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“Evening meal - Amazing location, quite an experience” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Burgh Island Hotel

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Burgh Island Hotel
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Bigbury-on-Sea, Burgh Island TQ7 4BG, England   |  
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Burgh Island
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Cardiff, Wales
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
“Evening meal - Amazing location, quite an experience”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 20, 2013 via mobile

We went for dinner as a couple on a perfect midsummer evening, and this was a perfect place to do so.

The pickup from Bigbury on Sea was smooth and easy and throughout the evening, staff were attentive.

I'm a huge fan of Art Deco, so it was quite an experience to sit in the hotel and enjoy a cocktail before dinner. Although, as someone else has said, it's not a top class restoration, but that's being picky.

The food was very good, though not perfect. My soda bread was burnt black on the crust (I left the burnt edges and told the waitress who didn't react at all or offer more bread) and monkfish a little rubbery - but the scallops to start were superb and we enjoyed the meal overall, especially the puddings and petit fours.

There was a two-piece ensemble playing music from the 20s to 40s which befitted the surroundings, although it felt a little surreal.

The owners have clearly done a lot of work. We had previously walked to the island and noticed the hotel tennis court needed renovating. - but it has been done, and now looks in tip top condition.

Overall, an interesting and enjoyable evening - it's not a 'cool' place to be, but definitely worth going for the experience.

  • Stayed June 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OwnerBI, Owner at Burgh Island Hotel, responded to this review, July 10, 2013
Thank you for your review and it's all the more valued as you have such an great track record with TA. I really appreciate your positive comments and am a little saddened that you felt we have not done a top class restoration - I'm not sure what you were expecting of a small business, personally run, on an island in the middle of the sea. I don't mean to sound defensive but, if you understood (or had undertaken) the personal cost and input of bringing Burgh Island back to life in the last decade you would know what is possible within the bounds of an SME and not a venture capital fund. I can't put my finger on what gave you that impression but am willing to listen if you can be specific (you are kind enough to note our new tennis court). However, you are most generous in your praise for other aspects of service and style, and I whole heartedly thank you again for your post.
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705 reviews from our community

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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
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (204)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Exeter, England, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
163 reviews 163 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 42 cities Reviews in 42 cities
106 helpful votes 106 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 16, 2013

what a lovely welcome , the staff were amazing , we were picked up by land rover and then taken across by sea tractor fun fun fun , this wonderful art deco hotel has a really fantastic vintage interior, the food was really lovely and the drinks were good too, the burgh island breeze was delicious . this was a fathers day treat and there were four in our party, one in a wheel chair the relaxed atmosphere made it all the more welcoming, we sat at the captains table and the views were out of this world the day was a bit grey and the sea looked a bit choppy but at our table it was enough to simply sit and look out at it, a good time had by all and we were delivered back to our car in the four by four as the tide was out perfect end to a perfect day.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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OwnerBI, Owner at Burgh Island Hotel, responded to this review, July 10, 2013
Wow! From a senior reviewer that is especially welcome comment and thank you so much for taking time to post. I am delighted that you enjoyed your lunch with your father and the sea tractor ride, too. Again, thank you for mentioning the staff and service; I can honestly say we have never had a better team on than this summer's combination (although they get better each year with many familiar faces staying on or returning). As one of your party is a wheelchair user, I'd like to add that - despite the Grade II listing of the building - we have many less able guests and are able to accomodate wheelchair users with great pleasure and ease so please, any readers who have mobility issues just let us know and we will advise and assist.
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Epsom, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 16, 2013

On holiday in causeway apartments and for a special trip we went for lunch to Burgh Island Hotel
Everything was perfect the service the food the ambience. As the tide was in we were taken a cross by sea tractor then driven by jeep. A perfect Sunday Highly recommended.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
OwnerBI, Owner at Burgh Island Hotel, responded to this review, July 10, 2013
Thank you for your review and for joining us for Sunday Lunch, always a good way for you to see the island and for us to convince you to stay over next time (*cheeky plug*). I'm delighted that you enjoyed everything and will pass especial thanks to our wonderful staff, who are passionate about making life perfect for our guests during their stay.
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Crowthorne
Top Contributor
133 reviews 133 reviews
44 hotel reviews
Reviews in 57 cities Reviews in 57 cities
81 helpful votes 81 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 16, 2013

