We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Hoping for better .....”
Review of The Idle Rocks

Best prices for -
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 9 more sites!
The Idle Rocks
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in St Mawes
Certificate of Excellence
Solihull
Level Contributor
9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Hoping for better .....”
Reviewed October 4, 2013

Hardly ever dined in the old Idle Rocks ... couldn't stand the carpet. We had high hopes of the smartly refurbished new one, and indeed it is a huge improvement. Their top attribute remains the divine location, literally at water's edge, and unbeatable in St. Mawes. However, they have a long, long way to go before reaching the standards of The Tresanton. Our waitress was sweet but embarrassed when we chose "Small bites" .... "They are very, very small" ... she warned. So I chose Idle Rocks Salad (£10). "Would you like chips or new potatoes?" Strange with salad, I thought, but I chose new potatoes, which turned out to be £4 extra. I thought the signature salad must be good ... but it was just designer lettuce, a tiny bit of pickled vegetables, and some weeny shavings of goat's curd. Pathetic. The attitude seems to be "How little can we give?" instead of "How can we please our guests?" I would have happily paid more for something good.
Management should take a leaf out of The Tresanton book; they are professionals and show true generousity of spirit, concern for the happiness of the guest, and expert friendly service. It takes more than a sleek decor to win customer loyalty.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
10 Thank Jennifer H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

375 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    281
    58
    17
    12
    7
See reviews for
61
251
4
1
Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (116)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
shaftesbury
Level Contributor
11 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed October 3, 2013

I was staying at The Tresanton (wonderful) last week and visited the Idle Rocks twice. I can't make it out at all other than that it is clearly aimed at the upmarket trendy crowd who visit Rock and Padstow in high summer and holidays and then mostly stay away from Cornwall for the rest of the year. I hope they have analysed the target market correctly.

The refurbished terrace is magnificent and stylishly done and so is the small sitting room. I found the Bar/Restaurant a bit of a mish mash. Sort of minimalism meets cottage garden, but to be fair it is a huge improvement on the old decor and the furnishings are quality. But the effect is strangely cold, not helped by the fact that there were very few people about. Two or three tables dining (wildly expensive menu with not a lot of choice) and two drinkers. Despite this, the solitary bar man was elusive and much more interested in the fact that he was leaving for University the next day. I couldn't help noticing that his trendy hessian apron was completely filthy. Horrible. I had a glass of wine on the terrace and later asked for another. Despite my being the only person there, he couldn't remember what I'd had. Nice enough chap but not good enough to put in charge of the bar in a brand new hotel.

The next night there was another bar man who was much more professional and an extremely nice lady who was also organising the restaurant. Despite it being a cold night I enjoyed sitting on the terrace looking out over the water and enjoying the warmth of the flares they have installed. Would willingly repeat this visit but don't think I'd want to stay there until they get their service under control. The place is not cheap and you expect Tresanton standards at that price. I wonder why they didn't go for a more reasonable tariff just to get the place established.

Footnote: On my way out asked for a brochure and tariff of young lady engrossed with her computer (this is SO not the right thing). She looked at me as if I'd asked for an elephant and said 'I don't they THEY are going to do one but we have a postcard. I didn't find out who THEY were but she did tell me that from November they are changing over to a dinner, bed and breakfast rate that was about £350 which I thought was extortionate for off season. She also implied that there would be no choice which I think is a mistake because a lot of people who come to this part of Cornwall like to eat in different places.

I don't know who is running this place but to me it seemed that too much effort had gone into creating a trendy environment, assuming that this would be enough. It isn't. They need to analyse their target market, pitch the rates accordingly and get their service sorted. Pronto.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
12 Thank penny s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Truro, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
106 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 225 helpful votes
Reviewed October 1, 2013

So, we live locally, and having finished our luncheon elsewhere, I thought while we were over in St. Mawes, let's pop in and get some information on the newly refurbished Idle Rocks. The re fit looks fantastic, although I only got a glimpse from the front of the entrance / reception.
On entering, the lady behind the desk, hidden behind a Mac, stayed seated and glanced up, I sort of expected a bit more than 'glance' so asked more to break the ice, do you have a brochure? A quickly well spoken put down came back, " oh I don't think we will do those" ...still seated, and glancing by now back to the Mac, I replied, sorry , just thought it might be a good place for a conference? ( didn't really know what to say as clearly realised I was not wanted there) back came the reply...Oh, I don't think we would want to do those.
And that was that, not a word more, other than busy with The Mac.

