The Sensory Storytelling Experience at The Queens Hotel, Cheltenham


Have you ever visited somewhere and been reminded about that experience through a particular scent? Or do you wear a perfume simply because it makes you think of a special occasion? Scent can be a powerful memory trigger that makes us feel emotive and nostalgic about certain experiences. To celebrate the power of scent and it's ability to make us remember some of fondest memories, MGallery by Sofitel has just launched a brand new sensory storytelling experience at three of their luxurious UK properties - The Francis Hotel in Bath, The Castle Hotel in Windsor and finally the Queens Hotel in Cheltenham, where I was recently invited to trial this innovative experience for myself.

Partnering up with renowned scent historian Lizzie Ostrom from Odette Toilette, MGallery by Sofitel has created three new fragrance collections inspired by the heritage, personality and individual stories of each boutique hotel. Referencing the hotel's unique positioning and drawing from archival research on eighteenth and nineteenth century perfume formulations, guest are able to choose their fragrance as a finishing touch to their room or suite during their stay.


The Queens Hotel in Cheltenham first opened its doors on the 21st July 1838 and was named after Queen Victoria to celebrate her coronation. Since 1955 the  hotel has been listed a Grade II English Heritage building as it retains many of its original features, including wallpaper designed by Pugin, which is the same wallpaper that is featured in the houses of parliament. These days the hotel is popular with locals and visitors alike in Cheltenham, particularly those who visit Cheltenham for the races.

When I arrived at Queens hotel, I was greeted by a member of staff who led me to a table featuring a trio of perfumery bottles and I asked to pick my favourite scent. Each scent has been curated to tell a story about the hotel and the towns heritage. I chose the 'Eau D'Ange' which had a warming scent derived from a mix of cardamom, cinnamon and cedar. The scent was created to replicate the fragrances worn in the 1800s and it is also a known aphrodisiac (although that wasn't the primary reason I chose it, I promise).


After my scent choice had been noted, it was delivered to my room and placed into a machine that dispersed it at a frequency of my liking via a remote control. During our visit to Cheltenham, we stayed in the Cambray suite, which is one of four suites in the hotel named after local spas. The suite was spacious with a very large bed, Nespresso machine, stylish sofa and free standing bath with White company toiletries and large shower space.  It was the epitome of luxury and the warming cinnamon aroma added to the experience, from the moment I walked into the hotel room, I was instantly relaxed.


Once we had relaxed in our hotel room and freshened up, we headed down for the sensory storytelling afternoon tea. The sensory afternoon tea enables guests to learn about some of the individual notes and materials that make up each of the hotels signatures scents via smell and taste through a specially-created signature cocktail and Afternoon Tea which heroes particular fragrance notes from the hotel's collection, The Queen's Eau D'Ange afternoon tea features a selection of traditional finger sandwiches, apple cheesecake, lavender macarons, Gin-flavoured sorbet, rose chocolate opera, Cinnamon-infused biscuits and plain or raisin scones which locally sourced preserves. To accompany the afternoon tea, we had a sensory storytelling signature cocktail called 'Rose Drop' which had a floral taste and featured Jinzu Gin. The Jinzu Gin cocktail is one of the best cocktails I have ever had - it was not too floral and it tasted very delicate, light, it was so easy to drink. The cakes and sandwiches from the afternoon tea were all superb and the Gin-flavoured sorbet made me a wonderful palette cleanser. 

Overall I thoroughly enjoyed all aspects sensory storytelling experience and I think it was a lovely touch to our stay. I really think scent really does help us remember certain memories and different fragrances can help enhance our moods, which is something that is really important when you're taking a trip away. The sensory storytelling experience is £170pp which includes overnight stay, room fragrance, afternoon tea and the Jinzu cocktail.

*I was a guest free of charge in exchange for this review


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13 comments

  1. This is a completely unique experience that never heard of. It's so clever and cool. It's amazing the things you remember/memories given from sights, music, smell and even taste :) x

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  2. What a brilliant experience, this hotel looks very nice and the food looks lovely too

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  3. Somed gorgeous photos here - sounds like an amazing experience and I'm a sucker for a good Afternoon Tea!

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  4. What a nice experience! I love the idea of the room fragrance. I hope I can try this too.

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  5. That's such an unusual experience but the price for a suite and all the food does sound interesting x

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  6. Now that is an unusual experience and that wall paper is something else!

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  7. What an unusual experience, I have never heard of any such thing..It sounds interesting.

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  8. There's something about going into a beautiful smelling room that is so luxurious. Lavender is the one that always gets me, takes me right back to spending time with my grandma in her garden amongst the lavender bushes

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  9. I can't wait to read more about your trip... And I hope you'll have another article... xx You will like to see more fun from here.

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  10. What a lovely thing to do, so unusual but definitely think more places should do it! I tend to wear the same perfume because I first started wearing it when I was in Mexico so now it always reminds me of my holidays!

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  11. This sounds like so much fun! I love the interiors here too. I'd love to visit one day to try it out for myself.

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  12. This looks incredible! I have never been to Cheltenham. I would love to check this out if I ever do go x

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  13. This seems like a really unique experience, and the afternoon tea looks swell! x

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