Blog Details

We are a 2 star hotel with rooms situated throughout 4 floors. The hotel has no lift due to the grade 2 listed building status meaning we can't make alterations to install one. We will of course, help with luggage though.

Our food is traditional and cooked using fresh produce of fish, meats, vegetables & dairy sourced from Scilly & Cornwall where possible. Our style is not nouvelle cuisine or a fancy Michelin Star type restaurant.

Our experienced staff offer excellent & attentive service, far beyond the normal expectations for a 2 star rated hotel

Our swimming pool is 8 metres x 4 metres and so neither small, or Olympic size! An unusual extra facility compared to even many other hotels. Its size is governed by available space, and is covered in and heated.

Our rooms are comfortable & furnished to the same standard. All are en suite with either bath, shower or both, and some are compact, hence the special offer lower tariff for these.

The hotel is situated in the centre of Hugh Town, at the quieter side and is ideally positioned for easy access to the harbour for inter island boats to the inhabited islands of Tresco, Bryher, St Agnes & St Martins.

I try to post regular photographs of the islands, and you can see more of the hotel in the photo galleries on the right hand side of the page.

If you would like to contact us please feel free to email or telephone: Tel. 01720 422575

Monday, 28 November 2011

November 2011

It's been a while since I've posted anything, so I thought I had better give a quick update with a few piccies for good measure.

The hotel is now closed for the winter season, and will re-open again on Monday 12th March 2012. Don't forget our March offer for 2012, of just £189 per person, for a 3 night break including dinner, room & breakfast. Any further, night's tariff will be held pro-rata at £63 per person, per night.

During this winter, there will be a few goings on in the hotel for decorating etc. There's always something to do! For example, as I type this, Shirley is busy painting the ladies cloakroom. Both the gents & the ladies have been re-papered, and are being painted a lighter, fresher colour. The gents is also having new flooring.
...Plenty of other things going on too, so the sooner I wrap up this post, the sooner and can get myself covered in paint!

Enough of my waffle.... here's some Scilly pics from this last week.

Sunday 27th November 2011:

Tuesday 22nd November 2011:

Monday 21st November 2011:

Friday, 7 October 2011

Photos of October

Well, it's been a little while since I've managed to get to work on the blog, so here are some pictures of last Sunday 2nd October.

Saturday, 17 September 2011

Guest Card of Thanks

Guest Email of Thanks

----- Original Message -----
From: Bridget Herd
To: 'Bell Rock Hotel'
Sent: Monday, September 12, 2011 8:49 PM
Subject: RE: Bell Rock Hotel

We did enjoy our holiday very much and found the hotel comfortable and the staff very friendly and helpful. We would like to come back to the Scilly Isles and would definitely consider staying with you again.

Bridget Herd

Friday 16th September 2011

It has been a week of settled weather, and tucked in out of the slight breeze the heat of the sun was very warm when I took this photo. Porthcressa now very quiet since the schools went back.

Guest Letter of Thanks

Friday, 16 September 2011

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor

“First visit to the Bell Rock, favourably impressed”

Reviewed 11 September 2011

Over many years we have visited the Isles of Scilly, starting back in 1980. This is the first time we have stayed at the Bell Rock Hotel and we were impressed with the standard of the room, cleaned daily and drinks/biscuits topped up, and excellent breakfasts. Evening meals good, althouh if there is a criticism, it would be the main course choices were a little unadventurous. We would have no hesitation in recommending the Bell Rock.

Stayed August 2011, travelled as a couple

***Footnote From Daniel***

We are really pleased to see that you have been visiting Scilly for many years, and that you have obviously fallen in love with the place. We are also pleased that you have chosen to stay with us at the Bell Rock Hotel for the first time, and that you were impressed with our standards and quality of service. You mention the main courses as unadventurous. We offer the more traditional style of food, concentrating on flavour & quality without the fuss of nouvelle cuisine. We find this is what the majority of our guests enjoy about the Bell Rock Hotel, and why they keep coming back time after time. There are sample menus posted on the hotel blog website for anyone wishing to view these.
Hopefully we will be welcoming you back again in the future.

