An insider's guide to the county's best kept secrets
Le Strange Arms Hotel
Golf Course Road
Tel: 01485 534411
A traditional hotel full of history with a stunning sea shore setting and idyllic Norfolk charm plus modern facilities and thoughtful service ensuring your stay is as perfect as the view.
Where to find it
Le Strange Arms takes its name from the Le Strange family who developed the area back in the 1800s as a sea bathing resort. The hotel is situated in the original settlement of Old Hunstanton which is now a subsidiary village to the main large resort of Hunstanton, 2 miles away. Still very much a traditional seaside town with promenade, its defining feature is its famous striped cliffs. It is also the only East coast resort to face West across the Wash lending itself to some of the most mesmerising sunsets over the ocean. The hotel’s unrivalled location right by one of the finest sandy beaches in Norfolk makes this a most appealing accommodation choice. There is a golf course next door and over the road a large arts, antiques and crafts barn to explore as well as The Strandline driftwood shop nearby (click here for a review).
What to expect
Having gained four star AA accreditation, luxury is present in every room but pleasingly without losing any of its traditional charm. A mix of old and new works well here. Bathrooms are of exceptional standard having been revamped to the highest orders but period features have been cherished such as some of the original fire places. You can imagine London guests in 1880, when it opened its doors as a spa resort hotel, paying their extra shillings to have their fire lit in their room on their return from a brisk walk along the shores. Rest and relaxation remains prominent to this day and whilst the hotel does have conference facilities, even businesses claim they get more work done here because they are able to de-stress and clear their minds.
The setting is idyllic in every way. A tasteful restaurant and breakfast lounge as well as relaxed seating areas all overlook the landscaped grounds that sweep down to the beach and sea beyond. Vast and expansive views are a given in a privileged section of coastline renowned for being an ‘area of outstanding natural beauty’. With at least 15 of its 43 rooms having full sea views and many more partial views, a stay here is sure to uplift you.
Le Strange doesn’t have a pool which is really the only thing missing from an otherwise complete checklist. We can forgive them though since the great ocean is at our feet and Oasis leisure centre only moments away. As well as a fine restaurant, conservatory lounge, and pleasing oak bar that serves morning coffees, light lunches and afternoon teas, there is also The Ancient Mariner pub right next door serving real ale and good traditional pub food all day long (click here for a review).
Tailor made accommodation
Their slogan – “We’ll do everything we can to make you feel at home while you’re away from yours” resonates true with every booking taken. The choice of rooms on offer is impressive covering every need imaginable. They have a lift with accessible rooms fitted with walk in showers for disabled guests and a variety of options for families with walk through rooms and lounge suites. The attention to detail is touching; the director, Robert Wyllie, thinks of everything from positioning of furniture to level of lighting in bed for comfortable night time reading. They encourage you to discuss all your needs on booking priding themselves on meeting your requirements for a pleasant stay. I stayed the night with a sick friend once and the service she was given was considerate and thorough throughout. Full dining service in her room was of no bother to them given the circumstances and they remained helpful and attentive at all times.
It is not surprising to learn that a high percentage of bookings are repeat business, nor that word of mouth brings many new visitors; this is a hotel that’s busy all year round. It’s an excellent location for rambling and bird watching with RSPB Titchwell and guided walks nearby. It is also hugely popular for weddings, both receptions and civil ceremonies with many rooms available to cater for various parties and various events. They also have self catering facilities now in the new addition of the Boat House offering sensational views over the lawns and beach from the balcony.
Bed and breakfast prices range from £75 to £150 for a standard room; superiors with sea views from £95. Getaway leisure breaks including dinner are available at special offer prices and theme stays are also available – for instance, a bird watching tour break is £235 and includes two nights dinner bed and breakfast, a packed lunch on both days, mini bus service and a tour guide. Ring for more details. There is ample free on site car parking.