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The Tower House, Oxford

The Tower House

This modest 17th-century townhouse has just eight rooms, all unique in size, layout and decor. Original features including cast iron fireplaces and exposed beams are found alongside large mirrors, quirky artwork and antique, reclaimed or painted furniture.

Views from rooms at the front overlook Jesus College while rooms at the back are built into part of Oxford's original medieval city wall. Breakfast is served at the Turl Street Kitchen next door.

Although facilities at The Tower House are simple, its central location and delightful staff more than make up for this. All profits go to a charity called Oxford Hub — a student-led group that enables Oxford students to support disadvantaged individuals in the local community.

Our rating: Medium

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Rooms

Built across a building that’s between 400 and 600 years old, rooms are quirky and characterful with original features such as fireplaces and exposed wooden beams. Some are even built into the original 13th-century city walls. Contemporary elements include large beds, flat screen TVs as well as tea- and coffee-making facilities. Views to the front overlook the master’s private garden at Jesus College, while rooms at the back have limited views but are still light and airy and are quieter than those at the front, which can experience some noise from the street. Most rooms have en suite shower rooms, with the Deluxe Double rooms offering either a walk-in shower or a roll-top bathtub.

Location

The Tower House is located in the heart of the city, surrounded by many of the Oxford colleges. The main city sights, shopping streets and parks are all just a short walk away.

Food and drink

Breakfast is served next door at the affiliated restaurant, Turl Street Kitchen. Hot cooked options are available alongside continental choices of pastries and toast. Lunch and dinner can also be served here, or there are a large number of good dining options nearby.

Accessibility

The Tower House isn’t really suitable for wheelchair users as, although there’s one ground-floor room, the building is listed, so corridors and entrances are narrow, floors are uneven and there’s a small step to enter the property.

Our opinion

A simple but characterful option in the heart of the city, The Tower House offers a charming home-away-from-home experience. It’s worth noting that part of its character comes from its narrow staircases, uneven floors, and low ceilings in some rooms.

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Nearby accommodation

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Places & hotels on the map

    Alternative places to stay nearby

    Where possible, we like to offer a range of accommodation for each stop of your trip, chosen by our specialists as some of their favorite places to stay. To help you make the right choice, we give each property a rating based on its facilities and service, but we also look for hotels with distinct character or a location that can’t be bettered.

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      The grande dame of Oxford establishments, the Macdonald Randolph Hotel is full of history and character and offers old world charm, a range of dining options, spa facilities and a central location with easy access to the city’s museums and colleges.

    • Malmaison Oxford, Oxford

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      A modern, boutique hotel set in a converted prison building and located in the shadow of a Norman castle, Malmaison is set in Oxford’s most historic area yet within an easy walk of the city's colleges and museums.

    • Mercure Oxford Eastgate, Oxford

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    • Old Bank Hotel, Oxford

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      A historic building with a contemporary, modern style and a full range of facilities, the Old Bank Hotel has a wonderful, central location offering easy access to the city’s main sights, colleges and museums.

    • Old Parsonage Hotel, Oxford

      Old Parsonage Hotel

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      This small, 17th-century hotel is a tranquil retreat in the heart of Oxford. The charming building retains many original features which are combined with rich, contemporary décor to excellent effect.

    Experiences while staying here

    The following activities are designed to give you the most authentic experiences of the area where you’re staying. We work with local guides, who use their knowledge and often a resident’s eye to show you the main sights and more out-of-the-way attractions. Our specialists can also suggest outdoor pursuits and activities, such as cooking classes, that will introduce you to the traditions of the area’s inhabitants.

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    • Oxford walking tour
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      Walk through the medieval streets of Oxford guided by a university graduate to seek out some of the city's more interesting colleges, chapels and laneways as you follow in the footsteps of famous writers, politicians or philosophers.

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