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor

“excellent hotel want to go back”

Reviewed 10 September 2011

We can't praise the hotel too highly courteous, helpful polite staff very good food excellent restaurant service and so on and so on one slight nit-pick the sleeping area of our room was rather small however rather than a pokey little en-suite the bathroom area was a proper room in its own right visit the other islands see the seals walk round St Mary's

Room Tip: if you get a choice of room get one that suits they are all very different

***Footnote From Daniel***

It looks like you have enjoyed your stay here with us at the Bell Rock Hotel, and I am pleased our staff have looked after you well whilst you were here.
I see that you have picked up on the fact that our rooms can be very different in both shape and size. The hotel is a very old building; at the front especially, and this does depict the rooms' characteristics somewhat. I have a full set of photos of all bedrooms on our blog website and encourage guests to view these before making a booking, as obviously everyone has different requirements. All bedrooms are furnished to the same standard throughout. I am sure your Room Tip in your review will help others.


I would just like to say "Thank You" to everyone who looks at my blog, be it regularly or just as a pre-visit research. The site has now had over 10,000 hits!

Friday, 9 September 2011

Photographs Of September So Far!

I've taken quite a few photographs over the last week or so, but not had a chance to upload them onto the blog. Here are a few tasters. I shall also put more onto the Bell Rock Hotel Facebook.

Friday 9th Sept. 2011 - FOG!
We are now into our 2nd day in a row of fog! Thick as a bag to say the least. There was no flying at all yesterday, and the forecast for today is not looking very good... Tomorrow, Saturday; well that's another day. Fingers crossed there will be reprieve by then?!

A walk around the Garrison - 7th Sept. 2011
The skies were grey, but the weather still warm. I took a coat, but carried it as I was too hot.
The greys looked moody and the silvery sea shimmering from the sun trying to break through were quite dramatic. The waves breaking on the rocks were bright green.

Peninnis Lighthouse - 2nd Sept. 2011
There are many Swallows nesting under the walkway below the light. The camera on my phone just about picks them up.
Sadly, Trinity House have covered over the original main circular sweeping light lense now and are utilising a flashing LED type light. The worrying thing about it is the range of the light, which has been reduced to nearly half the original range of 17 nautical miles to 9 (19.5 land miles reduced to 10.3). Allegedly the original lense has now been covered up as it is a fire risk. This in my opinion seems bizarre as it has been running a parrafin lamp for years which is highly flammable.

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Our First German TripAdvisor Review!

“Kann das naechste Mal kaum erwarten....”

Was soll ich war RUNDHERUM einfach super!
5 Tage durften wir in diesem "Kleinod" von Hotel verbringen. Vom ersten Tag an haben wir uns willkommen und sehr wohl gefuehlt. Das Personal zuvorkommend und herzlich. Das Essen abwechslungsreich und excellent zubereitet. Zimmer und Bad sehr sehr sauber. Die Lage des Hotels ist wirklich zentral und trotzdem sehr ruhig.
Bitte von den "2 Sternen" nicht irritieren lassen, das Hotel haette fuer mich locker "4" verdient.
Es herrscht insgesamt ein sehr familiaeres Klima, dies wird wohl noch unterstuetzt durch die netten Abende, die man, wenn gewuenscht, in dem Salon mit Bar geniessen kann und somit jederzeit mit anderen Gaesten, hauptsaechlich Englaendern, in Kontakt kommt.
Spielesammlungen und eine kleine Bibliothek runden das Ganze ab.
Fuer uns war's einfach traumhaft und wir koennen unseren naechsten Scilly Urlaub kaum erwarten.....

***Rough Translation***

What can I say .... it was all around just great! 5 days we spent in this "jewel" of the hotel. From day one we felt very comfortable and welcome. The staff courteous and cordial. The food prepared varied and excellent. Room and bathroom very very clean. The hotel's location is really central but very quiet. Request of the "two stars" must irritate the hotel as would have earned for me "4". There is overall a very homely environment, this is probably supported by the nice evenings, which can, if desired, be enjoyed in the lounge with a bar and thus any time with other guests, mainly English, comes in contact. Games and small library collections round out the whole thing.
For us it was amazing and we can hardly wait for our next holiday ..... Scilly

Saturday, 3 September 2011

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor

“Excellent and good value hotel”

Reviewed 2 September 2011

This was our first time on the Isles of Scilly and we were delighted to have chosen this hotel, based on the reviews we had read. We agree with all positive thoughts about Bell Rock, which is well-situated, well-run by friendly yet extremely polite staff and provides good food. Our comment about the food is that we thought the breakfasts extremely good as were the evening meals but whilst there was nothing at all wrong with the main courses we had, we both felt the standard of the starters and desserts was superior.

