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

Friday, 31 August 2012

Face in the Sky

Thursday 30th August 2012

Walking home from work at 9pm there was a really vivid face in the sky that reminded me of the face on the Turks Head sign. It changed a bit by the time I got my phone out, but you can still get the gist of it

Porth Hellick & Ducks!

Thursday 30th August 2012

A long walk this afternoon right round St Mary's on the roads, but cutting through Kitty Down to take in the view across to Porth Hellick

Buzza & Town Beach

Wednesday 29th August 2012

A short walk up Buzza Tower and back down to the strand to watch the harbour for a bit

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Garrison in the Sun

Tuesday 28th August 2012

A short walk up to the Garrison in the afternoon to take in the warmth of the sun.

Monday, 27 August 2012

St Martins

Sunday 26th August 2012

St Martins FĂȘte day, and so, I took the opportunity to take a walk up to the St Martins Daymark. The clouds came over after lunch unfortunately but it was still a nice walk. I saw a kestrel hovering looking for prey. It's in one of the photos if you can spot it?!
Jude Law & Gary Kemp were at the fĂȘte, but I shall respect their privacy and not post a paparazzi shot!

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Around the Garrison

Saturday 25th August 2012

A breezy day today, but a lovely afternoon for a walk none the less. Not far today though, with just a stroll around the Garrison.

Friday, 24 August 2012

St Mary's Harbour & Porthmellon

Friday 24th August 2012

A drizzly start to the day with a bit of travel disruption. This afternoon however turned out 99% better. I say 99% as I went for a walk in the glorious sunshine and got caught in the one short sharp drizzly shower! It then remained fine until another around 5pm.

I took a walk up the strand to take in the harbour and then over the hill to Porthmellon. The tide was quite low today.

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Guest Email of Thanks

----- Original Message -----
To: Bell Rock Hotel
Sent: Tuesday, August 21, 2012 8:30 PM
Subject: Re: Bell Rock Hotel

Dear Mr. Lawson,

I am very pleased to say that we thoroughly enjoyed our brief visit to The Scillies. We found the Bell Rock Hotel very comfortable,the food and the service were excellent. The staff were courteous and helpful. Our room was spotlessly clean and quite to our satisfaction. Our only regret was that we couldn't stay longer. We are resolved to return in the near future and are strongly recommending you to our friends!

Yours sincerely,

Peter Belward.

Guest Email of Thanks

----- Original Message -----
From: KENNETH offer
To: Bell Rock Hotel
Sent: Wednesday, August 22, 2012 1:01 PM
Subject: Thanks

Dear Daniel and Staff,

Just a note to say that we arrived home after a good journey at approx. 11.15 a.m. We wish to thank you all for a very enjoyable and luxurious stay, we appreciate all the hard work that goes into making our holiday so good. Please pass on our good wishes to all and we hope to see you all again next year.

Yours sincerely from your friends { we hope } at room 14 Barbara and Ken Offer

Guest Email of Thanks

----- Original Message -----
From: "Ann Pearce"
Sent: Sunday, August 19, 2012 9:31 PM
Subject: Thank you

> Dear Daniel and staff
> Have just returned from a week in St Mary's and although we don't
> normally send or post reports of our holidays we feel moved to do so this
> time. Our visit to the Isles of Scilly was part of the celebrations of
> our 40th wedding anniversary this year and having no pre conceived idea
> of what we would find on our first visit to the islands were warmed by
> the friendly atmosphere in the hotel, the smiles and professional
> approach from the staff, the variety of dishes on the menu and the size
> of the breakfast to set you up for the day. Our room suited us fine with
> everything one would need to make a stay away from home enjoyable and
> relaxing.
> Thank you to all for making our week enjoyable despite the changeable
> weather.
> Regards
> Ann and Phil Pearce

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor - Bell Rock Hotel, Scilly

“Very welcoming and friendly hotel”

Reviewed 22 August 2012

We stayed 4th - 11th August 2012 .We arrived early on our flight and were made very welcome. Our room was availble by 10.30 so we could enjoy the rest of the day. The room and the shower were exceptionally clean with plenty of tea & milk and toiletries provided. All staff were very friendly and helpful and nothing was too much trouble. The food was excellent with good choices with a good selection of red wines. We especially enjoyed the breakfasts being cooked to order. After the evening meal coffee was enjoyed in the bar watching the Olympics with the other guests in a very relaxed atmosphere. We will be back!

Stayed August 2012, travelled as a couple

Daniel Responded With:

Thank you for your kind words about our team of staff. I'm glad we all helped to make your holiday enjoyable. It sounds like you have enjoyed our freshly prepared meals, and indeed, our wine list. I like to keep updating our wines at least annually to offer a wide range of wines to suit all. I also try to source wines to within a reasonable price range but at the same time keeping the quality high. We look forward to seeing you return in the future. No doubt, there will be a couple of new reds on the list to try by then.

