A cool Cornish hotel – without the crowds
Love Cornwall, but a bit flummoxed where exactly to head this summer? Ooh, ooh, I can help! One of my favourite hotels down in the exotic South West corner of England has just relaunched after a stylish redesign and it looks amazing.
Polurrian on the Lizard (previously Polurrian Bay Hotel) sits in a glorious position on the Lizard peninsula, in the south west of the county, with 41 bedrooms, ocean views and its own lovely beach accessed by a stairway directly from the hotel.
Check out my kids on the beach here in late 2014 (above) – my abiding memory of the day being that both younger children walked straight into the sea, and the waves lapped over their welly boots and soaked their feet in seconds (yeah yeah, bad mothering, what’s new?!).
We spent the next few hours drying their socks on the rocks but it didn’t matter – it was such a lovely spot and time stood still for a little. Bliss, basically, and it’s no exaggeration to say that Polurrian was one of my favourite UK breaks that year. My children absolutely adored the freedom of zipping around in safety around the hotel, which felt very homely and relaxed, and of course we loved the babysitting service, G&Ts, the 30ft indoor swimming pool and floor-t0-ceiling windows that swept across the main lounge – just check this for a sundowner vista! You can just about make out the tennis court and to the left of that you’ll find the outdoor pool.
Cut to 2019 and the modern new Polurrian 2.0 still has its relaxed vibe – you feel quite at ease to spread out on the sofas with a paper, and I’m still a fan of the stupendous views from the lounge, below.
But the hotel’s been significantly zsushed up since my last visit with a natty new bar area, below, revamped spa, cosy snug and a restaurant that now boasts one of those funky Gozney pizza ovens.
Perhaps one of the biggest improvements is the four stunning new villas with underfloor heating, designer furniture and more of those views (below) that offer a great half-way house – all the hotel amenities, including tennis courts, Elemis spa treatments, and indoor and outdoor pools, but in your own space.
Most significantly since my time, the appeal of the Polurrian has expanded. No longer so strongly focused on younger families (though little ones will still love it) the separate children’s teas and rigid timings have been replaced by a more relaxed, inclusive approach to family dining – think sharing platters, tapas and wood-fired pizzas.
And there’s been a determined effort to accommodate older children properly, because let’s face it, where the under-fives roam there’s probably a bored older sibling or two desperate not to watch In The Night Garden again. So now options for older children and adults include beach survival skills, wild swimming, kayaking, coasteering, paddle boarding and – very millennial – rock pooling for conservation.
No kids in tow? I think the new up-styling of the hotel will appeal to you too – the villas in particular are screaming out for groups of friends or romantic couples.
And Cornwall just sells itself, right? Post-Poldark, the county can feel overrun with Aidan Turner hunters, but perhaps because of its southerly position, the Lizard Peninsula is still a largely hidden gem, and has escaped being overrun by tourists. I’d recommend heading to Lizard Point, just a couple of miles down the road and the most southerly tip of the UK, where you can do a fantastic coastal walk (end up at the Lizard Point café – pasty perfection).
The National Trust Mullion Harbour is only a mile way, and the white sands of Kynance Cove, above, and the lovely villages of Coverack, Cadgwith, Constantine and Porthleven are within easy distance. Penzance, Pendennis Castle and St Ives and Falmouth can be reached within the hour.
Polurrian on the Lizard, Polurrian Road, Mullion, Cornwall, TR12 7EN. Tel: 01326 240421.
Sounds like your kind of place? You’d better read on then because you can…
**WIN A £1800 3-night stay for 6 at Polurrian on the Lizard!**
One lucky Muddy reader will win a 3-night stay at Polurrian at the Lizard for six, courtesy of moi. Yeah I know, I’m so good to you.
Choose from three rooms in the main hotel, or one of the stylish new three-bedroom villas, PLUS you’ll receive a two-course dinner for six on one evening AND three 30 minute spa treatments. The prize is valid for redemption until 30 June 2020 excluding school holidays and bank holiday weekends.