Our New Years Eve jaunt to the multi-award winning Bedruthan Steps Hotel and Spa in North Cornwall was probably one of my finer last-minute getaway decisions of 2016.
We’ve been away before over Christmas, so thought we’d give a UK staycation a whirl to celebrate the start of a new year. I’ll be honest, when the car pulled up to the hotel I wasn’t inspired. If it wasn’t for the big sign I would have been convinced I was at the wrong place. The unappealing exterior resembles a post-war school building rather than a luxury hotel. Fear not though, as soon as you step beyond the threshold you are instantly transported to a modern, chic and cosy world catering to children and adults alike.
Perched on a cliff with spectacular views of the Atlantic ocean and Mawgan Porth beach. A short stroll down some steep steps you can enjoy the expanse of golden sand at low tide in the summer. Or if visiting in winter like us revel in a crisp early morning walk along the beach to blow away those stubborn cobwebs. The dramatic scenery is jaw-dropping. Grey, eerie misty views, crashing waves against the nearby rocks and mysterious caves revealed by the receding tide. The girls were in their element. Summer or winter there’s something so mesmerising about being close to the sea.
Located between Padstow and Newquay you’re well placed to explore both towns, but far enough away to enjoy the peaceful North Cornish coast away from the busy crowds. And for all you gourmet foodies out you’re in striking distance of Fifteen at Watergate Bay and Rick Stein’s Seafood Restaurant in Padstow.
The hotel has been in the hands of the same family for over 50 years. During that time it’s always been a place ahead of its time in the decor and design stakes. In a hotel so family friendly you’re not faced with tired old sofas, crayon marks on the walls or stained, tatty carpets. It’s a world away with its Scandi inspired retro cool.
We stayed in one of the fabulously bright double rooms, interconnecting to a children’s room with single beds. All the rooms come with baby listening services, a major plus for parents who want to enjoy a quiet dinner whilst the children sleep soundly. There are also villa rooms and family suites with bunk beds available.
There are two restaurants, The Wild Cafe, a funky bright stylised area serving simple and contemporary food for all the family. It comes with all the plastic eating paraphernalia you’d need for little ones, along with high chairs, rocking chairs, booster seats and microwaves dotted around. This place has thought of everything to make mealtimes stress free. They also serve a high tea for children between 4 – 6 pm so once the children are fed, they can be whisked off by the on-site babysitter if you choose so to take advantage of some mummy and daddy relax time.
The second restaurant is a smarter affair, The Herring an intimate adults-only dining space focusing on serving fresh Cornish produce. One of the best things is both dining areas look out over the cove so you can enjoy some of the most amazing sunsets.
The hotel is like an entertainment paradise to kids. The Ofsted registered childcare is a godsend. Particularly as they offer two hours free childcare for each day of your stay with three timeslots – 09:30, 11:30 and 1:30 (subject to availability).
For over eights you have the youth club ‘Z Club’ free from 09:30 – 3:30pm. During the school holidays they also offer evening clubs for the over fives from 7:30 – 10:30pm at a cost. These clubs were incorporated in our New Year’s Eve package and the girls enjoyed their own New Year’s Eve party and were invited to Cinderella’s Ball.
And when they want a break from the kids clubs there is also an indoor Jungle Tumble soft play area with Ligne Rosset armchairs to keep the supervising parents both comfy and stylish, table tennis, snooker table, table football, board games, and an outdoor play area (zip wire, assault course and trampoline) and cinema room.
I’ll let you into another secret on New Years day. They also collected the girls at 8am, took them to the kids breakfast buffet and entertained them until noon. All in the name of the parents enjoying a lie-in. Hallelujah! If that excites you, check out their special baby and toddler breaks. And if you haven’t got kids, don’t let the family-friendly thing put you off as you’ll read next.
Don’t worry! The adults do pretty well on the activities front too, there are indoor and outdoor swimming pools, tennis courts, a gym, a spa with steam rooms, treatments and sauna.
I was blown away by the outdoor sensory spa garden where you can book an hour-long, seven-stage experience designed to detoxify and renew your body – Utterly amazing. Mr S and I enjoyed a hot poultice massage, which we can highly recommend.
There is also a Tranquility Lounge which is adult-only and certainly lives up to its name with its roaring fire and cosy sofas. And when you tire of lounging you can head to the cocktail bar. You’ll be pleased to know they make a mean Espresso Martini too!
When in Cornwall, remember you can surf too! Best to stick to the summer months for non-pros. The hotel has a Surf Shack where you can treat yourself to surf lessons on the gorgeous, wide sandy beach at Mawgan Porth. The minimum age for lessons is 6 years and you can tailor your sessions to group fun or one-on-one lessons.
I loved the little hotel shop too, which sold local wares as well as stylish home accessories with a big emphasis on Orla Kiely products.
Bedruthan Steps Hotel & Spa is thought to be pioneering in the hotel world when it comes to its eco credentials, with the first solar heated outdoor pool in Cornwall. The hotel does all that it can to minimise its environmental footprint. From a genius fridge heat re-capture system using waste heat usually expelled by fridges to heat water, key card energy activation systems in bedrooms to the use of local organic produce in their restaurants and for hotel toiletries. So you can also be smug in the fact that your holidaying in a hotel that cares about its environment.
Our three night New Years Eve stay at the stylish hotel helped to completely recharge our batteries. We truly managed to switch off as parents for a couple of hours each day in the knowledge that the kids were in safe hands having fun! The friendly staff and their attention to detail make you feel instantly welcome. So welcome in fact that I didn’t want to leave. Next time we’ll be back in Summer, maybe even to experience their adult-only sister hotel The Scarlet.
Have you recently been impressed by a family-friendly hotel? I’d love to hear about it. Let me know in the comments box below.
Bedruthan Hotel and Spa | Trenance | Mawgan Porth |Cornwall |TR8 4BU
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