We all have that one place that we’ve always dreamed of staying. For some it may be The Ritz, for others it may be a VW Campervan but for me, it was definitely Artist Residence Brighton.
I’d seen blog post after blog post of incredible photos and frankly amazing write-ups of this 23-bedroom townhouse hotel, and over the past couple of years, my curiosity had grown.
So after a particularly tough start to the week in the office, I decided that was it. I booked myself in for a mid-week stay in the dreamiest of all boutique hotels…
Upon arriving at *that* front door, I could feel a smile spreading across my face – the kind of smile that you get when you know you’re about to live out one of your dreams. With the iconic pink neon sign staring back at me, I knew I was in the right place.
As soon as I stepped through the front door I could immediately feel the lively yet casual vibe from within the hotel. The decor was unique and eclectic, just as I’d seen in all those photos – it was in no way letting me down so far. In fact, it felt as though I was being welcomed into a friend’s home. I was greeted warmly by all staff members who gladly handed over my key for the night and let me get settled in.
Walking through the corridors and up the stairs to find my room (there is a lift), it felt like I was in a maze but one that I wanted to get lost in. The kind of maze you’d expect in Alice in Wonderland, with odd-looking paintings on every wall and tiny details, like little hand-painted hands showing you which way to go. The creaking of every footstep as I walked through the townhouse wasn’t in any way alarming, more comforting – I knew I was in a historic building that had its own story to tell.
I was staying in a Tiny Sea View room for the night but there were plenty more choices available when I came to book. Although the smallest of all the rooms in the hotel, I couldn’t have been happier.
You know when you make a den as a kid in your living room and you feel all safe and content – this is the atmosphere I got from my room. Not only that, it had original hand-painted walls, adorable furniture and fabulous sea views (if the fog hadn’t been so thick you couldn’t see a damn thing!).
There was everything I needed in this little space of mine – a comfy bed with oodles of soft sheets and duvet, free WiFi, a TV with Freeview, a Roberts radio (which was playing smooth jazz upon arrival – what a welcome) and a fully-stocked mini bar.
What’s more, there was tea or coffee and Caramel biscuits waiting upon arrival. Needless to say, I scoffed these. Definitely the best welcome treat I’ve had to date in a hotel.
Feeling a tad hungry and really tired, I’m not going to lie, I ordered Deliveroo to the room (I can’t get it back home) and got myself a delicious pizza from PizzaFace Brighton. It was one of those evenings where you just want to flick on Come Dine With Me and munch on some tasty food in between the sheets. And that’s exactly what I did. I could not have been happier.
If you’re not like me, and enjoy eating out, then you can try the hotel’s acclaimed The Set Restaurant, an in-house delight with ever-changing seasonal tasting menus by chefs Dan Kenny and Semone Bonner.
The Cocktail Shack
I did, however, venture down to The Cocktail Shack for a cheeky nightcap. Honestly, I was blown away by the extensive list of inventive cocktails on offer, I mean, just look at this wall. It had a charming yet tropical vibe to it, the kind of neighbourhood spot where locals come to have a quiet bevvy mid-week.
Now, who doesn’t love a menu full of puns?! In which case, The Cocktail Shack has you covered. I opted for ‘Cast-a-wray’ but next time, I’ll be having a ‘Charlie + The Cocktail Factory’. I’m a rum or vodka girl at heart. My drink was perfection – fruity and strong – just what you need before turning in for the night.
If you fancy something a little more secretive with your stay, you could always opt to go to The Curious Mr Hanbury, tucked away beneath the hotel itself. Expect curious cocktails concocted to your every taste made especially for you by apprentices of The Connor Brothers. I will definitely be paying this bar a visit on my next stay.
The Set Cafe
After an incredible nights sleep, I felt wholly refreshed.
In fact, I didn’t want to leave. I checked through my phone notifications with the radio on in the background playing soft swing music. It was one of the most pleasant mornings I’d had in a long time.
After a warm shower, I headed down for breakfast at The Set Cafe – an experience I was really looking forward to, having seen what was on offer. The vibe was just as relaxed as my morning had been. I was immediately offered a seat, a menu and a smile – just what you want first thing in the morning. I very much enjoyed my time here, fuelling up before heading to work for the day.
I savoured my favourites – soya latte and vanilla pancakes with berries atop. Both were divine and made for the best start to my day. The coffee kept me going until lunchtime, which in my book, makes for a good cuppa. It also tasted smooth and wonderfully crafted too – not a splash of burnt soya in sight. The pancakes were also the best I’ve had to date – and that includes my holidays to America. The blend of spices in each mouthful really set the dish off, especially when combined with the zing of the berries. You’d usually have cream with it but I’m lacto-free.
Overall, my stay at Artist Residence Brighton did not disappoint. It was everything I wanted – friendly staff, cosy room, coupled with delicious food and drinks. The only thing I would do second time around would be to opt for a larger room, to see what they’re like and dine at The Set Restaurant because the food looked incredible.
My stay and breakfast were sponsored by Artist Residence Brighton but all words and opinions are my own.