There’s no better place to enjoy the British scenery than by the coast and with the British weather improving each summer, there’s even more reasons to head to the sea. Home to the world’s longest pleasure pier, Southend on Sea is a town built with fun to be had at the beach by all. And it’s no different inside the award-winning Roslin Beach Hotel. With a unique blend of seaside charm and chic luxury style, this hotel is ideal for weddings, celebrations, girly weekends and romantic getaways. I went along to the Essex hotel to check it out for herself.
Laying on the massage table at the mercy of my therapist Elda being treated to a lava shell massage, it felt like no one could possibly be within a good few hundred yards of the Roslin Retreat spa. The tranquil music in the therapy room and the soothing hands of the therapist made me forget that just along the corridor, the hotel was bustling with a wedding, christening, people enjoying afternoon tea and those propped up at the bar and terrace sipping on a drink in the bar. When my friend Sharon and I had walked into the Roslin Beach Hotel an hour earlier, I could swear the whole of Southend had descended to this abode on this Saturday afternoon.
Perched on the waterfront across the road from Thorpe beach, this boutique hotel is just an hour away from London and stands out taller and bolder than any other building along the same stretch of road. Expect to feel like you’ve escaped the city life right into the bosom of a seaside holiday destination. That’s the deliberate vibe throughout the hotel both inside out with its blend of seaside charm and luxury offerings.
The tail end of last year saw the hotel undergo a major multimillion-pound refurbishment to bring the 62 rooms and suites to another level of modern luxury and elegance, with the addition of a further three brand new bespoke bedrooms. Although we had a lovely sea view room, it’s worth paying the extra to bag a quaint balcony from where you can enjoy the outdoors without leaving the room. The calming turquoise and neutral hues work in harmony with the rooms’ handmade furniture and the ‘oh-so-inviting’ bed. There were also some retro touches in the shape of an old record player and rotary dial telephone. Sharon and I kicked back, perched ourselves on the comfy sofa with a Nespresso from the machine and indulged in a few tunes before venturing to the other parts of the hotel.
Our bathroom featured a walk-in waterfall shower with an opulent marble floor complete with Elemis spa toiletries. Some rooms have roll top bathrooms if you prefer to have a soak but with an aperitif looming ahead of dinner, the shower was just the ticket to reenergise me for the evening ahead.
The hotel is incredibly light and airy but those wanting to sit al-fresco on sunny days can make the most of the terrace. It’s a great place for a spot of people watching or simply sipping on a sundowner. Inside, the central bar linking the two AA Rosette fine-dining restaurant and the lounge was heaving as it had been in the afternoon. We learned from chatting to bar staff that the locals hang out here most weekends for a catch up ith friends over a drink or bite to eat.
But the restaurant is calmer in comparison and recently became one of only 100 restaurants to win a coveted Visit England Rose Award. Showcasing seasonal, modern menus using quality local produce, there’s ample choices to appeal to even the fussiest of eaters. And of course, there’s plenty of fish choices as is to be expected from a seaside restaurant. Both Sharon and I were bowled over the sound of Seared yellow fin tuna with avocado, radish, pickled mooli and kombu dressing d as a starter. And it didn’t disappoint. The tuna we did ask for to be cooked a tad longer than it was recommended and luckily without a fuss! It went down rather well and in a flash.
We went our separate ways with the mains though – me ordering the Norfolk chicken – slow cooked breast and leg, turnip tops, black garlic, Rosanna onion and Sharon the 40-day aged Aberdeen Angus. Both satisfied with the food, there was hardly any room for conversation until after dinner. The side of vegetables and the triple cooked chips to accompany our mains were simply divine. Once polished, conversation resumed at the bar for a night cap.
Afternoon tea at Roslin is a leisurely affair and both on the day we arrived and the day we left, it was packed with various groups of people. Eyeing up the selection of light sandwiches, the smell coming from freshly baked scones and cakes, it was tempting to book ourselves in. But there was simply no room following the huge breakfast consumed mid-morning. It will have to keep for another day when I next need a much-needed escape from city life.
Where and how?
Retreat, relax and rejuvenate at the Roslin Beach Hotel where rooms start from £109 per night, including free WiFi, parking and a discount at Roslin Retreat. Packages including breakfast start from £119. The hotel is located at Thorpe Esplanade Thorpe Bay Essex SS1 3BG. For more information visit www.roslinhotel.com or call 01702 586 375.
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