In December, we went to Bournemouth for the weekend on a press trip with Christmas Tree Wonderland and Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Council. We stayed at the four-star Hermitage Hotel Bournemouth, a sea view hotel right next to the beach. We didn’t even need to cross a road to get to the seafront. Here’s our Hermitage Hotel review, based on our hosted stay in a family room.
Hermitage Hotel Bournemouth: first impressions
We arrived at the Hermitage Hotel Bournemouth in the early evening. The entrance hall had plenty of character, with wooden revolving doors and a huge Christmas tree in the lobby, festooned with baubles and lights.
In 2019 the Hermitage Hotel Bournemouth won a TripAdvisor Award of Excellence, for its personalised service. The friendly staff at the welcome desk reflected this. They asked about our journey down from London, and quickly got us checked in to our family room, which came with one key. Our room was on the first floor and although the lift was temporarily out of order while it was going through maintenance, a staff member offered to help us upstairs with our suitcases.
Family room in the Hermitage Hotel
The en-suite guest rooms and suites at the Hermitage are furnished with flat-screen TVs, complementary Wi-Fi and kettles with a range of local Dorset teas and coffees. As guests of the tourist board, we found a special welcome pack, full of Dorset goodies, waiting for us. It included a big box of the strawberries and cream Dorset Tea that came with our room as standard. I was particularly delighted about this. The fruit tea was the scrummiest I’ve tasted, and I was glad to be able to take some home with me. Top tip: Dorset Tea and most of the other goodies you can see in the picture below are on sale at the Bournemouth Tourist Information Office, on the seafront just two minutes away from the Hermitage Hotel.
We were comfortable in our family room, which was large enough to fit three beds without feeling cramped.
Our en-suite bathroom was large, with a shower over a full-sized bath, and plenty of toiletries. My daughter was very excited to find a shower cap inside a little box. It was a big incentive for her to get up in the morning, and try it out while the water pattered on her head.
The children were pleased to discover we had Netflix as well as Freeview and terrestrial channels on our TV. That’s not something you find everywhere, and it meant that they had ready access to entertainment during our two-night stay.
Places to eat
The Hermitage Hotel served a buffet breakfast in its grand chandeliered dining room.
The buffet included pastries, yoghurt, fruit, a full English breakfast and juices. The hotel staff took our drinks order when we sat down (two hot chocolates, two coffees), and asked if we wanted them to cook something from the a la carte breakfast menu.
The Hermitage Hotel Bournemouth has two on-site restaurants. The AA-Rosette-awarded Hardy’s Restaurant serves modern British cuisine, lighter snacks and tea/coffee in a relaxed lounge. The second restaurant, NEO, offers relaxed dining options and cocktails.
Places to stay in Bournemouth: verdict on the Hermitage Hotel
For hotels near Bournemouth beach, you couldn’t fault the Hermitage. It made our Christmas trip feel very relaxed and stress-free. It was nice to be able to nip in through the hotel’s wooden revolving doors mid-afternoon, and head up to our room, so that the children could have a rest and we could all recharge our batteries. We were close enough to all the Bournemouth attractions for that to be an easy thing to do. The Hermitage Hotel Bournemouth was literally two minutes away from Christmas Tree Wonderland, in Bournemouth’s Victorian Gardens, which stretch from the town centre down to the sea. Other festive attractions, like SKATE Bournemouth and the town’s Christmas market, were just a five-minute stroll away. The pier, Smugglers Cove Adventure Golf and the Pavilion Theatre were practically right outside the hotel door, and it was just a short walk up to the Russell-Cotes Museum.
Hermitage Hotel Address: Hermitage Hotel, Exeter Road, Bournemouth, Dorset, UK BH2 5AH
Prices at the Hermitage Hotel vary, with prices starting from as low as £55 per person per night.
How to get to Bournemouth UK
We travelled to Bournemouth from London by train. Direct lines run frequently out of Waterloo station, or you can catch a connecting service. Train services from London to Bournemouth can take less than two hours. Coach services also run from London Victoria.
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