Having viewed the rooms on the hotel's blog, we opted for room 18, which was cosy rather than spacious and had a lovely view towards Tresco. It was spotlessly clean as was all the hotel. The only suggestion I would make is to change the dark coloured hand towel in the ladies downstairs toilet. I don't like dark coloured towels because you never know if they are dirty or not! Paper ones would be more hygenic.

We found Paul Hicks coming into breakfast to inform us of his boat trips very helpful and preferred this to having to go down to the harbour to book. We felt comfortable with his manner and did not feel at all awkward to decline on days when we had decided to do something else.

We hold happy memories of our stay here and do not hesitate to recommend this hotel, which considering prices at some of the other hotels, is extremely good value.

Stayed August 2011, travelled as a couple

***Footnote From Daniel***

Thank you for your kind words about the Bell Rock Hotel. We are really pleased you enjoyed your stay here, and that the reviews you read prompted your visit. I am sure your review here will also help others in the future.

I have taken on board your comments about the towels in the public toilets. It is a very good point, and we shall investigate the options to provide paper towelling facilities for the 2012 season. As you say, some people prefer to use paper; but at the same time others will prefer towels, so we will look to provide both.

Friday, 2 September 2011

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor

“We loved it and we will be again”

Reviewed 30 August 2011

We arrived after our daughter's wedding needing a peaceful rest. The hotel room provided all we needed. Breakfasts were as big as you wished for both in choice of cold and hot. Evening meals gave a good choice of starters, main meals and sweets. The staff were attentive and during our stay developed a raport with us which made us feel valued. The hotel is excellently positioned with short walks to the beaches, boats and shops. The added bonus is the visit each morning by a local boatman to talk you through the trips he is offering that day without the pressure to buy. This hotel rovides for all ages from my 85 year old mother downwards.
Airport and harbour transport is always on arrival.

Room Tip: All rooms are quiet having stayed here on three occasions and sampled rooms on all floors.

Stayed August 2011, travelled with family

***Footnote From Daniel***
We are really pleased you enjoyed your restful break on Scilly, staying here at the Bell Rock Hotel. We are even more delighted that this looks to be your 3rd visit! We hope to see you again soon.

I just also wanted to make a note about arrival & transfers for others' information as you have brought it up.

If arriving to Scilly on either the Helicopter or Fixed Wing Aircraft, there are dedicated transfer minibuses that automatically meet each flight to transfer people to their accommodation. It is always more economical to purchase a return ticket with them.

If arriving by sea, it is advisable to pre-book a local taxi if you require transport from the quay, as there are not always taxis available on the quay.
Your luggage will automatically be delivered from the ship, to your accommodation on St Mary's as long as you have labelled your luggage accordingly. The local haulage companies unload the ship's containers straight onto the lorries & vans, and charge a small fee for the service (2011 prices: £1.20 per item). If you wish to take your own luggage from the ship, just wait where they are unloading them & let the guys know when you see your luggage!

I hope this helps those that are new to the islands.

Monday, 29 August 2011

Guest Email of Thanks

----- Original Message -----
From: Laura Alborghetti
To: 'Bell Rock Hotel'
Sent: Monday, August 29, 2011 9:16 AM
Subject: Bell Rock Hotel

Dear Daniel,

After a few days in London I am back to Italy and to work now!

I just would like to thank you for everything you have done for me while I was on the Isles of Scilly. You and all your staff made my holiday special !

I really hope to come back in the future, thank you again

Kind regards

Laura Alborghetti

Friday, 26 August 2011

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor

“Even better than last year!”

