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“Just excellent in every way.”
Review of Hell Bay

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Hell Bay
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Bryher
Certificate of Excellence
Newton Abbot, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Just excellent in every way.”
Reviewed 8 October 2013

We had heard good things of this hotel and location and it more than matched them in every way. Although we had a difficult trip getting there; our flight was cancelled due to the weather and we had to go by sea the following day; the hotel more than made up for this disappointing start. It was fabulous in all aspects and they went out of their way to help us stay on for an extra day to make up for our loss at the beginning. It is not easy to get to Bryher but the hotel and their staff make it as easy as possible. The food is brilliant, the accommodation spacious and perfect, the location stunning. We were on a special break, so the value for money was outstanding. All in all a fantastic few, relaxing days in this idyllic setting.

Room Tip: We stayed in a studio suite with sea views and a patio opening on to the garden.
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank David M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hell Bay H, Front Office Manager at Hell Bay, responded to this review, 11 December 2013
We are so pleased to hear you enjoy your stay with us in October and did not let that unfortunate start to your stay get in the way of enjoying your visit to the Isles of Scilly.
We hope we will be able to welcome you back to Hell Bay Hotel in the not to distant future.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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257 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (69)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Cornwall
Level Contributor
9 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 October 2013

We arrived on the beautiful island of Bryher 24 hours later than planned due to fog, but in the end this was a bonus! We contacted the hotel when we knew our flight - and all others on the day- was cancelled and asked if we could extend a day so as to still have 4 nights. We had a call back confirming that this was fine and also they had rearranged our return transfers and flight. This was an excellent start to our stay and reflects the attention given by the staff to guests needs. So thank you for that!

We travelled with my parents and each couple had a studio suite looking over the bay. The rooms were lovely and warm and attractively decorated. A comfy bed, small sofa and armchair and chairs plus lounger with cushions on the decking. Our extended day turned out to be warm enough to use the decking facilities, perfect relaxation - in October!

The food at Hell Bay is superb. Breakfast was plentiful, I'm not sure what else one could ask for -cereals, juices, fresh fruit, compotes, yoghurt, pastries and a really good and varied choice of cooked. My favourite was served with a very generous portion of smoked salmon. My husband needs a gluten free diet and at every meal he was served gluten free rolls and given gluten free options. Hell Bay also serves the best crab sandwiches I have ever had and when eaten on their terrace overlooking the bay it completes the perfect lunch! Evening meals start in the bar lounge with tempting morsels to nibble on whilst perusing the menu. Three choices in each course, all tempting and I was never disappointed with my choice, they certainly deserve their rosettes.

What I love about holidays here is the mode of transport - you walk, you catch a boat, you walk. Everything feels so laid back and unhurried. We were so lucky with the weather considering the forecasts had been so bad, a few spots of rain for a few minutes didn't stop us exploring Bryher - tranquil and beautiful. A boat to Tresco and more strolling, watching the sea birds and soaking up the peaceful views. We also visited St Agnes, yet another island with its own character. And then, after our days spent island hopping we returned to the tranquillity that is Hell Bay Hotel - the name so belies the place.

Thank you to all the lovely, attentive staff, you do a great job and help make a stay at Hell Bay Hotel a really memorable one. We look forward to returning.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank fairbankredds
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hell Bay H, Front Office Manager at Hell Bay, responded to this review, 11 December 2013
Thank you for taking the time to write such a nice review. We are pleased to see that you enjoyed all the aspects that not only what we have to offer but what the Islands have.
We hope to welcome you back in 2014.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
foolsgold__
Level Contributor
11 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 October 2013

This was our second stay at the Hell Bay, our first having been a couple of years ago as part of our honeymoon. It’s still just as wonderful. Staying on Bryher is always special, but staying at Hell Bay is something else. It is expensive – really, really expensive – but you enter a bubble of understated, unpretentious luxury and suddenly the price (and any other worries) don’t seem to matter.

The hotel itself is simply beautiful. It’s small and manicured just enough to feel like a little haven without being stuffy. It has a real sense of fun too – an inner quad with little screened sitting areas, a giant chess set, croquet on the lawn, and chickens in the posh-est hen houses you’ll ever see. There is a heated outdoor pool , a play area for small children, and a games room with jacuzzi, sauna and gym. The jazuzzi is a fun way to warm through after a day walking in the rain. But this isn’t what this hotel is really about; most people spend their time pottering around the island rather than sitting by the pool.

There is a range of rooms to choose from. We went with a studio suite, which although they don’t have a separate lounge, they do have a terrace or balcony with the most amazing views over Great Porth and out to sea. The rooms are thoughtfully laid out. Little things make it special. Like the fact the tea cupboard has a fridge with fresh milk, a teapot and cafetiere rather than sachets, plus a sink so you can still fill up the kettle if the bathroom is in use. Or the fresh bottled water left in the fridge each day (the drinking water is perfectly safe, but tastes chalky because of the way it is stored and processed on the island). Or the bed, which is so very comfortable and if, you want them, then feather pillows are available.

The food is consistently great. Breakfast is a cold buffet (pastries, cereal, yoghurt, fruit etc) with hot options. Dinner is a fine dining five course affair. The range of options isn’t huge, but given it’s all shipped in or foraged (you sometimes see the chef in the garden picking things for the table) that’s understandable. The restaurant deserves its rosettes. We are lucky enough to live in a part of the UK with some of the best restaurants in the country, but Hell Bay is up there with them. The wine list is pretty good too.