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor - Bell Rock Hotel Scilly

“Relaxing Retreat”

Reviewed 19 August 2012

This is a lovely quiet hotel located on the main island of the Scillies (St Mary's). First impression from the outside we thought it might be more for older couples however, that was not the case. Its very cosy and although the room was small it was very clean and adequate for our stay (you only really sleep in them anyway!). There were even free reusable carrier bags to use. The bed was comfy and the bathroom was extremely clean. We booked dinner and breakfast here and the food at both was excellent. The waiters and waitresses were very friendly and always had a smile. There is even a small indoor pool to use - we didnt this time but as we will definitely be going back we will try it next time. To make the most of our last day the hotel arranged to have our luggage taken to the ferry for a small fee (VERY Small fee £1.25) as the ferry didnt leave until 4.15pm we had the day to enjoy. I would recommend this hotel to anyone who wants a relaxing holiday.

Daniel Lawson, Daniel Lawson at Bell Rock Hotel, responded to this review
20 August 2012
I'm pleased you enjoyed your stay with us, and the service you received was of a high standard.
The rooms within the hotel vary in shape and size depending on where they are situated, and some have the sea views, as it seems you have had. The rooms are all viewable on my blog photo galleries. This is a good tool for guests to find out more about the hotel.

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor - Bell Rock Hotel Scilly

“Enjoyed it”

Reviewed 18 August 2012

We were at the hotel before 1 PM and the room was ready for us. Room was exceptionally clean but wanted the odd bit of glue on some of the wallpaper. The welcome/information pack was the best we have ever seen at a hotel and the tv worked as it should - all the channels being in the right place.
Unlike some places where tea and coffee is provided with just enough tea coffe and milk for one making, the tray in our room had more than ample supplies of everything and we were asked to go to reception if we needed more of anything.
Food was excellent, both breakfast and dinner were made from good fresh ingredients and well cooked. There was a good choice on the menu.
Staff are very good exceedingly friendly and wanting us to have a good holiday. However it was noticeable that the manager was not as affable as the rest of the staff and there were occasions when we felt he couldn't be bothered to say hello.
Accommodation is expensive on the Scilly Isles and taking that into account we think the Bell Rock is good value for money.

Daniel Lawson, Daniel Lawson at Bell Rock Hotel, responded to this review
20 August 2012
I'm pleased you had a good time on your holiday with us, and the staff looked after you well. I don't appear to be flavour of the month at the moment! I can only apologise if I failed to speak to you at some point. It certainly wouldn't be that I couldn't be bothered, as I wouldn't do it on purpose. Perhaps, if I was in the middle of something, I failed to spot you going by reception? Please accept my apolgies, and I hope that it wouldn't put you off returning in the future.

***Further Footnote***
I was thinking about where I'm sitting within the reception area, and it is a little set back from the opening. If I'm working on the computer, I don't always see people going past, as it's slightly out of my peripheral vision.
If people speak to me when I am unaware of passers, I always speak; so maybe I am not totally at fault here?

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Porthmellon & Harbour Evening Skies

Monday 20th August 2012

The evening was a very pleasant summer's evening, with almost clear skies and a warm sun.

Porthmellon & Porthloo

Sunday 19th August 2012

Sunday morning started off poor on the weather side of things but soon picked up for a hot & sunny afternoon. Ideal for lunch outside followed by a walk to hunt for cake!

Saturday, 18 August 2012

Sunset Scilly

Saturday 18th August 2012

The sun has just set over the islands and what a beautiful sight it was! Purples & pinks in colour in an almost pastel effect sky. Lovely.

Summer Has Returned!

Saturday 18th August 2012

After the mishap in weather over the last couple of days with wind & rain, the sun has come back, and summer has once again returned.

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor - Bell Rock Hotel St Mary's

“We will be back!!!”

Reviewed 17 August 2012
1person found this review helpful

We came back for a second time in July 2012 - we were not disappointed. Lovely informal atmosphere, spotless, comfortable rooms and bathrooms. Loads of hot water etc. Good choice of menu every evening and huge breakfasts with good quality ingredients. We were made to feel most welcome by every member of staff we met and the after-dinner sessions in the bar/lounge were great fun with all joining in. Daily visiting boatman Paul went out of his way to fix trips to suit everyone - even us old gals! Positioned between 2 beaches and near the High Street, the Bellrock cannot be beaten for location on St Marys. The Staff certainly "make" this hotel special. Well done everybody - we are definitely coming back next year.

Daniel Responded with:

The title says it all.... Thank you for your kind words. It really makes our day to hear that we have helped to make our guest's holidays an enjoyable one. We look forward to welcoming you back again.

