Try a Cornwall staycation at this fabulous hotel

White-walled hotel The Lugger in a fishing cove.

The Lugger is in a glorious spot close to the sea. - Credit: nicksmithphotography.com

ANDY COOPER checks into a luxury hotel nestling in a quiet Cornish cove and enjoys a peaceful and relaxing break by the sea 

Traverse the pretty lane to the quaint coastal village of Portloe and you start to feel yourself relaxing almost as you drive down the hill. It’s just about your archetypal Cornish fishing cove, right down to the lobster pots on the harbour wall and the slipway disappearing off into the beautiful blue waters in the bay. 

Find yourself checking into the wonderful hotel The Lugger when you land in the village – as I recently did – and your relaxation goes up (or is it down?) a notch. It’s a superb place in which to spend a few days relaxing and enjoying the very best that Cornwall has to offer. 

View from a Cornish hotel bedroom to the sea below.

The waves from the cove below lap up to right below your window. - Credit: nicksmithphotography.com

The Lugger was originally a 17th century inn and so has been serving grateful patrons for hundreds of years. But the latest iteration is a hotel which is bright and luxurious, blending its heritage superbly with more modern interiors. We were lucky enough to be billeted for our stay in one of The Lugger’s bedrooms across the slipway from the main hotel – a peaceful and wonderful haven where one could have relaxed all day, listening to the waves ebb and flow against the sea wall below our balcony.  

But the hotel’s remarkable proximity to the coast path makes exploration a must and 30 seconds after leaving our room we were high up on the cliff path, looking down on an empty cove as the gulls soared above our heads. One could feel our bodies sucking in the ozone and refreshing as we walked along the path. If you’re a walker, then The Lugger is the place for you – rambles head off in all directions from this fantastic base. 

Interior of a Cornish hotel bedroom.

The hotel's interiors are modern and stylish. - Credit: nicksmithphotography.com

All that walking works up an appetite though and so it was we headed back to the hotel for dinner in the restaurant, which has been garlanded with Two AA Rosette status. No surprise here for me, having dined there. Head chef Carl Williams and his team make the most of the fabulous ingredients available to them on the doorstep of The Lugger by creating a menu which mixes superb specials and classics with a twist. 

A word here for the team at the hotel, too. Service definitely comes with a smile at The Lugger. It’s clear everyone is motivated and trained well to provide the best possible stay for guests and that is clearly why it is so popular, despite its remote location. Our friends from Cornwall joined us on the second night and decided to stay, despite living only a few miles away, as who wouldn’t want to be treated so well in such glorious surroundings now and again? 

Hotel restaurant in Cornwall with tables set with white tablecloths.

The Lugger's restaurant has been garlanded with Two AA Rosette status. - Credit: nicksmithphotography.com

Sleep came very easily after such a busy day and was aided by that ubiquitous lapping of the waves outside our window. The hotel certainly makes the most of its premier location with views out across the sea from the dining room and our breakfast table view the following morning was amazing – a glorious spot from where to start the day. 

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Portloe and thus The Lugger are tucked away from it all, but that’s the whole point of enjoying a visit there. Our whole experience was cosy and comforting and we left reluctantly for home at the end of our stay, feeling thoroughly rebooted and refreshed.  

Cornish cove slipway with fishing boats on it.

The Lugger is in a wonderful location overlooking the cove at Potloe. - Credit: nicksmithphotography.com

The Lugger fact file 

The Lugger Hotel – Cornwall's only AA-rated Five Star Inn, and selected by the Sunday Times as the Best Seaside Hotel – sits right on the water’s edge in the centre of Portloe. Each of the 24 bedrooms is beautifully decorated and has deluxe showers and fine linens. 

Additionally, a range of four private cottages are available for guests desiring the utmost seclusion, space and freedom. In particular, the three-bedroom Cobb Cottage features self-catering facilities, a generous lounge, as well as breath-taking panoramic views. 

There is also a two AA Rosette restaurant on site, where guests can enjoy the best of local produce and cuisine. Many of England's most popular attractions - such as the Eden Project, the Lost Gardens of Heligan and the Maritime Museum of Falmouth - are also within easy striking distance.