Escape with Christchurch Harbour Hotel where gorgeous sea views, zen spa and cosy blanket nights await you.
There’s something about a calm sea view that can simply take your breath away, that’s what makes this coastal hotel the perfect break. Every head turn you see nothing but pure relaxation, to the left, a couple enjoying their favourite pastime, the classic wine and dine in The Jetty, Award-Winning Seafood Restaurant and to your right, bathers soaking up the sun in the spa garden post massage.
The foyer is large enough to drop your luggage off quickly although the receptionist’s do kindly offer to take your luggage to your room anyway. Anybody who loves boating, fishing or just generally loves being by the sea this one’s for you!
Our room was a thing of nautical beauty, the decor suited a hotel on the edge of the coast perfectly. Flowing straight through to the clean and bright ensuite bathroom, roomy but with a touch of modern elegance, fitted with a generous stand-in shower and a large bath tub featuring a traditional mixer shower tap. Beautiful amenities stocked by The White Company. We had the best harbour view double room which truly was the best. Shabby chic galore with all the distressed furnishings. Beautifully crafted bedrooms, fit for both comfort and convenience. Fitting with the chic Bristol Harbour Hotel, they offered a complimentary gin decanter for that special touch. Although no whiskey this time, so no cheeky late night Irish coffees. No need to head to the shops should you get peckish. A fridge full to the brim with different beverages and munchies including Frobishers fruit juices and an array of Green and Blacks chocolate selection.
The spa is great for both detox and relaxation. They have a salt grotto which releases salt into the air for your skin to absorb, cleansing the pores and acting as a natural healer too. A large sauna with coals and a spacious steam room. The towels are located before you get into the spa and the changing rooms. This is something to remember or you will have to go back on yourself to grab a towel, wasting precious spa time. The changing rooms themselves are actually quite small, but you can see how they have tried to accommodate for your every need within the little space.
As for the spa itself, an absolute beauty. Luxurious to the eye, accommodating and a real health fix. You enter through the changing facilities and into the spa by an automated sliding door, a feel for modern elegance here.
The pool is 12 metres long and up to a depth of 1.4m so plenty of opportunity for regular swimmers. The pool is lit up with a duo colour of blue and turquoise lights which adds a vibe to the entire spa. Water reflecting effect on the ceiling creates an illusion of movement. I caught myself relaxing into this as if I was in a somewhat trance making it an ideal spot for mindfulness. Neck massager featured in the hydrotherapy pool which was an absolute treat. I wasn’t able to book in for treatment on this occasion so being able to have my back pummelled away at in the jacuzzi was just what I needed. My friend had the 25 minute bespoke massage and was totally conked out ready for a snooze after. Her therapist paid attention to some really knotty muscles in her upper back, relieving her of some physical tension. The atmosphere was somewhat busy but the hotel had a wedding party the weekend we stayed so I assume this wasn’t a regular occurrence. I noticed everyone was just chucking their bath robes onto the comfy seating which was a shame as they were using up the space, making it look cluttered and untidy when there are plenty of hooks around the spa for you to hang your towel and robe up. You will find a couple of bed loungers with pillows for those who wish to relax by the pool. The towels were very generous whilst the robes being modesty covering only. It’s worth noting that the gym overlooks the spa through dimmed windows.
You will find a door saying ‘Hide Out’, this takes you upstairs to a quiet relaxation area. Large enough for all to relax in, they provide fresh fruit and iced fruit infused water here as you are not allowed to have any other food or drink in there. Just outside is the secluded spa garden, you still feel included in the rest of the hotel but you have your privacy should you wish to sunbathe. Stunning views of the harbour from here too.
Breakfast was pretty standard, plentiful continental buffet including a scrumptious berry compote which I enjoyed with muesli, granola and flaked almonds. Delicious!
As we entered the Upper Deck Restaurant, we seen a sign asking us to wait to be seated but nobody came to attend to us. It was a bit carefree and lacking attention to us as guests. We were told there was no tables left outside which was unfortunate as the weather was beautifully sunny! We saw there were several tables outside that weren’t being used, so we assumed they were reserved. When we asked about reserving a table for our lunch booking we had made, we were told we weren’t able to reserve tables. Confusing to say the least. Although we didn’t sit outside we had a nice view of the harbour from our table.
Fab breakfast menu should you wish to have something hot cooked from the kitchen including smoked kippers on toast. A server will come along shortly after you sit to take your hot drink order and in time your hot food order too. A vast selection of refreshing fruit juices readily available at the bar including grapefruit and cranberry. The service at breakfast was a little lackluster and they weren’t even particularly rushed off their feet to let this slide. Then again, I understand how some people just aren’t chatty in the morning so they might have this approach for the guests preferences.
Lunch was simply divine. Crusty white breads to start, gin to sip and steak to devour. I must say the Ultimate G&T cocktail is quite something. Hit the spot on a hot summers day that’s for sure. My friend lapped up a refreshing elderflower mojito. We loved their bamboo look straws, perfectly sat between the sprigs of mint submerged at the top of the fashioned collins glass.
For her main, fish and chips with shaven peas and the fattest most fluffiest chips! For mine, rump steak with truffle parmesan fries and a bernaise sauce. All piping hot. Sat opposite a beautiful view of the harbour we enjoyed our chocolate brownie with pistachio ice cream, delish! The service at lunch was very attentive, topping up our water and so on.
The garden backing onto the harbour amazed me, it covers a lot of ground so you can have quite a leisurely wander around. Come twilight it gets even better, lanterns lighting up your vision setting you in a mood of complete tranquility. Looking across the sea view to the opposed harbour, the sea is lit up with reflections across the water. I loved sipping away on cocktails from the waterfront seafood restaurant, The Jetty whilst gazing over this view. Adjacent to the Upper Deck is an outside balcony terrace with a stream of sofas which at nightfall come dressed with cosy blankets. Cosy up, order yourself a nightcap and simply take it all in. Blissful.
A fantastic place to settle for all of you seeking the harbour lifestyle. Expect a 4 star establishment, with a relaxed contemporary feel and likewise relaxed service.