Have you ever wanted to sleep where the Beatles slept? During a solo visit to the UK I came across an interesting hotel, The Antrobus Arms, which offers lodging where the Beatles once stayed. I was searching for a place that wouldn’t beggar me with the exchange rate, yet was near to my friend, Keith Kellett, whom I was visiting in Amesbury.
Old Auntie, as the locals call the place, is a 17th Century coaching inn set near Stonehenge and Woodhenge. Not only does the place have history, but it is also where the Fab 4 stayed while filming “Help” on the Salisbury Plain. In fact, the garden area was also the setting for a few “Miss Marples” episodes. Of course, which room did I book, but The Beatles room. My mother was already jealous of my visit to the UK, but she became downright irate when she found out I would be sleeping where Macca slept. It seems that as a teen, she collected every Beatles trading card and Paul McCartney was her fave.
The building is old and a little worn, but still retains its charm. I did check out reviews of the place to see what other travelers had to say online. There were some complaints, but I kept in mind that it was the most affordable lodging in the area and also, well, it was old.
The Beatles Room was pretty cool, with a black and white theme. Photos of the group were placed throughout and the bed was super large and comfy. The floors were creaky as this room is located just above the lobby. I gasped when I stepped into the bathroom, not from horror, but of the various pictures of the Beatles staring at me from the walls. They were plastered with lyrics, newspaper clippings, and collectibles of all things Beatles.
There is a hotel restaurant and lobby bar, but while I was in residence for the night, it was also the city council meeting, which is held at the hotel. I stepped next door to The Kings Arms, which was empty except for me and one other patron. I sat down at booth, ordered a pint of Guinness and asked the server what was the cook’s favorite thing on the menu. The Steak and Ale was the meal of choice, and my American mind chuckled inside, since this was the first time I’d ever had the real deal. I had always thought Steak and Ale was a chain restaurant.
The steamy dish was placed in front of me, topped with a flaky pastry crust. I raised the fork to my lips and had a taste of Heaven. Who knew that in an empty little pub on an afternoon that I would taste such a delicious meal?
You can’t get much more British than this: Beatles, Miss Marples, Stonehenge, Steak and Ale. I sighed in contentment as I had the last sip of my Guinness and scraped the bottom of my dish. The only thing that could complete the evening would be a pot of tea and a hot shower before crawling into bed to rest up for a day of ancient archaeological exploration with Keith Kellett.
I enjoyed that shower immensely, entertaining myself by singing “Paperback Writer” at the top of my lungs. When I turned the shower off, I stopped singing, only to be surprised at Yoko Ono staring at me from the wall and the realization that I could hear everything below me at the lobby desk. I could hear a few people below singing back at me, “Paperback Writer” and laughing.
All I could do was crawl into bed laughing and stare at the pictures of The Beatles surrounding me, knowing that they would be there in the morning when I woke up.