The first written evidence of the Chewton Glen House dates from 1732, when documents detailing ‘premises and land known as Chewton Glen House in the parishes of Milton and Highcliffe in the County of Southampton’, were drawn up. It is at this time that construction work may have begun. The 1720s and 1730s were the heyday of the new classical Palladian style of architecture, and many country houses were modelled on this style. The house appears to have remained substantially in this form until the first decade of the 20th century.
Captain Marryat, author of the children’s classic Children of the New Forest was a naval captain and novelist. His brother George, who was an army captain, lived at Chewton Glen in about 1820 and it is possible that on his visits to the area while on anti-smuggling duties he was inspired to write the book. From 1856-88 the house was owned by the Elphinstone family. When Colonel Edward Tinker bought the estate in about 1900 he set about remodelling it. The facades were re-faced in brick, in the fashion of the Queen Anne Revival Style popularised by Norman Shaw. Also typical of this style, on the west side of the present house is an imposing doorway with a shell motif contained within a generous pediment. Gabled projections were added to the block-like earlier house, and the main entrance was placed at the south front.
The estate included virtually all land from Barton to Hordle and by 1958 comprised six farms including Taddiford, Beckton, and Ashley Manor, nine cottages and 1,000 acres. The sale brochure suggested that it could be split up for gravel extraction, building or holiday camps. Between 1947 and 1967 the property had three different owners, and it was the Duval family who first turned it into a hotel. The Skan family purchased the hotel in January 1966 and transformed it into its current guise as an English country house hotel. The Skan family sold the hotel in 2007 to private owners who were previously long standing guests of the hotel.
The gallery below contains images from the grounds of Chewton Glen.