Reviewed 20 August 2011

As a rule we never repeat holidays but we enjoyed our stay at The Bell Rock last year we decided to go straight back and we were not disappointed. This year we had a lovely room on the first floor with a small but immaculate en-suite. The first impression of the hotel was of the high standard of cleanliness and it came as no surprise to see that the hotel had won an award for this. The food at both breakfast and evening meals could not be faulted and on the one occasion my wife was not enamoured with the veggie choice the chef produced an alternative. The standard of service was of the highest quality and the waiting staff manage to combine efficiency with being very personable.
Everything about our stay was perfect. Many thanks to Daniel and his outstanding staff.

Stayed August 2011, travelled as a couple

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor (and Daniel's footnote)

“Nothing wrong, but It wasn't us”

Reviewed 23 August 2011

One of the things that staying at the Bell Rock has taught us is that whilst all the reviews give the Bell Rock good ratings, it all comes down to individual tastes and needs. This was the first time in 20+ years that we have booked B&B + Evening Meal and so we were not used to the formallity of a hotel dinning room where everyone sat at "their table" for their stay and also having dinner at 6pm is alien to us. in fact after the first evening when we came down at 7pm to find that 2 of the 4 main courses were finished, we decided to eat out for the next 2 nights.

Whilst we were there we meet several people who always come back to the Bell Rock for the same week evey year, so for these people it is great, but it was not our sort of place. As other reviews have stated the rooms are clean and the staff are helpful and it is close to the centre of Hugh Town

Stayed August 2011, travelled as a couple

***Daniel's Footnote***

It's a fair an honest review, but certainly not a bad one. I'm pleased you found the hotel and stay a comfortable & enjoyable one on the whole.
It is true that serviced accommodation to include evening meals does not necessarily suit everyone.
Dinner service runs from 6pm through to 8pm for last orders, and on the whole, dishes are usually available throughout, but as you say on this occasion, we had run out of the Lamb Shank which was extremely popular that night (I remember the evening service in question). Sometimes, a dish will be more popular than expected and run out; which is why I suggested that the next day, if you wished to eat later and particularly wanted a certain dish you could pre-order; although as stated, you chose to dine out for the remainder of your stay.
Many guests do tend to eat earlier rather than later, but I would disagree that it is a formal affair as we encourage a more relaxed, less stuffy environment.

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Sunset - Tuesday 16th August 2011

The sunset on Tuesday was amazing! The colours were just so vivid purples, and reds. I was very lucky to have caught it, and ran out the hotel to get the picture. Sadly, only having my mobile on me, it won't be as good as if I'd had my proper camera.

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor

“A very enjoyable holiday”

Reviewed 17 August 2011

Never having gone on holiday with 3 generations before, 8 of us aged from 15 to 76, we found the Bell Rock Hotel suited us all very well. The food was very good and varied, even for the 3 vegetarians; the service excellent and always cheerful; and our rooms suited all our needs with comfortable beds and daily immaculately cleaned. We enjoyed swimming in the indoor pool and chatting in the bar-lounge. The hotel is well placed and so close to all that Scilly offers on St Mary's. We all loved the whole 4-day stay.

Stayed August 2011, travelled with family

Saturday, 13 August 2011

Guest Email of Thanks

----- Original Message -----
From: Susanne Furse
Sent: Friday, August 12, 2011 2:42 PM
Subject: Recent Stay

Dear Sirs

We have just returned home from a weekend in the Scillys and we stayed with you.

I just wanted to write to you all to thank you for our wonderful stay. The hotel was spotlessly clean, the food was wondeful and we thoroughly enjoyed true Scilly hospitality.

We have stayed at 'The Ritz' and The Bell Rock Hotel is far superior!

We will no doubt be returning!

Many thanks to everyone again.

Best wishes

Luke and Susanne Furse

Saturday, 6 August 2011

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor

“We thorughly enjoyed out stay and will be back!”

Reviewed 5 August 2011

We were warmly welcomed to the Bell Rock and shown to our very comfortable rooms. They were very comfortable, bright and inviting. Meals were excellent with a good choice at both breakfast and dinner. Every member of staff we met was friendly, cheerful and really knew their jobs.

The Bell Rock is so well placed between the two beaches and an easy stroll to the shops & boats. A boatman comes to discuss trips for the day - he really did "do" excellent trips tailored to his passengers.

