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“Seal Watching” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Cary Arms

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Cary Arms
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5.0 of 5 Inn   |   Babbacombe Beach | Babbacombe Near, Torquay TQ1 3LX, England   |  
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Spring Gastro Getaway
Ranked #48 of 154 Torquay B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Lichfield, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
94 helpful votes 94 helpful votes
“Seal Watching”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 13, 2013

We stayed at the Cary Arms on a doggy break last week and thoroughly enjoyed it. The setting was lovely and it was great to see a seal down by the pier being fed fish by some children, alas we missed the dolphins. The food was good, though not amazing, I would have expected a more interesting menu for the price and its got to be said the breakfast coffee wasn't brilliant. The staff were very pleasant and polite and the rooms clean and spacious.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BellHotel, General Manager at Cary Arms, responded to this review, June 25, 2013
Dear 'Lizzieboo186376'

Thank you on behalf of the de Savary family for your review, I will share your comments with all my team. Sammy the Seal comes along most days, the dolphins unfortunately are not quite as routine! I hope they will be around on your next visit.

Many thanks

Matt Collins
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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527 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (162)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Norwegian first
  • Any
English first
Fleet, United Kingdom
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 2, 2013

Have had a wonderful 2 nights stay at the Cary Arms in the Admiral room.
Sloe gin, fudge, fruit cake and rock really hit the spot so many thanks for catering both to our sweet tooth and supplying a nightcap tipple - both much appreciated and consumed.

We were very impressed with the enthusiasm, friendliness and experience of all members of staff, who were particularly gracious with me and my oxygen suitcase! The restaurant was as we had hoped after reading the reviews and we were not disappointed either at breakfast or dinner.

We were extremely lucky to watch during our breakfast a seal eating it's breakfast in the bay.
On returning to the room for coffee on our 'patio' we could not believe our luck as a pod of about 6 or 7 dolphins played their way across the bay. Magical moments.

Loved the open outside space the room and lying in bed in the morning having a cup of tea with the curtains open its appears that the sea is your very own infinity pool .

Bath with a spectacular view but I did miss a shower, only glitch and that is minor.

Thanks for a memorable stay, not sure about the hill but will tackle it again as we will return.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CaryArms, General Manager at Cary Arms, responded to this review, June 11, 2013
Dear ‘611Bosslady’

What a lovely review I am so pleased you enjoyed your short break with us. We are blessed with our location for viewing dolphins, seals and even the odd basking shark.

It was really nice to meet you both and I look forward to welcoming you back in the near future.

Many thanks

Matt Collins
General Manager
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Stockport, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 20, 2013

We recently stayed in the Fleet Admiral room for a short break and was pleased to find that the hotel is everything the brochure shows and so much more. The food was lovely and the staff very friendly. All in all the perfect peaceful break we were after and in an amazing location. Hoping to go back same time next year.

Room Tip: The Fleet Admiral rooms have a private roof terrace and the best views
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CaryArms, General Manager at Cary Arms, responded to this review, June 11, 2013
Dear ‘alethia t’

Thank you on behalf of the de Savary family for such a lovely review. I look forward to welcoming you back next year, remember as a returning guest we offer a 10% discount here or at our sister property The Old Swan & Minster Mill.

Many thanks

Matt Collins
General Manager
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Torquay, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 18, 2013

Sat on the terrce here on a sunny Friday afternoon enjoying the magnificent view of the bay. Although we got here at 3pm, kitchen closing time until dinner, the team were very obliging and took our order. We had what we rate to be the best crab sandwich ever. Came on very fresh granary bed, with a crisp salad and some moreish chips, all for £10.00. We had a bottle of cold Chilian Sauvignon Blanc £19 and very palatable it was too. The service was professional and friendly, couldn't fault it at all. The Cary comes highly reommended for a great lunch out on the their terrace. We tried to book a table for dinner but they were fully booked.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CaryArms, General Manager at Cary Arms, responded to this review, June 11, 2013
Dear ‘JPB63’

Thank you so much for coming down to see us for lunch, whether it is bright Sunshine or the waves crashing you are sure to receive a warm welcome from our Team. I must admit to enjoying the odd Crab Sandwich for my lunch. Perhaps next time give us a call so we can book you on ‘Captains Table’ lunch or Dinner now the evenings are bright and warm.

Many thanks

Matt Collins
General Manager
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London
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 15, 2013

This is a true boutique bolthole ! It oozes old english coastal charm and I often feel very Famous Five along the cliff walks.Rooms are beautifully decorated and the bar/restaurant offer great gastro fayre and beverages. The special little touches like Sloe Gin in the rooms is great. The team running the Cary Arms are hospitable, but allow guest privacy, nothing is ever too much for them. The views are fabulous and waking up here is special. On a summers morning relaxing with the paper whilst eating breakfast outside perched on the cliffs above the sea is a real soul fulfilling moment. perfectly located for Devon and Cornwall, this is the perfect getaway treat ....dont hesitate just remind yourself you deserve it !

