REVIEW: Merchants Manor, Cornwall

Merchants Manor Hallway
Merchants Manor Hallway

This boutique hotel with views across Falmouth Bay in Cornwall, is set in a former Edwardian manor house, built for a wealthy merchant in 1913.

Merchants Manor Cornwall

Sat away from the main drag of the seafront on a gently sloping hill, Merchants Manor offers the comfort and luxury of a modern country hotel with all the fun of the seaside within easy walking distance.

The manor was built in 1913 as a grand home for the wealthy Cornish merchant George Newby Carne and still has the high ceilings and large airy rooms of a traditional Edwardian building. The hotel has been lovingly modernised in the last two years but many of the original architectural details remain.

Merchants Manor Hallway

A cosy snug built into the round bay windows of the library offers the perfect spot to enjoy a pre-dinner drink or read one of the hand-picked books – including a complete set of Daphne du Maurier books bound in pale grey leather – and large comfortable sofas are ideal for one of their signature afternoon teas in front of a real log fire in the lounge.

Merchants Manor window seat

The brasserie has earned a local following for its excellent menu of local seasonal produce cooked by the award-winning chef Dale McIntosh. The fantastic Cornish seafood is made the star of the menu with hand-dived scallops, pork-wrapped squid and halibut with chorizo and butter beans delivering on flavour. For meat lovers there are crispy croquettes filled with soft shards of pulled lamb shoulder and local Dexter beef fillet steak with double-cooked chips and even seasonal game on offer.

The attention to detail extends to the guest rooms with fresh flowers, Cornish tea, coffee and homemade shortbread biscuits laid out on a tea tray.

The twin room we stayed in had been newly refurbished in crisp ocean blues and whites with original artwork on the walls and Bauhaus-style bedside tables. There also were bathrobes hanging in the wardrobe to use around the indoor heated pool and Jacuzzi.

Through a sliding glass door from the pool there is wooden stand-alone sauna shaped like an old wooden caravan and ice-cold shower for those brave enough to use it. There is also a small but fully equipped gym next to the pool; a blessing for anyone attempting a Cornish Breakfast and an afternoon tea in the same day.

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