Point of the review? Well, I was made to feel stupid, not sure why, but, we won't dine there or stay.
Out of interest, I have never been made to feel like that at Gidleigh ,Tresanton , Nathan Outlawes,
Le manoir, or even in London at Jason Athertons, ......
If this had been my new hotel, which is emptyish, I would have got up and said something like.....can I show you what we have done? Doesn't take a genius really.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Location
    • Service
Helpful?
34 Thank Pommepuree
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Level Contributor
113 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
Reviewed October 1, 2013

My wife and I stopped over in St Mawes en route south. We've stayed in St Mawes before and rather daringly decided to try somewhere new.
Idle Rocks must be the discovery of all romantic Cornish hotels.
Beautifully finished throughout with a perfect location right on the rocks. The rooms/beds are super comfortable and the "dernier mot" in luxury must be the auto guide light for the loo. Try the local sparkling wine, it's a very good aperitif. Local catch for dinner is a must.
Proper kippers were available for breakfast, served timely with a ready smile.
What a great start for the rest of the day.
We will certainly return!

Room Tip: Always try for the seaview rooms, the sound of the lapping tide is very soporific.
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank John W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level Contributor
9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed September 30, 2013

I agree with David C (19 September). Fabulous hotel, wonderful rooms and an amazing setting but the service is very basic and amateurish; it is almost like Fawlty Towers. This hotel could really be a knock-out however it sounds like (since our stay at the end of August) the promised change of staff has not happened. I am sure it will get ironed out eventually. Good luck Idle Rocks, but unfortunately at the moment you just don't make the cut.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank SmallUbie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
185 reviews
33 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 89 helpful votes
Reviewed September 27, 2013

The Idle Rocks had me won over from the moment I stepped into reception. Beautifully set out with its nautical theme, the recent nine-month transformation (this was less of a refurbishment - more of a rebuild!) has clearly been a labour of love.

I had the chance to view most of the 20 rooms currently available (there are four more nearing completion in the adjacent cottage) and the attention to detail is phenomenal. The new owners have put their extensive experience of staying in hotels globally to good use...

There is little more guaranteed to send you off too a gentle sleep - or to ease you back into the new day - than the sound of waves gently lapping against the shore and as most rooms overlook the water this is truly a place where you can escape from stress.

Children are welcome - there's a lovely playroom for the little terrors! - and one of the cottages is set up as dog-friendly too.

Sadly my stay was only for one night and next time I'll have to be sure to book in for the hotel's Sunday brunch which promises to be more of an informal house-guest party.

I understand that the old Idle Rocks had come to the end of a long and tiring life. The new version looks ready to set fresh standards for St Mawes for a very long time to come.

Room Tip: Most rooms face the water but those that don't have been given extra space to compensate. You wo...
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Rallyman23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Solihull, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
26 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed September 25, 2013

Hotel has been refurbished beautifully, which compliments its outstanding position on the waters edge. Enjoyed a wonderful couple of nights here at beginning of September. Food/wine very good too. Loved it and hope to return.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank zeebird
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Also consider these accommodations in or near St Mawes
0.3 mi away
Hotel Tresanton
Hotel Tresanton
#2 of 5 in St Mawes
610 reviews
0.1 mi away
The St Mawes Hotel
The St Mawes Hotel
#3 of 5 in St Mawes
176 reviews
3.1 mi away
Driftwood Hotel
Driftwood Hotel
#1 of 2 in Trewithian
473 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
2.7 mi away
The Greenbank Hotel
The Greenbank Hotel
#2 of 23 in Falmouth
1,083 reviews
2.2 mi away
The Oceanic Hotel
The Oceanic Hotel
#1 of 23 in Falmouth
166 reviews
6.8 mi away
The Lugger Hotel
The Lugger Hotel
#1 of 1 in Portloe
872 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to The Idle Rocks? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about The Idle Rocks

Property: The Idle Rocks
Address: Harbourside, St Mawes TR2 5AN, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Cornwall > Truro District > Roseland Peninsula > St Mawes
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in St Mawes
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — The Idle Rocks 3.5*
Number of rooms: 19
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Idle Rocks has the most enviable location in St Mawes, overlooking the harbour with views across the River Fal to Falmouth. Our 19 bedrooms, most with stunning vistas over the bay, have been thoughtfully designed, each having their own unique identity with fabulous fabrics and decor that leave you in no doubt that you are by the sea. After a long day lazing on the beach, our south facing terrace is the perfect place to relax, have a long drink, and watch the world go by. You may even see your dinner being landed on the harbourside.The Idle Rock's restaurant, run by our head chef, Guy Owen, is a celebration of Cornwall; showcasing a range of fabulous produce that has been sourced locally using only seasonal fresh ingredients. In many cases it will have been swimming right on our doorstep only a few hours earlier and while the food is of the very highest standard our setting is very relaxed. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Hotels.com, Booking.com, Expedia, Orbitz, Travelocity, TripOnline SA, Cheap Tickets, Cancelon, Priceline, Agoda and LateRooms so you can book your The Idle Rocks reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Idle Rocks Hotel
Idle Rocks St Mawes
The Idle Rocks St Mawes, Cornwall

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing