“An asylum, in every sense of the word.” That’s how poet A. E. Housman described Cambridge around the turn of the 20th century. Though the university may overwhelm with its history and academic prowess, the city’s winding medieval lanes, honey-stoned architecture and wide green spaces provide an idyllic refuge from the hustle and bustle of the outside world. You don’t need to be a student to live out the dream. SUITCASE uncovers just how Cambridge engages the heart as well as the mind.


The Varsity Hotel and Spa

Founded by four Cambridge alumni, The Varsity Hotel & Spa sits at the centre of the city, near the River Cam by Magdalene Bridge. Its vibe lies somewhere between a private club and an airy loft. Each room nods to the university with antique furniture names such as The Graduates and The Fellows. Head to the upper storeys or the rooftop garden for stunning views over the romantic college cloisters.

Duke House

Once the student home of the Duke of Gloucester, Duke House is an elegant B&B nestled alongside Christ’s Pieces in the historic heart of Cambridge. Its five en-suite rooms are havens after a day exploring the city – think goose-down bedding, embroidered linens and light, soothing colours. Breakfast features apple juice from the nearby Watergull Orchards and marmalade made by the owner’s mother-in-law all served among Shaker-style cupboards in front of an open fire.  

The Tamburlaine

The Tamburlaine brings a refreshing buzz to the residential and business area of Cambridge, based next to the station but a short amble away from the city centre. This does not mean to say though that the hotel lacks the historical charm and beauty found in the rest of the city. Inspired by Cambridge University alumni and playwright Christopher Marlowe, the 155 rooms (aptly named Fresher, Scholar and Dean) combine gracious tradition with fresh, clean interiors. Indulge in the grandeur of marbled bathrooms and velvet ottomans in the Library, or sip on a cocktail under the neon lights of Steam, a deli by day and bar by night.

The Varsity Hotel & Spa

Duke House

The Tamburlaine

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