Cliff House Hotel
OK, so it's not exactly on the cliffs, but we can forgive Cliff House Hotel this minor lapse as this is what Bournemouth's up-and-coming suburb of Southbourne has been crying out for – a boutiquey bolt hole which is, after all, barely a minute's walk from the excellent local beach. We were very impressed by the stylish bar and leafy garden of this characterful Victorian building whose previous incarnations have been a boys' school and a Salvation Army guest house. Small and intimate (there are just 14 rooms), this is still very much work in progress: some rooms are all style and modern flair, others are more traditional. But all are a good size, and the downstairs ones overlook the gardens. Proprietor Andrew Gosling is also the face behind a London catering company, FoodShow, and has plans for an in-house restaurant. For now, food consists of excellent breakfasts and a decent bar menu.
Double rooms from £135 a night.
Open all year.
Cliff House Hotel, 13 Belle Vue Road Bournemouth Dorset BH6 3DA
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