We are looking forward to next year when we will be back! Thank you everyone.

Stayed August 2011, travelled with friends

Guest Note of Thanks - Saturday 6th August 2011

Friday 5th August 2011

An overcast sort of day with sunny spells. Still warm though!

The burial chamber at Porth Hellick, and it's information sign (hope the words are big enough to see when the picture is clicked onto!?)

Thursday, 4 August 2011

Thursday 4th August 2011

I spotted a large fungus growing on the side of a tree this afternoon on the roadside to the Old Town Churchyard

Tuesday 2nd August 2011

A walk around Peninnis! A little cloudy, but still very bright... a little over exposed unfortunately, but I wanted to focus more on the foreground, so the sky lost out this time:

There are loads of these rock stacks on Carn Leh at the moment!

Saturday, 30 July 2011

Saturday 30th July 2011

Another beautiful day today. Clear blue skies, flat calm sea... I'm, just hoping it will be the same again for Sunday (my day off!)

St Mary's Harbour 8.30am

Porthcressa Beach - Busy in the afternoon


Old Town Bay 9pm

Friday 29th July 2011

What a scorcher! It was blazing sunshine on my walk around the east coast of St Mary's but luckily there was a breeze to take the edge off the sun, but out of the breeze it was intensly hot!

Carn Leh & Old Town Bay

Porth Hellick

Tuesday 26th July 2011

I went out for a long walk in the afternoon around the north end of St Mary's, and it was a pleasant day; warm & bright, but then around 2pm the mist rolled in briefly for about half an hour... so this picture is rather an unfair depiction of the day!

In case you are wondering where I was when I took the photo, it's taken from Innisidgen looking towards the Eatern Isles & St Martins!

Visitor Book - 02.07.11 to 28.07.11

Visitor Book - 14.06.11 to 01.07.11

Guest Letter of Thanks

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Sunday 24th & Monday 25th July 2011

After the glorious sunshine on Saturday, it was a shame to be shrouded in fog for 2 days! It didn't matter a great deal on Sunday as there is no scheduled flying of planes & helicopters, but it caused disruption on Monday and no flights came or went from the islands.

Sunday 27th July:

Carn Leh - Old Town, reflecting in the still water

Carn Leh Porth

Monday 25th July:

No movements on the runways today! The sign says "No Loitering" ...Not a problem today though!

Saturday 23rd July 2011

Glorious sunshine on my walk around Peninnis. The first couple of pictures of Porthcressa bay are a bit over exposed as the sun was right in the camera, but the 3rd one of Old Town was the other way, so the clear blue sky is much more visible.

Saturday, 23 July 2011

Guest Email of Thanks

----- Original Message -----
From: Gillian Scott
To: Bell Rock Hotel
Sent: Friday, July 22, 2011 5:53 PM
Subject: Re: Bell Rock Hotel

Dear Mr Lawson,
Thank you for a lovely holiday at the Bell Rock Hotel. The service was excellent and our room was very clean and comfortable.
We found the location ideal, very close to the beaches, shops and the bus route.
The sea was beautiful but rather too cold for swimming and so the hotel pool was a welcome treat and was very warm. It would be good if it could be open for a little longer into the evening as we sometimes found there wasn't time for a swim after a full day out.
Paul's boat trips were great and we saw all the other islands. We were lucky enough to see some puffins on the way to St Agnes before they disappear later in the month.
We hope to return to Scilly again soon.
Jill and John Scott.

***Daniel's Reply***

Dear Mr & Mrs Scott,

Thank you for your kind words, and I'm pleased you had an enjoyable stay here. I shall pass your comments to Paul also. The Puffins are just about to leave, so you timed it just right to see them.

I shall discuss your comments about the swimming pool with the proprietors. The reasons for the 6pm closure of the pool is due to the dinner service commencing, and also chemicals are regularly added to the pool at this time.

Kind regards,


Thursday, 21 July 2011

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor

“Very Impressed”

Reviewed 20 July 2011

Very well maintained Hotel. Staff & Food excellent.
Usually go for 4 Star accomodation but booked here due to other peoples recommendations. Can't believe this is only rated as 2star as much better than a lot of 4 star establishments.
Most enjoyable stay - would highly recommend.