We have stayed here before, so were looking forward to the return trip. I think it a place for a large group to create some atmosphere and wouldn't go mid week again as a couple because it was peaceful yet a bit boring. The hotel produces some great food and the location is one of the UK's most stunning for sure, but there is much work still to be done on the hotel and certainly not worth £500 a night. Some advice on décor and quality could be an advantage because remaining sympathetic to the 1930's doesn't mean it has to be as cold in style as it is and the quality of decoration even where new is a little poor in the paint work, but I guess there's a fine line between keeping the hotel profitable versus the upkeep required is quite a balance to be struck. Service is excellent, location the best, rooms lack quality. We probably wouldn't go back but will hold Burgh Island in our hearts with fond memories.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OwnerBI, Owner at Burgh Island Hotel, responded to this review, July 10, 2013
Thank you for your review and I'm pleased that you enjoyed the food and service in our lovely location. I'm sorry you felt the hotel lacked atmosphere: many guests actively choose to come at quiet times to experience a more intimate service and indulge in their own fantasy island for their stay but it obviously did not work for you. On the decor, we try and keep original pieces around the rooms but I assure you we're not precious about and our permanent maintenance team of 3 works full time on upgrade and protection. I would hope, with all the positives you mention, we might see you again, maybe over a weekend or in high season, when the Burgh "house-party" is in full swing.
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poole
Top Contributor
103 reviews 103 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 52 cities Reviews in 52 cities
44 helpful votes 44 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 14, 2013

Our occasion was a sixtieth birthday celebration and the hotel together with its beautiful situation made it an especially memorable occasion. The view of the island and the hotel from Bigbury-on-Sea looks amazing. If the tide is in, guests and luggage are transported through the waves in a special sea-tractor, which is only one of two in the UK.
Our reception on arrival at the hotel was one of the warmest that I can remember at any hotel and really set the scene for our occasion.
As it was lunch time we went to the 'Pilchard Inn', owned by the hotel and situated by the entrance gates to the hotel. There, we were greeted by a delightful barman,who whilst rushed of his feet at this busy time of day, had time for everyone. This was a man truly multi-tasking!! The crab baguettes were fantastic and there was a good seletion of beers and wine.
The rooms and furniture all are decorated according to '1930s' tradition of' art-deco' so it is hardly surprising that ours looked a little 'tired' around the edges. The bed was very comfortable and we had a huge mirrored bathroom that had a lovely view across the bay, as indeed did our balcony.
As tradition dictates, we dressed formally for dinner along with all the other guests and after delicious canapes and cocktails were taken through into the beautifully ornate and mirrored ballroom, for dinner. Compliments must go to the chef for a truly excellent meal with good selections of vegetarian, fish or meat dishes, all of which were complemented by a good wine list.
One of the best hotel breakfasts that I have ever had was served in a large, open breakfast room with doors and windows opening onto a large patio and affording lovely views of the sea and coast.
By 11.30 am we were being taken by sea-tractor back to our car, parked under cover in the hotel parking on the main land and bid farewell by the extremely courteous and helpful drivers of the hotel transport (Sea-tractor and Range Rovers). Overall a wonderful experience.

Room Tip: Suggestion for a room with good balcony and that special bathroom; 'Fruity Metcalfe"
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OwnerBI, Owner at Burgh Island Hotel, responded to this review, July 10, 2013
Thank you for your comprehensive and very lovely review. Another "Fruity" Metcalfe fan.....this room is winning our popularity stakes this summer! I'm delighted that the whole experience lived up to scratch on all fronts, from beginning to end and it sounds as though you know how a hotel should work so that is special praise. I will pass it on to our fabulous Pilchard team and our drivers, who so often don't get a name check amongst the stars of the Ball Room and Bar but are the invaluable lynch pins of the business. On that note, Danny (our Maintenance Manager) says he thinks the Sea Tractor is truly unique, with its hydraulics and one-off steering system - Danny says beware imitations!
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Derby, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 10, 2013

