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Brook and Wilde Ultima (medium) mattress review: The only mattress you’ll ever need?

Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
2,200
in king size (inc VAT)

Brook and Wilde’s top-end model lives up to its name, offering unrivalled levels of comfort and support in all sleeping positions

Pros 
Supportive and very comfortable
Cooler than most hybrid mattresses
Non-turn design means it’s low maintenance
Cons 
Very expensive
Nothing else of note
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We’ve already tested Brook and Wilde’s Lux and Elite mattresses and liked both very much. So why would you spend more on the brand’s top-end model, the Ultima?

Brook and Wilde claims it’s the “most technologically advanced” mattress it has ever created, but does hi-tech necessarily equate to a better night’s sleep, or is it an exercise in unnecessary excess? As with many luxury products, it’s difficult to make a case that the Ultima represents the very best value for money but, if you can afford it, this is among the very best mattresses we've tested.

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Brook and Wilde Ultima mattress review: What do you need to know

As with the models lower down in Brook and Wilde's range, you can choose from three different levels of firmness: soft, medium and firm. In keeping with our Lux and Elite reviews, we went down the middle and chose medium. Whichever you choose, however, the mattress is also backed by a 100-night comfort guarantee.

This means if you don’t get on well with it for any reason you can return it for a full refund. That’s a significant boon when you’re spending this amount of your hard-earned money on a mattress and means you can fully test it out without taking any financial risk.

As for its construction, where the Lux and Elite are made up from five and six layers of foam and springs, respectively, the Ultima has seven. Below a breathable top layer of foam, there’s an open-cell foam comfort layer and then the mattress has a layer of 2000 tiny “nano” springs, which deliver both comfort and support.

Next up is a foam support layer that varies according to the firmness you choose. Between this and 4,000 full-size springs below, there’s what Brook and Wilde calls a dynamic airflow system, which “actively draws fresh air into the core of your mattress”. Finally, below the full-size pocket springs, the Ultima has a high-density foam foundation.

Covering the mattress, there’s a high-tech thermic fabric that the brand claims cools the temperature by 2°C. Between this and the top foam layer, there’s also a breathable mattress cover that Brook and Wilde says reduces the stress on the top foam layer. As with the Elite, this is removable and can be machine washed at 30 degrees.

Because Brook and Wilde uses “wave technology” in that foam support layer to deliver different levels of support for your neck, shoulders and hips, the Ultima is not only non-turn, but shouldn’t ever be rotated (the logo should always remain at the foot of the bed). It’s difficult to say what that means for its longevity but the mattress is backed by a ten-year guarantee and, as I’ll come onto below, this design can make a notable difference to your comfort.

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The only other thing worth pointing out at this stage is that the Ultima comes in a more limited range of sizes than its stablemates. Indeed, there’s no single size, so you’ll need to choose from double, king or super king.

Brook and Wilde Ultima mattress review: Price and competition

There’s no doubt this is a premium mattress. With prices starting at £1,900 in a double and rising to £2,200 and £2,600 in king and super king sizes, it’s the second most expensive mattress we’ve tested at Expert Reviews at the time of writing, only behind the Tempur Original Supreme.

When it comes to mattresses that arrive rolled up and vacuum-packed at your doorstep, the Simba Hybrid Luxe is perhaps its closest rival and it’ll set you back £1,699 and £1,909 in double and king sizes. The Simba Hybrid Pro and Luxe are somewhat unique in the bed-in-a-box space in that they have a wool comfort layer that aims to keep you cool at night.

Best alternatives and where to buy them: Tempur Original Supreme | Buy now from Tempur Simba Hybrid Luxe | Buy now from Simba Simba Hybrid Pro | Buy now from Simba

Brook and Wilde Ultima mattress review: Performance and comfort

All of Brook and Wilde’s mattresses are delivered to a room of your choice where they’ll be unboxed so they can expand to their full size. What struck me immediately about the Ultima is how little smell it emitted after being recently unwrapped. This lack of “offgassing” odour was something I also experienced with the Elite and is a good indication that the foam used is of good quality.

Compared to the “medium” Elite mattress, I found the Ultima a little firmer and, in some ways, that’s a good thing. Indeed, where the Elite is a brilliant choice for side sleepers in a medium firmness, I found that the Ultima delivers plenty of support regardless of your sleeping position to the extent that I haven’t found myself favouring lying on my side over lying on my back or vice versa. It’s worth adding that I weigh around 70kg, so if you’re much heavier or lighter, your experience may differ.

However, in my view, the Ultima’s “wave technology”, with its softer support around the shoulders, undoubtedly does a better job of accommodating a side profile than my medium firmness pocket sprung mattress, which offers the same level of support from head to toe. That’s a definite perk to the non-rotate design, then, and despite there being plenty of comfort in the upper foam layers, I also found my hips never dropped uncomfortably low when lying on my back.

Although there’s perhaps slightly less edge support than you’d find in a traditional pocket sprung mattress, the Ultima also feels stable when used on a sprung slatted bed and it does a good job of avoiding ever making you feel too enveloped, as can be the case with many foam-and-spring hybrids.

That’s not to say the mattress’ properties don’t change at all as it warms up. As can be the case with many foam-topped mattresses, the Ultima can feel a little softer as the night progresses and the bed heats up but not jarringly so and not in a way that diminishes the support it offers.

So how does it perform in the heat stakes? I think it’s very difficult for synthetic materials to ever compete with natural upholstery in a mattress, but I never felt like the Ultima’s comfort layers were radiating heat, which isn’t uncommon with other foam-based mattresses and mattress toppers. In fact, I’d argue that the Ultima is one of the most traditional-feeling bed-in-a-box mattresses I’ve ever tested, which is high praise indeed.

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Brook and Wilde Ultima mattress review: Verdict

So what’s not to like? Besides the lofty price, there’s no fault I can find in the Brook and Wilde Ultima and, for that reason, it’s a shoo-in for our Best Buy award. It's as good as the excellent Elite mattress from Brook and Wilde, only more versatile, because it feels equally brilliant in all sleeping positions.

Sure, there are cheaper mattresses available. The Simba Hybrid Pro is still our pick of the bunch if you’ve got a budget of around £1500. However, if you’re looking for a mattress that does it all well and still comes with the benefit of a money-back guarantee, the Ultima could be the one for you. If money were no object, this mattress would be very high on my shopping list.

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