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CaryArms, General Manager at Cary Arms, responded to this review, June 11, 2013
Dear ‘bearisimo’

Wow, thank you so much for your lovely review we are all so pleased you enjoyed your stay with us and look forward to welcoming you back to our idyllic location.

Many thanks

Matt
General Manager
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London, England, United Kingdom
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 13, 2013

a return trip for the 6 of us , who have variously and independently eaten and stayed here on a number of occasions over the past 2 years.

A disappointing time in the restaurant with slow service, lackluster food.
The sparkle seems to have gone, and in it's place is something a lot less ebullient.

Babbacome however retains all of it's charm, and The Cary remains a good place for a beer, post; walk, fishing, dolphin/seal watching or hardy swim..

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CaryArms, General Manager at Cary Arms, responded to this review, May 14, 2013
Dear ‘SimonT’

Thank you for taking the time to write a review. On behalf of Lana de Savary please accept our apologies for the disappointment received on your most recent visit to our Inn.

Please rest assured this is not our normal high level of food or service as can be read in our most recent reviews. I have shared your comments with my service team who are all equally disappointed, we will all continue to work hard to develop all aspects of our dining experience, to ensure all our guests have an enjoyable lunch or dinner with us.

If you would like to discuss the matter further I have sent you my contact details. When you are next planning on coming back to the area please contact me direct to see if I can help with overnight accommodation and apologise in person.

Many thanks

Matt Collins
General Manager
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London, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
73 reviews 73 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
51 helpful votes 51 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 9, 2013

A couple of things first-time visitors need to know about the Cary Arms: it’s a great gastro-pub, and it’s also an inn that is working with and amid the challenges of its tightly packed location and frontage on a popular public beach.

The property lies at the base of Babbacombe Beach, which you reach after travelling down a hair-raising 30-degree winding road that spits you out among a cluster of buildings--the pub, the inn and a few self-catering “cottages.” The road continues farther down to a public beach and parking lot that by day (starting quite early) fills up with boisterous local visitors looking for water access, fishing and outdoors recreation. This public “situs” means that the Cary Arm is never really private (nor does it intend to be), and is it rarely quiet until the late hours after the pub has closed and the parking lot has emptied.

Once you know what to expect, you are better able to adjust and enjoy the property
The Inn has a “residents lounge” that is very comfortable, and a separate patio that mitigates some of the feeling that you have to share the place with absolutely everyone who careens down the roadway.

A word about the pub and the staff: the gastro-pub is the Cary Arms’ star attraction along with a staff that knocks themselves out to be helpful and accommodating: the food is outstanding, with daily specials. The outdoor terraces that cascade down the hillside (overlooking Babbacombe Bay, the pier and beach) are pleasant and brimming with local and resident diners. The entire staff do everything within their power to make you comfortable.

If you are in a flexible frame of mind, the Cary Arms will reward you with relaxation. One last thing: the Cary Arms is dog friendly, which is wonderful. Dogs+beach+water+patios+good food=lots of wagging tails and happy people.

Room Tip: The Inn has eight rooms, two of which are dog friendly: they go quickly. Two of the self-catering c...
See more room tips
  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CaryArms, General Manager at Cary Arms, responded to this review, May 14, 2013
Dear ‘Muguet2’

Thank you so much for such a lovely review, I’m so pleased you enjoyed your stay with us, I have shared your comments with all of the team.

I glad you enjoyed all aspects of your stay including the saloon and residents terrace. Perhaps next time come and have dinner in our glass Pod, relax in a deckchair or snooze in our hammock on our grass areas looking right out to sea.

I look forward to welcoming you back, remember as a returning guest you are entitled to a 10% discount.

Matt Collins
General Manager
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Additional Information about Cary Arms

Address: Babbacombe Beach | Babbacombe Near, Torquay TQ1 3LX, England
Phone Number:
Location: United Kingdom > England > Devon > English Riviera > Torquay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Spa Suites Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #48 of 154 B&Bs / Inns in Torquay
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Cary Arms 5*
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Chic, boutique inn by the de Savary Family in the unrivalled location of Babbacombe Bay. 8 Contemporary, New-England style bedrooms with outstanding sea-views & 4 restored fisherman's cottages for rental. The very best of creative, seaside gastro-inn dining focusing on local, seasonal ingredients in an informal and relaxed setting. Great for families & dog friendly. Hearty breakfasts, long lunches and lazy suppers indoors or out on the sun-terraces. Sheltering in its own un-sung part of the South Devon Coast, the English Riviera, the inn is accessible by water and has its own moorings. Spa treatments & massage available. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
The Cary Arms Hotel Torquay
Cary Arms Torquay, Devon

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