The glasshouses of Bombay Sapphire’s iconic gin distillery in the UK have become synonymous with the brand. Rising from a horseshoe of red brick, these undulating structures have lured many an Instagram-enthusiast to see just what kind of magic they hold within. To see them in person and discover the secrets behind the making of this famous gin, you have to head down to the sleepy Hampshire countryside.
Here you will discover Laverstoke Mill – a 300-year-old paper mill that is now the home of one of the world’s most famous gin brands. In fact, the history of the building dates back even further than that and it is said that there was a mill on the site even as far back as 903AD when the property belonged to the Abbey of St. Peter. In the year 1880 paper for the world’s first postal order was even made here! Around the same time, in 1831, the Dakin family purchased a still, adapting it to perform a process now known as Vapour Infusion – the beginnings of Bombay Sapphire gin as we now know it!
In 2010 the Bombay Spirits Company purchased the mill, transforming it into a playground for adults who love a good G&T and a visit here is like walking into a world of magic, mystery and fun. You can visit the distillery under your own steam on a self-discovery tour, exploring the area at your own pace, marvelling at those glorious botanical filled glasshouses, and discovering the history of this iconic gin, before enjoying a 15-minute laugh-a-minute tour through the actual distilling house. You may be surprised to discover just how small the operation is here to fill all those marvellous blue bottles of gin!
Alternatively, cash out a little extra and the hosted experience means you have a guide the whole way around or take the plunge and indulge in a one-hour cocktail making masterclass with a gin expert! For those who really want to make a meal out of it, the distillery does offer scheduled one-of-a-kind visits, such as themed romantic dinners, horticultural sessions and heritage tours. Whatever you choose to do, you’ll be treated to a gin cocktail of your choice at the end of the tour in the distillery’s very own bar! And don’t forget to pick up a bottle or two on your way out at the onsite shop!