Our first time with Janet, Andrew & their daughter Catherine at Abingdon House in Torquay. We found them through an ad in the Crossed Grain magazine for Coeliacs. Eating out and staying away from home can be a real worry when eating the smallest amount of gluten can make you ill, so it is an absolute pleasure to find people who know their stuff, and Janet and Andrew certainly do.
We were greeted on arrival with Janet’s wonderful home-made gluten-free cake and a pot of tea. The Caunter family have only taken over Abingdon House in 2012 and have spent the early months completely refurbishing and redecorating throughout before opening in May, so all the rooms are top class. Ours was room 5, large & airy with 2 comfy chairs, cushions, plenty of drawers and a wardrobe with real coat hangers. There were extra pillows and blankets if required and we also had free WiFi and a 32 inch Freeview fully HD TV.
There is no bar at the Abingdon, but you can bring your own drinks which can be chilled for you if necessary. Glasses and ice are provided for guests. There is a lounge with a large TV and guests are also welcome to use the facilities at the Bancourt Hotel across the road where there is a bar and entertainment. There is a good selection of tea, coffee (including decaf coffee, Earl Grey and fruit teas), milk etc in the rooms, and you can help yourself to more if required from the reception desk in the hall where you will also find daily papers, local news and Devon Life to read. Also there is a fridge on the landing, full of bottles of cold water for guests to help themselves to. We found a pack of tourist info in our room, and on the landing there are plenty of ideas for days out. Having lived in the area for some years Janet and Andrew can happily suggest loads of other things to do while in the area, and good places to walk.
We stayed on half board basis which we heartily recommend as the cooking is to die for. The breakfasts really set you up for the day, fruit juice, cereal, fresh fruit, yogurt, and just about anything you can think of from a plain boiled egg to full English, followed by tea/coffee, toast & preserves It goes without saying that there are a selection of gluten-free cereals and of course GF sausages for Coeliac guests. There is plenty of choice for the 3 course evening meal, and I cannot begin to put into words just how wonderful is the cooking, you have to try it for yourself. Just don’t expect to lose any weight while you are here, even if you go out walking each day. Almost everything on the menu is gluten-free, and the few exceptions when it is not, there will be an alternative, for example Apple Strudel (not GF) can be replaced with Apple Crumble made with GF flour. There were 4 Coeliacs here when we stayed in May, one said he thought he had died and had gone to Coeliac Heaven. You don’t have to have a food intolerance to appreciate the fantastic food here.
Abingdon House is a small guest house, only 5 rooms, so you can be sure of friendly, personal attention from Janet, Andrew and Catherine and while we were staying, the hotel inspector awarded the Abingdon a 4 star silver award, and rightly so. This was our first time here, it certainly won’t be our last!
Dawn & Russ
- Also Known As:
- Abingdon Guest House Torquay, Devon
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Welcome to Abingdon House...4 Star Guest Accommodation with the very Special Silver Award Accreditation. Janet & Andrew Caunter, have been looking after their guests in Torquay since 1998 with their Personal, Attentive Service, Wonderful British Cooking for Evening Meals and Breakfasts. (Gluten Free too), Homely Atmosphere, Beautifully Furnished En-suite Accommodation, Ample Car Parking, Guest Lounge & Free Wifi. Abingdon House is ideally situated within the traditional holiday accommodation area. A short level walk will take you to Torre Abbey Gardens, Bus Stops to centre of town, Riviera Centre and Seafront Promenade. Ideal for exploring South Devon. Wonderful Evening Meals are served each evening by your Chef Proprietors with the option for to bring your own wine, spirits, beers & lagers which we will serve free of charge during the Evening Meal Service. The Bed, Breakfast & Evening Meal is our most popular Option( Gluten Free full choice menus available). Our Yummy Evening Meals, Fab Breakfasts, Brand New Bedrooms & Bathrooms (All Refurbished recently), Facilities, Service and those "Little Extra Touches", ensure that the Abingdon will provide you with you all your needs and ensure you feel welcome and have a most pleasant stay. ... more less
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