas Evans sets out his stall with some sharp contemporary cooking in the shape of scallops with pork belly, apple, pine nuts and truffle or silky pumpkin soup with chestnut ravioli and a crisp sage leaf. Mains generally include some Yorkshire Dales beef – otherwise expect wild duck, roast partridge or halibut fillet with langoustine, red wine sauce and diced potato wrapped in crispy leek. To finish, you might fancy a punt on banana and chocolate parfait, apple strudel or orange soufflé with chocolate and orange ice cream. Lunches are excellent value, and the chandeliered drawing room makes a gracious setting for afternoon tea.