If you’re escaping the big smoke for a long weekend on the South Coast, this is our guide to the real Brighton. There’s more to this Sussex coastline gem than the beach.
If you’re after a more bohemian experience of Brighton, then you must stay at Blanch House, one of Brighton’s oldest original boutique hotels, situated in a discreet Georgian terrace in fashionable and bohemian Kemp Town. A mere stone's throw from the seafront and Brighton pier, situated on a quiet street, Blanch house is situated within easy access of everything. This charming hotel is cute and informal, with a bar, restaurant and just 12 rooms. Make sure you book the Perrier Jouet suite, unarguably best suite at this charming Regency townhouse,
For an intimate dining experience, book a table at English’s of Brighton, the oldest seafood restaurant in Brighton. A short wander through the infamous lanes and you’ll arrive at this iconic establishment where you have the choice of dining either inside or outside under the covered and heated terrace. Friendly and knowledgeable staff will help you navigate the menu that has traditional seafood and more contemporary dishes. Order the oysters here, they’re fresh, they are seasonal and they are served on ice with mignonette, tabasco sauces, lemon or ponzu, spring onion, wasabi sriracha. From the starters, go for the Fried basket: shrimp croquette, calamari, tempura soft shell crab, chilli, seaweed & lemon mayonnaise. From the mains, Fish of the day, chargrilled round courgette, preserved aubergines, olive crumb, nduja red pesto, dill is a must have. Enjoy this while sipping perfectly matched wine as you watch the world go by.
Alternatively, you’re guaranteed a top tier seafood dinner at Riddle and Finn’s, with its prime spot on the pier and windows with views that look directly onto the sea. The extensive menu at this popular champagne and oyster bar includes mouthwatering dishes including Scottish rope grown mussels with spicy harissa and Brighton seared scallops with chilli tamarind, pork crackling and lemon mayo. From the mains, the squid and shellfish risotto is an absolute triumph.
For a brunchy treat, book a table at Rockwater, the beautiful beachside restaurant that offers exceptional but relaxed dining right along the beach. Split across three floors each offering a unique dinning experience, and the same stunning views, it's a beachside dining experience like no other. It will be hard to resist daring cocktails like the solero which is their stunning concoction that fuses Bacardi Rum, Passionfruit, Mango, Orange, Coconut Cream, Vanilla. The menu is an eclectic mix of starters and larger plates, designed to be shared. It's a seafood lover's fantasy with dishes such as King Prawns, with avocado shells, radicchio, scallops in nori brown butter and miso cod loin (by far the best dish on the menu). For the ultimate sharer plate, the beef short rib is an impressive hunk of meat that's cooked to perfection and served with pico di gallo, sour cream , avocado and tortilla. Enjoy all this and the good vibes in an airy, contemporary space that you never want to leave.
A visit to Brighton is incomplete without going up into the sky to enjoy views on the Brighton i360, glass of English Sparkling Wine in hand with a stunning sunset as your perfect backdrop. A stone's throw away from the i360 is the Brighton zipline, a bucket list experience of gliding 300 metres along Brighton beach,with the wind in your hair and the beach beneath your feet. For something a little less adrenaline fuelled, jump on Volk’s train which is the oldest working electric railway in the world on a scenic ride that takes you from Aquarium Station to Black Rock (Marina).
Get lost in the infamous lanes, and discover the North Laine and take in the eclectic mix of independent shops and cafes. Explore The Open Market which is home to local producers and purveyors of freshest fare. Sip on the finest coffee from one of the plethora of coffee shops that Brighton has to offer. Fun fact: Brighton is the UK’s coffee capital with the highest number of coffee shops per person.
For evening fun, you won't be short of lively spots. In the mood for cocktails? Harbour hotel offers the best cocktails with a view. For a more chill evening, head to Bootlegger for a mellow night of jazz.
Cramming in all that Brighton has to offer can be tiresome so if you’re looking for something to do why not book a relaxing couples treatment. For the ultimate reboot, head to Pure Spa , the newly rebranded spa. at the spa at DoubleTree by Hilton Brighton Metropole- it truly is an oasis in the city that has impressive spa facilities that include treatment rooms, couples), steam and sauna and relaxing area.
your shoulders lower as soon as you’re greeted by the friendly staff and offered the squishiest and comfiest of robes and slippers ready for your treatment. With a plethora of treatments to choose from, picking one can be hard. If in doubt go for the Pure Face & Body Sensation which is a A 90-minute targeted full body massage followed with a facial prescribed to your needs, using Pure’s own line is 100% natural, vegan range of oil based serums, cleansers and massage oils. This therapy is the perfect all-over body treatment.
Treatment starts with a calming foot ritual and consultation and The bespoke massage that follows is completely relaxing, and effortlessly soothes out and harmonises any physical and mental tensions. You’ll feel your tension worries dissipate as the therapist's hands glide all over your body, encouraging lymphatic drainage, stimulating blood flow and restoring your energy and balance. Post treatment, a snooze in the relaxation area rounds off a perfect spa experience.
The best bit is that with the Hilton conveniently situated on the vibrant Brighton seafront, after your treatments you are mere steps away from Brighton Palace Pier, the Royal Pavilion, and the boutiques and bars of The Lanes are all within a half-mile for you to explore after your treatment.