From the coastal path below its pretty, landscaped gardens, with children’s play areas, a giant chessboard, tennis court and outdoor pool, Polurrian on the Lizard looks dazzling.
Set atop cliffs at Mullion on the Lizard peninsula, it has spectacular Atlantic views.
In truth, I’m a touch underwhelmed as we approach the entrance, but as soon as we’re inside, the place comes to life, with children giggling, small dogs playing and couples having coffee in the light-filled lounge.
The decor is eclectic: converted waltzer seats, a crimson sofa, vintage record players, large stone urns and wooden floors. It is, as the easy-going general manager confirms, ‘a bit different from the other hotels around here’.
Indeed, Polurrian might not be for the more staid, but we feel instantly relaxed. I’d call the vibe ‘funktional’ – funky meets functional – a style encapsulated by the staff’s cool yet practical footwear: red Converse trainers.
Polurrian is perched above a lovely cove, so we amble down to the beach through the gardens. Although technically not exclusive to hotel guests, it’s not easy to access from elsewhere, so it was blissfully quiet during our stay.
Later, we devour woodfired pizzas and local Roskilly’s ice cream in the informal restaurant. Then we hit the lengthy list of rums. Polurrian’s signature cocktail, the Cornish Storm, is served in piratical skull-shaped glass and sets us up for a great night’s sleep.
The dog accompanies us to a bountiful breakfast in a delightful room off the main restaurant with froufrou feathered lights and foliage wallpaper. Just as surprising is the health club, which looks bland from the outside but contains a small but smart Elemis spa, pool, hot tub and gym.
B&B rooms cost from £119 a night at Polurrian on the Lizard in Mullion, Cornwall. For more information visit polurrianhotel.com.
The USP: Polurrian’s clifftop location, lovely sandy beach and outlook – both its glorious views and its laidback attitude – make for a great combination.
The rooms: Of the 41 rooms, our dog-friendly sea-viewer was cosy, with a window seat, comfy bed and surreal sealife Lacroix cushion. Notes about the hotel are kept in red record sleeves. The Elemis toiletries are heavenly.
The food: Great, unfussy and well judged. The Mediterranean-meets-Cornish menu includes mouthwatering fish stew. Breakfast is equally good, from clotted cream and marmalade porridge to a ‘full Cornish’. Afternoon teas are both enormous and imaginative.