We found the staff to be fantastic, especially the girls who man the restaurant and bar. People clearly come to Hell Bay with really high expectations and we were impressed that the staff were unrelentingly positive and tried to meet pretty much whatever request came their way.

Part of the fun is the adventure of getting there. We would have flown into St Mary’s but it was foggy so we were transferred to the ferry. It was a smooth crossing but I think we were lucky and we were able to fly back. When you come to Bryher, you have to be prepared for flexible travel plans! The transfer between the hotel and the airport is well managed and smooth. The hotel doesn’t have its own boat; transfers are by Bryher Boat Services who operate a service for both Bryher and its bigger sister Tresco. Times are dictated by the tides and therefore only arranged the night before. You can’t get too rigid about your expectations of having a boat ready and waiting to transfer you. Just relax and go with it. Or, if you’re feeling flush, you can always charter your own boat.

Probably the most difficult thing about staying at Hell Bay is the risk of not making it there at all in bad weather. Whilst we were staying there were a couple of people who had sadly missed a few days of their holiday due to fog grounding the planes and not being able to make the ferry (which leaves early morning). Because we knew there’s always a risk that can happen we booked a couple of nights on St Mary’s first as a “buffer” against losing precious Hell Bay time. You can’t blame the hotel for the weather, but when you’re paying so much for your stay, you don’t want to lose any nights if you can avoid it.

All in all, we had a magical stay. It was only a four night break, but we felt like we bumped happily from treat to treat. I got so into the holiday mode that I forgot what day of the week it was. We will be back... In fact we’ve already booked.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank foolsgold__71
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hell Bay H, Front Office Manager at Hell Bay, responded to this review, 11 December 2013
Thank you for your review, we are so pleased to hear you enjoy your stay with us in September and we hope we will be able to welcome you back in the not to distant future.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
14 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 September 2013

My husband, son and I recently stayed 3 nights at the Hell Bay Hotel. The hotel is cute and somehow reminds you of being at the Bahamas. However, we travelled with our 16months old son and this place is not ideal. Firstly the pool was dirty and cold. The spa looked like something that might have been nice in the 80'ties. And the most difficult part for us traveling with a small child was that we had to stick to the "meal times". there was no flexibility in terms of eating before the official meal time or ordering food from the menu after lunch time. This made it a bit difficult when you have a child whom might be hungry at different time. The food was good but not extraordinary. The breakfast selection was poor and one morning there was no fruit. The other mornings there was a some plums and pears- that was it. And for a fruit-loving person,- this was quite disappointing. The spa was good and I had a great massage. Especially the reception staff was very helpful and professional. The hotel location is beautiful and the island itself something very special. For a family holiday where we would have liked to stay by the pool and relax a bit this place was not ideal for us.

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Maria S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hell Bay H, Front Office Manager at Hell Bay, responded to this review, 10 April 2014
Thank you for taking the time to review your stay with us.
Since you stayed we have taken on board the comments from yourselves and others. We have improved the breakfast buffet, having a fresh fruit basket as well as a selection on sliced tropical fruits. We realise when travelling with children, families do like to dine together. As well as serving the high teas at 1730 we have introduced a 1830 seating where parents can be served the restaurant menu and the children still have the high teas.
The spa treatment room has been a really popular addition to the hotel and we have extended the treatment list for 2014.
We hope to be able to welcome you back to Hell Bay Hotel and show you the upgrades we have made around the hotel.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
138 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 87 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 September 2013

We try to make a trip to Phillip & his team's wonderful hotel on Bryher once every year. If you get the weather & we did, this cracking little hotel has no equal. It really is a touch paradise in the UK.
All the qualities & ammenities of a much grander hotel. The staff will always give you a warm welcome, if you have heavy bags they will pick you up from the quay. Very quiet, very relaxing. Food did not quite hit the spot this year, but the breakfast was superb. The rooms are beautifully decorated. I love this place.

Room Tip: Lower Nos are the better rooms
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Mike B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hertfordshire
Level Contributor
10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 September 2013

This hotels offers all a warm welcome and then shows you to your room, which was clean fresh and well appointed with stunning views from our room. The staff are very hard working and make sure nothing is too much bother. The dinner each night was divine and as a chef I felt spoilt and inspired.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Ruth G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
64 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 September 2013 via mobile

It's four years since our last visit and we weren't disappointed on our return. The journey was v easy from Newquay and the view from our bedroom was fabulous, but my husband and I both thought the bed was too soft and the pillows uncomfortable so our first 2 nights were not good ones ! The food was excellent and we asked for lobster for my husbands birthday dinner which was delicious and wonderfully presented. We paid for a four night package to include travel as well as DBand B so we were surprised to be asked for an extra £40 for our return boat if we didn't go on a scheduled boat. We will go again there is no where else like it

Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank Jan W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hell Bay

Property: Hell Bay
Address: Bryher, TR23 0PR, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Isles of Scilly > Bryher
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Bryher
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:4 star — Hell Bay 4*
Number of rooms: 25
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hell Bay Hotel is an award winning hotel on the beautiful island of Bryher on the Isles of Scilly. Set in a picturesque cove facing the Atlantic Ocean, Hell Bay offers families and couples a friendly and private oasis to relax and spend quality time together and to enjoy the wild, natural delights of Bryher and the other islands of Scilly. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Hell Bay Bryher, Isles Of Scilly
Hell Bay Hotel Bryher

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