Lord March on Hound Lodge, Goodwood's unique country retreat

The estate's former kennels have been converted into a stately holiday home, proving you can teach an old dog new tricks

Dogs are very important at Goodwood and have been for centuries. The first Duke of Richmond bought a house here in 1697 to use as a hunting lodge and as the home of the world's first major foxhunt, Goodwood's kennels and stables were the best buildings on the estate. Both are perfect examples of what 18th-century English aristocrats tended to do – they spent more time, money and effort on their horses and dogs than they did their guests and friends.

The later kennels, known as Hound Lodge, was incredibly pretty, so we decided to properly restore it and turn it into a magnificent ten-bedroom retreat. The idea was to reflect the lodges that the family owned in Scotland and to celebrate all things to do with Goodwood and our sporting heritage. The building was in the most terrible state when we began. It still had the whelping kennels and the exercise areas in front of the building, although they were in disrepair. We approached architect Ptolemy Dean and asked him to restore the building - and with it, an important part of Goodwood's sporting history.

We wanted to create the ultimate away-from-it-all experience, which is quite difficult to describe. For me, the most important thing is this: hotels have lost so much of their magic and style – they are all so similar nowadays. This led me to wonder how we could create something that would look, feel and operate very differently and provide a completely new experience.

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The ultimate goal of being away is to be somewhere you can really relax, surrounded by the people you love. Essentially, the concept is this: imagine your wealthiest friend's grandest home, with all the best linens, all the best wine and everything else that goes with it. Add his butler and chef, who will do all they can to look after you, taking care of every detail.


At Hound Lodge, you can have the most fantastic and unusual experience. And you can even bring your friends.

LORD MARCH is founder of the Goodwood Festival of Speed and Goodwood Revival. As the heir-apparent to his father, the tenth Duke of Richmond, Lord March runs the Goodwood Estate in West Sussex, which has been in the family for more than 300 years. As well as Hound Lodge, Goodwood is home to golf courses, an aerodrome, a hotel and a racing circuit; goodwood.com/estate

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