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“Chilled Out Stay”
Review of Masons Arms

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Masons Arms
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Branscombe
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed October 30, 2009

Stayed at the Masons for a 3 night mid week break. Our room was lovely and comfortable and nice not to see the standard boring rooms you see in so many hotels these days. The staff and owners were very friendly and more than helpful nothing was too much trouble.
Our stay varied from drinks in the bar with local chat, walks on the pebble beach or just relaxing in the residents lounge with a newspaper.
The food is faultless in Bar & Restaurant with a wide choice and a good selection of local produce.
Overall we came home relaxed and chilled .
We will return

  • Stayed: October 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank davrob1971
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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638 - 644 of 686 reviews

Reviewed October 29, 2009

Tiny room with only enough room for the bed, ridiculous sitz bath in the en-suite. Every table, every chair, every square metre of the bar areas reserved.....absolutely nowhere to sit and relax. No residents area, no lounge, no space.

Food good, service good in the busy restaurant but visibly went downhill as pressure on the kitchen increased.

Will not bother again.

  • Stayed: October 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank Kevin1955
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 4, 2009

It was OK, but didn't come up to the eulogies I've read of the place. Bedroom a bit tired, and why did the ensuite have a glass door? It poured with rain while we were there - not the hotel's fault, but given we couldn't go out, why was the sitting room locked, so we had to sit cooped up in the not-big-enough bedroom?

My main criticism though is for the pub/restaurant - basically, it doesn't seem to be able to make up its mind. If it's a pub - and they make a lot of the fact that locals use the place - then why squeeze the locals into one corner of the bar, while most of the tables in the rest of the bar have reserved signs on them, and are empty?

The restaurant section is a bit like a hospital waiting room, in terms of atmosphere. The food is well presented, but lacks character. Same with the wine list - nothing offensive, nothing adventurous.

They should either be a pub with good food, or a restaurant, but trying to be both seems to result in blandness. It lacks character - you feel it was there once and has been lost. The potential is there for someone witha bit of vision and oomph to make it a bit special.

  • Stayed: August 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Hampshirehog9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 21, 2009

We stayed at the Masons Arms in Branscombe for a few days and it was truly lovely. The room was great, the food was delicious and the staff could not have been more welcoming. We had gone there with our labrador for a walking holiday and the location could not have been better. It was easy to get to and ideally located for afternoon drives. As the village is in a steep valley all the walks starting from here are strenuous to start with but once your up there the views are fantastic. We were very luck with the weather but the pub has a fire for cold days and nights and even does pig roasts. We had the fish most meals as it could not have been any fresher. The pub also has cottages for larger parties and there were no children around which suited us. It might get busy in the holidays but locals seemed to drink there in the evenings too.

  • Stayed: September 2009, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank JFisher75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 15, 2009

Overpriced, scruffy and dirty . We arrived at 3pm on a Thursday after a long journey from London to be advised by the giggly receptionist that the bar was shut and that there was absolutely no food or drink until 7pm. (Strangely, we didn't find this quite as funny as she did, although we were delighted to hear that a meal would be available for the staff at teh earlier time of 5:30pm). We struggled (unassisted) with our luggage to our £200 per night room. The towels were unwashed and threadbare, the room was smelly and dirty and the furniture rickety. The luggage rack collapsed when we put a medium suitcase on it. By 7pm, we were ravenous and went to the retauarant to descover they hadn't reserved the table for us.
Oh Joy indeed! Sensibly, we aborted our stay and relocated pronto. AVOID!!!!

  • Stayed: September 2009, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank scarytigers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 14, 2009

We have just stayed 2 nights here. It was very last minute so we had no choice of rooms but the cottage room was quite charming and had all you needed but I understand that some of the rooms are much nicer. We had been recommended to the hotel for the location and the food and both were spot on. The village location is lovely and the local bay is very pretty (shingle) but the food is a highlight. We booked half board and ate both nights in the main restaurant. The menu is very good, lots of local produce and beautifully presented. Highlights were the scallops, mussels and local lamb and the local cheeses are worth a mention too. In the main restaurant you can also select from the bar food menu which gives you loads of choice. All in all the service was friendly and the whole package made for a very pleasant weekend.

  • Stayed: September 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank SharonAJ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 9, 2009

Nice place - stayed in a cottage room. Good size and comfy enough. Food in pub good and service fair. Nice beer!

  • Stayed: July 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank Junipers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Masons Arms

Address: Branscombe Village, Branscombe EX12 3DJ, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Devon > Branscombe
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Branscombe
Price Range: $91 - $199 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Masons Arms 4*
Number of rooms: 26
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestling in the heart of Branscombe, one of Britain's most picturesque villages, is the award winning, 14th Century, The Masons Arms. This charming thatched Inn dates back to 1350 - a cider house turned country pub - and the men who cut the stone for Exeter Cathedral drank here, hence the name. With only a leisurely ten minute stroll to Branscombe Beach, The Masons Arms offers an ideal base to escape the stresses of modern life and enjoy the magical vista of sea, beaches and the spectacular walks offered by the ninety five miles of Devon and Dorset's Jurassic Coast. The authentic interiors ooze character with timber frames, low beamed ceilings, pine cladding, whitewashed walls and a huge roaring log fire. Our award winning Restaurant offers an exciting and creative menu in relaxed fine dining surroundings. The Masons Arms kitchen brigade are dedicated to sourcing the very best of local Dartmoor produce. The cooking is classy yet simple, perfect for a special meal or relaxing Country lunch. We serve as many as six locally brewed bitters and the finest wines from around the world. The 21 bedrooms at the Masons Arms Branscombe, are cosy, stylish and inviting, blending comfort with character. The Masons Arms has been awarded a FOUR STAR rating under the Inn category by Quality in Tourism. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Masons Arms Hotel Branscombe
Masons Arms Sidmouth
Masons Arms Hotel Sidmouth
Masons Arms Branscombe, Devon, England

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