Being a lover of South Devon and a regular visitor over the last few years I'd always admired the hotel from the beach, or the Pilchard Inn. Having dined there before it was my choice to book ourselves and friends into the hotel for my treat and I wasn't disappointed.
Being met in the car park and taken to the door was effortless, providing you remember to ring your arrival as you pass the golf club, and after a swift book in at reception, a quick explore of the beautiful rooms then cocktails on the terrace - perfect.
A more leisurely exploration of the rooms, our two were connected by a balcony overlooking the beach being consumed by the tide, showed all the heritage of a place like this. One room had an exquisite bathroom (as large as the bedroom) and the other a larger bedroom with a relaxing sofa and coffee table, perfect for planning our evening.
We had a wander around the island in search of the Mermaid pool, a feature that is probably best visited with swimwear when there aren't strong chilling winds!
Dressing for a dinner with music and dancing is a pleasure and makes the occasion, not a normal occurence in our local restaurants. The food was excellent, the staff attentive, and topped by a simple "Happy Birthday" written in chocolate around my cheese plate - thank you.
After a great nights sleep morning tea was taken on the sun soaked balcony (still windy though) in readiness for the excellent breakfast - the kedgeree was lovely.
We whiled away the rest of the morning enjoying the beautiful surroundings, the snooker room and a little of the TT in the TV room.
Only a one night stay but a great one to remember.
Thanks to all.

Room Tip: Rooms facing Bigbury beach don't see much sun during the day.
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  • Stayed June 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OwnerBI, Owner at Burgh Island Hotel, responded to this review, July 10, 2013
Thank you for your review and I am delighted that we were able to provide a suitable backdrop to your birthday celebrations. It all sounds quite Noel Coward, with adjoining balconies (I surmise you were in "Fruity" and Chirgwin?). Few guests celebrating birthdays escape Timmy's now-famous "birthday plate" and we do like to note significant celebrations so any future guests reading this please don't hesitate to tell us if your stay spans any significant dates! A challenge for your next visit - a dip in The Mermaid Pool! It's not as bracing as it looks, especially towards the end of the summer......
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Windsor, United Kingdom
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 9, 2013

We've just returned from a super weekend at this quintessential English hotel. Everything was 'en point' the staff, Nick , Gary , Hugh, Vlad and Mircat ( I think that is how to spell is sorry) and Lena all looked after us so well. And allowed us to celebrate a 60th birthday in style.

I recommend the cocktails especially Mermaids Kiss.

We just stayed around the hotel soaking up the atmosphere - we did venture across the sand and back and had a pint in the Pilchard inn.

Food was fantastic and served in style we also loved the breakfast - what a choice. You might think that the room prices are steep but you know what it keeps this place exclusive and actually room rates include bed, breakfast and evening meal for two so once you break costs down they are on par with similar hotels. We will definitely be back.

Thoroughly recommend this super hotel

Room Tip: Ask for a sea view ours was not the most expensive but had the best view. ( Fruity Metcalf). Don...
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OwnerBI, Owner at Burgh Island Hotel, responded to this review, July 10, 2013
Thank you for your generous review and kind name check of staff - it will be passed on (although "Meerkat" is something of a nickname for the lovely Mirka, lucky you didn't catch some of the nicknames for the other staff!). "Fruity" Metcalfe, after a lifetime of following Edward VIII around, picking up the bills and the cast off socialites, has found his immortality at Burgh and has, indeed, the most wonderful original Deco pink bathroom - it's lovely to have him appreciated at last!
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Additional Information about Burgh Island Hotel

Address: Bigbury-on-Sea, Burgh Island TQ7 4BG, England
Phone Number:
Location: United Kingdom > England > Devon > Burgh Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Spa Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Burgh Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Number of rooms: 13
Also Known As:
Burgh Hotel Island
Burgh Island Hotel Devon

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