Stayed July 2011, travelled as a couple

Monday, 18 July 2011

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor

“Everything you could ask for and more”

Reviewed 17 July 2011

This was our first visit to the Isles of Scilly and it proved a memorable week both as a consequence of the superb location but also because of the excellent hotel. From the warm and friendly greeting on arrival, to the first view of our spotless Room 2 overlooking the bay, through to our departure five days later I can only speak in positives.
Though not large and with some low beams, our room was well furnished and the bed was particularly comfortable. Washing and toilet faciliites were quite adequate.
The entire hotel has a comfortable, relaxed feel and is maintained with great attention to detail and impressive cleanliness.
All the staff were always friendly and courteous with a genuine desire to offer any assistance required. This was very evident at breakfast and dinner where the service was punctual but not obtrusive. The menu changed daily and the food was presented attractively and of an excellent quality.
Though not a criticism amd only a minor point it would have been appreciated if coffee could have been offered at table rather than in the communal lounge. Whilst very happy to share pleasantries, not all guests feel the need to impose themselves on others after dinner.
We found Paul Hicks visits over breakfast in the morning to discuss boat trips for the day helpful and informative. We also appreciated his willingness to recommend another provider when he could not meet our needs.
The hotel can be justly proud of its high rating. Certainly, when we visit Scilly again as surely we must, it is to the Bell Rock Hotel that we will turn.

Stayed July 2011, travelled as a couple

Friday, 15 July 2011

Thursday 14th July 2011

I went for a walk around the Garrison in the afternoon, and took a few pictures. Beautiful day!

Thursday, 14 July 2011

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor (Plus footnote comments from me)

“A loo with a view!”

Reviewed 13 July 2011

We stayed in Room 2 at the top of the stairs with sea views both sides of the building - a lovely room. Hotel is wonderful - clean, comfortable, very friendly staff, gorgeous food, lovely swimming pool. Very reasonable rates too. Great location too, just outside the main town area.
A recent reviewer liked the daily visits from a boatman - we found them rather too "in your face" at the breakfast table and difficult to decline. We felt it would have been much more appropriate for him simply to announce where he was planning to visit that day and to ask interested customers to see him in the lounge.
Thank you for a super holiday.

Room Tip: Book early (12 months!) - be flexible with dates
Stayed July 2011, travelled with friends


***Footnote From Daniel***

I'm really pleased you enjoyed your stay here, and that Room 2 was comfortable for you. I think Mr & Mrs Prince have started something here with the "Loo with a View" comment! This comment was first labelled to Room 18, rather than room 2 which has a different view (the back of the hotel & Buzza Hill). I guess, if you leave the bathroom door open, you can see out the front window over towards Tresco, but it would depend on how relaxed you are with your fellow traveller!!
The comments about Paul are a first I've heard. It worried me, so this morning I kept an ear out during breakfast service whilst he was there. I have to say that he was chatting pleasantly to the guests, and offering advice to a couple of them when informed that they weren't going boating and staying on St Mary's instead, which was gratefully received. He didn't appear pushy in any way. I shall however, pass on this observation so that he is aware.

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Sunday 10th July 2011 - Bryher

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor

“Another lovely holiday”

Reviewed 11 July 2011

This is an excellent hotel. Good food and comfort but above all it is extremely friendly - both the staff and guests genuinely appear to like one another and talk to one another.
The daily visits by Paul Hicks the boatman are a bonus as his trips are also excellent.
We shall return again.

Stayed June 2011, travelled as a couple

Monday, 11 July 2011

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor

“What a Gem!”

Reviewed 9 July 2011

We couldn't believe that this hotel was rated as "2 stars". It is better than a lot of 4 star hotels that we have stayed in. It was spotlessly clean. The staff were friendly and very helpful. It was run so efficiently that it was so easy to sit back and enjoy a relaxing holiday, without any hindrance or worries. There was a good choice of food on the menus and well presented and delicious! If we were to go back to the Scilly Isles again we would definitely stay at the Bell Rock Hotel.

Stayed July 2011, travelled as a couple