Hotel Review: Cary Arms & Spa, Devon
A delightful small hotel close to bustling Torquay but tucked away on one of the quietest, least spoilt bays on the English Riviera. There's an enticing spa and a cosy pub serving hearty fare. For truly memorable accommodation and amazing sea views, go for a beach hut or suite.
Rooms available from £180 per night
Your expert reviewer
Babbacombe is one of the least spoilt and most picturesque bays on the English Riviera. The hotel sits right on the water beneath rich red sandstone cliffs; it's a wonderfully peaceful spot but if you find yourself craving a little more buzz, lively Torquay is within easy reach.
By car: 50 minutes from Exeter, 2 hours from Bristol and 4 hours from London. Free parking on-site.
By train: London Paddington to Torquay takes under 3 hours. It's a 10-minute taxi to the hotel. Book trains to Torquay.
THE LOOK AND FEEL
The main building, which houses the bar, restaurant and some rooms, is Victorian; it has the feel of a traditional inn with stone walls, oak beams and dark wooden furniture. The beach huts and suites are quite different - bright and thoroughly modern with expansive glass making the most of the views.
Small enough to provide personal service, the hotel offers extras like fishing equipment to borrow and guided coastal walks. Staff can help arrange all manner of activities locally, from watersports to family days out. The car park is up a steep hill from the hotel but there is a valet service.
- Games room
- Free parking
- Free Wi-Fi
BED AND BATH
There's a wide range of accommodation: rooms in the main building echo the traditional inn but have been given light, fresh décor; self-caterers can choose from cottages of varying sizes. Closer to the water, modern beach huts and suites offer privacy and the best sea views. Expect comfy beds and little luxuries.
Room types: Deluxe, Luxury, Captain's Suite, Shell Suite, Pebble Suite, Beach Hut, Beach Suite
Key amenities: ensuite bathroom with toiletries, bathrobes, tea and coffee facilities, TV, free Wi-Fi
FOOD AND DRINK
The restaurant and bar sport rustic décor - stonework, oak beams and log fires - while the conservatory has captivating sea views. For warmer days there's a terrace with pizza oven. The menu features traditional pub fare. With Brixham just 12 miles away you can be sure the fish is fresh.
Cary Arms: traditional inn, locally sourced produce, seasonal menus. Dishes include ale battered Brixham fish, fillet steak and oven baked duo of fish. Open daily for lunch and dinner.
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