The Good Hotel Guide recently released it’s 2020 edition of independently reviewed hotels, inns and B&Bs across the UK. Most notably in each category are the special mentions given to the Editor’s Choice destinations, and here they share their best pubs-with-rooms from this year’s Editor’s Choice selection, from seaside fishermen’s haunts to historic coaching inns…
The Rose and Crown, Barnard Castle
A picturesque country escape, The Rose and Crown at Barnard Castle sits beside a Saxon church, while inside many of its original features such as a log fire and flagged floors remain intact. It’s the attention to detail at this 18th century coaching inn that makes it feel such a treat – Molton Brown toiletries and mineral water in environmentally mindful reusable glass bottles for example. However, over and above everything else, it’s the food that keeps people coming back time and again – it’s seasonal, local and beautifully prepared.
The Rose and Crown, Snettisham
This 14th century pub-with-rooms is just a short distance from the sea and combines a sense of history with sympathetically modern rooms and decor. Sympathetically welcoming, there are little touches of humour scattered about as well, which add to the homely atmosphere. Since last year, they have welcomed a new chef, and the food has gone from strength to strength, offering a traditional fish and chips, alongside more ambitious options.
The Sun Inn, Colchester
Close to the River Stour, The Sun Inn is an unmissable butter yellow inn on the Essex-Suffolk border, formed of a 15th-century building complete with an Elizabethan staircase, timber framing and combined with contemporary decor. Its rooms are all comfy pillows and cosy rugs to make you feel wonderfully welcome. Meanwhile, food is best described as modern English pub food with an Italian twist.
The Inn at Whitewell, Clitheroe
Old fashioned in all the best ways, and a little eccentric as well, The Inn at Whitewell is a beautiful old inn on the banks of the River Hodder. Larger than your average pub-with-rooms with 23 bedrooms, there’s a distinct elegance to it along with cosy details such as blazing fires, antiques, paintings and each room has something unique all of its own. There’s a four-poster bed in one, a peat fire in another, a grandfather clock and a Victorian cabinet bath – to name a few. Hearty meals are served from local ingredients wherever possible, and they are particularly well known for their Whitewell fish pie.
The Black Swan, Kirkby Stephen
Peace and tranquillity reign at The Black Swan, a superbly elegant Victorian pub-with-rooms in an Eden valley conservation village. Offering a variety of inventive and creative accommodation that ranges from glamping tents to a four-poster suite, some cottage style rooms and some more modern ones, the attention to detail remains the same. Guests arrive to fresh milk and organic toiletries, and the option to relax in a choice of lounges, bars, or in he riverside garden when the weather permits.
The Felin Fach Griffin, Brecon
A truly relaxed vibes permeates The Felin Fach Griffin, a remote inn looking out onto beautiful mountain and river views and where there’s no such thing as a television – here you make do with good company and a good book. The style is shabby-chic across the variety of dining areas, and rooms welcome you with ground coffee, fresh milk, shortbread, fresh flowers and Bramley toiletries. There’s a generally homely atmosphere which is only enhanced by the use of home-grown fruit and vegetables in the food that they serve and a very personal approach.
The Red Lion Freehouse, East Chisenbury
On the banks of the River Avon, The Red Lion Freehouse is a warm and welcoming village pub run by Michelin-starred chef/proprietors. Stylishly designed, but in keeping with the building itself, food is all hearty modern British dishes in the evening and home-made muffins and jams at breakfast. Meanwhile, contemporary rooms are in the Troutbeck Guesthouse across the road. Each room has a name and little details that define it, and they have private wooden decks with river views to wake up to.
The Cricket Inn, Kingsbridge
This charming Victorian fishermen’s inn overlooking Start Bay in the picturesque South Hams, The Cricket Inn is a charming, relaxed and quiet escape, where boats bob by and the nautical theme is carried through to the bedrooms with a little touch of New England style. Each room is named after a cricket ground and some have panoramic sea views. Music plays in the bar where, it is said, pre-Rolling Stones, Keith Richards and Mick Jagger performed their first public gig. Meanwhile, food is a celebration of Devon produce and sets you up nicely for exploring the South West Coast Path, local beaches or regional attractions.
The Greyhound Inn, Wantage
At this 18-century country pub, guests are greeted by clean and light decor featuring white walls and colourful cushions and throws, as well as a charming beer garden. At the heart of a pretty and vibrant village, in the pub area, The Greyhound Inn is leather club chairs around brick fireplaces, while food brings together quintessentially local ingredients in imaginative ways with items like pickled blackberries featuring on the menu.
The Wellington Arms, Baughurst
A country inn on the Hampshire/ Berkshire border, The Wellington Arms fuses a traditional building with contemporary style. Its four rooms bring together exposed brick with elegant white linens in simple and relaxing style. Meanwhile, food embraces a combination of local ingredients (their own jam, their own eggs), in contemporary favourite dishes as well as a twist on pub classics from breakfast through until dinner.