St Bride’s Spa Hotel, Pembrokeshire
If you’re looking for somewhere to decompress, this sleek spa hotel, overlooking the golden sweep of Saundersfoot beach, would be an ideal choice. Treatment rooms and relaxation areas surround an outdoor, infinity-edge hydro pool that looks directly across to the sea, while the treatment menu includes Caudalie and Voya therapies. Most of the 34 rooms have great views, and the Gallery Bar terrace is the perfect spot for a sunset cocktail. Chefs in the Cliff restaurant make the most of the local fishing boats, while vegans have their own menu.
Doubles from £200 BB; stbridesspahotel.com
The Gallivant, Camber Sands, East Sussex
A chilled out, West Coast vibe seeps through this beachfront bolthole set among the dunes and offering daily yoga classes, mindful beach walks and wine tastings, alongside facials and massages in the cute Beach Hut mini-spa. Bedrooms are chic and contemporary, with tongue-and-groove paneling, statement headboards and marble bathrooms; beachfront deck rooms boast private balconies. Dinners of hyper-local ingredients – Sussex asparagus, Rye Bay silver mullet – come with a wide selection of English wines.
Doubles from £180, room only; no under-16s; thegallivant.co.uk
The Pig on the Beach, Studland, Dorset
A former National Trust property, this quirky, yellow-walled mansion is now home to the Pig’s particular brand of gastro-hotel. The restaurant serves a 25-mile menu, with many ingredients sourced from the Pig’s own kitchen garden, while the Wood Ovens is an outdoor space cooking sourdough pizzas to be enjoyed with English fizz or local ciders. For the ultimate beach views, book one of the two shepherd’s huts in the garden, or up the romance factor with a night in one of the dovecotes.
Doubles from £225, room only; thepighotel.com
The Clifton, Shanklin, Isle of Wight
A classic Victorian seaside hotel, the Clifton in Shanklin has been revamped into the kind of place that feels both delightfully old-fashioned and quietly contemporary. The hotel’s wide veranda is the ideal place on which to curl up with a good book or simply soak up the amazing sea views, while the conservatory is a lovely spot for breakfasts, cream teas or a languid beer or two. There’s no restaurant, but plenty of places to eat within walking distance, as is the train station, making it an ideal car-free break.
Doubles from £136 B&B; no dogs or children under 10; thecliftonshanklin.co.uk
The Beach at Bude, Cornwall
This is one of the best-value hotels on the north Cornwall coast, where rooms channel a New England theme, with limed-oak furniture, Lloyd Loom chairs and sumptuous feather duvets – perfect for collapsing on after a day battling the surf. It’s ideal for walkers, too, with the South West Coast Path close by, and the outdoor deck is the place for a post-hike pint. There are regular live music evenings and dinner in the Elements restaurant is fuss-free pizza, pasta and hearty pub classics, served with gorgeous views over Summerleaze Beach.
Doubles from £105 B&B; thebeachatbude.co.uk
The Watergate Bay Hotel, Cornwall
A perennial family favorite, this bright and breezy hotel – set back from one of Cornwall’s most glorious beaches – is as good for teens as toddlers, with surf and swimming lessons, yoga classes and an Ofsted-registered kids’ club. The three restaurants include the Living Space, an informal lounge-style eatery that serves everything from sharing platters and early kids’ dinner to cream teas and cocktails. Rooms range from new “beach lofts” with surf-in, surf-out access to family suites and apartments.
Doubles from £220 B&B; watergatebay.co.uk
The Blakeney Hotel, Blakeney, Norfolk
Set on the town’s tranquil quay, with spectacular views across the estuary to the salt marshes of Blakeney Point, this charming hotel is as welcoming to families as walkers, birdwatchers and couples looking for somewhere peaceful to recharge. Bedrooms ooze classic, understated charm with crisp white linens and muted decor; interconnecting and dog-friendly rooms are available, many with huge views over the water. The indoor pool is an option if the weather is cool, while the terrace and south-facing gardens are a dream for lazy, sunny afternoons.
Doubles from £153 B&B; blakeney-hotel.co.uk
Argyll Hotel, Isle of Iona, Scotland
Cozy, personal and with magnificent views across the Sound of Iona, the Argyll offers a traditional Scottish welcome, spectacular seafood and simple, comfortable rooms, all set against the island’s wild, atmospheric beauty. A member of the Mull and Iona Food Trail, the Argyll offers homemade cakes and afternoon teas alongside dinners of sustainably landed fish and shellfish. Dogs are welcome and cots can be provided; and the extra £20 for sea-view rooms is more than worth it.
Doubles from £130 B&B; argyllhoteliona.co.uk
Drakes, Brighton, East Sussex
Mix beachy days and party nights at this chic boutique hotel, fronting on to Marine Drive with the sea directly opposite. Ocean-view rooms, with floor-to-ceiling sash windows, are the ones to book, but the more affordable city-view rooms are equally stylish and all come with White Company toiletries, fresh coffee and Twining’s teas. The Bar at Drakes is a great place to start a night out, or reserve a table for dinner at Amarillo, which offers a six-course tasting menu (with veggie equivalent).
Doubles from £112, room only; drakesofbrighton.com
Saunton Sands Hotel, Devon
This is the view to beat; the vast sweep of dune-backed sands at Saunton is one of the most spectacular coastal sights in the country. The hotel sits high above the water, with expansive gardens and an outdoor pool, while indoors the Source Spa has a heated pool with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the Atlantic. The hotel has its own restaurant, the Beachside Grill, right on the sands, while the dining room serves upmarket British dishes.
Doubles from £256 B&B; sauntonsands.co.uk
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