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor - Bell Rock Hotel St Mary's

“Home from home”

Reviewed 15 August 2012
1person found this review helpful

We arrived at the hotel after traveling on the ferry across a rough sea. We were instantly made to feel welcome. The room was ready and spotless, the pool is great for the kids, towels and robes are available from reception. Breakfast is excellent and at last a hotel that is child friendly and allows me to order smoked haddock instead of a fry up without charging any extra, kippers also available as well as "proper" poached eggs. They deserve there trip advisor rating as number 1 on the island from our experience. The staff have big smiles and treated guests like family, well done. The bar is well stocked at reasonable prices. If you are visiting the island it's definitely worth a stay. We will definitely return. The beds here are very comfortable and the location of the hotel is great for exploring.

Daniel Lawson, Manager at Bell Rock Hotel, responded to this review
17 August 2012
I am pleased that we were able to accommodate your family, and that you all enjoyed your brief stay with us after a not so smooth crossing on the ship. Unfortunately, the winds have been particularly strong over the last few days, and your plan to return home by fixed wing aircraft was probably welcomed by the rest of your family.
We regularly receive compliments on our freshly cooked breakfasts (rather than bain marie/hot cabinet style) and I'm pleased you have enjoyed this service.
Thank you also for your enquiry on your return home with plans to re-visit! I hope that we can accommodate you again soon.

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor - Bell Rock Hotel St Mary's

“Cosy guesthouse feel”

Reviewed 15 August 2012 via mobile

A Small hotel generally relaxed atmosphere, with the exception of the stressy rude porter/waiter. Diffident manager. Very kind and helpful housekeeper and friendly female restaurant staff.
Bedrooms are very small.
Reception desk rarely attended.

Daniel Lawson, Manager at Bell Rock Hotel, responded to this review
17 August 2012
Thank you for your review, of which I am concerned as it appears you were not totally happy with the service you received whilst with us. It is a shame that you didn't bring to my attention any details you felt were not up to your expectations whilst actually here. Our welcome pack in every room does request this if guests have any issues, and obviously in this case I was not given the opportunity to try and rectify your grievances.
With this in mind, I would not say I am a 'diffident' person. I can only assume by that, you mean that I am not loud, brash and in guest's faces all the time, but instead prefer a more calming, considerate and courteous approach, and being there to help whenever needed.
Reception is manned daily, Monday to Saturday my myself 8am to 1pm (at least), and in the afternoons, our housekeeper has the phone (Sunday is also staffed). I am unsure what you mean as 'rarely attended'? We don't have a 'dedicated' full time receptionist as I fulfil this roll as well as being manager, with the help of my team in the afternoons and bar staff of an evening. If there is not someone on reception or bar, there is a phone on reception to buzz a staff member who will be no more than a few seconds away. Inevitably, there will be times that I am called away from reception, such as taking guests to rooms, making a coffee for a guest, or helping in the restaurant, but again not far away.
The hotel has 23 bedrooms, and is staffed by just 10 people who all multi task between departments. This helps us to keep tariff's lower, and also create consistency by helping the staff know what our guest's require throughout the hotel.


I have to follow certain guidelines when responding to reviews left on TripAdvisor. One of which is not identifying the original reviewer (if known). I do have a pretty good idea of who may have left this review, and it is a real shame they didn't alert me to any issues they had whilst here. If it is who I think, I had bent over backwards for them and managed to pull a few strings to help arrange alternative transport for them when the Scillonian III ferry was cancelled due to rough seas and strong winds. Seats on flights were like gold dust!
Talking with them, it was their first short break visit to Scilly, and I don't think the islands on the whole were what they were really expecting.
I guess sometimes you just can't please everyone!

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor - Bell Rock Hotel St Mary's

“Highly Recommended”

Reviewed 13 August 2012
2people found this review helpful

We stayed at the Bell Rock Hotel between 6th August 2012 and 13th August 2012 half board. The hotel is 2 Star but should be much higher. It is spotlessly clean, all the staff without exception were friendly and helpful and the food was excellent. The restaurant was very well staffed, well furnished and decorated. There is a great menu choice each day and a really good wine list. We have stayed at 5 star hotels around the world but have to say this hotel equals some of the best. We stayed in room 5. The rooms are not very large but perfectly adequate, the en suite is small but again perfectly functional. Daniel the Manager was very helpful and attention to detail was much appreciated. The hotel has an indoor swimming pool which is nice when the weather is bad, the hotel provides towels and robes, however the pool is the only part of the hotel that would benefit from some up dating. The hotel is ideally situated just 5 minute level walk to the quay. The prices are reasonable for the quality and level of service. We will definitely stay there again in the future.

Daniel Lawson, Manager at Bell Rock Hotel, responded to this review
17 August 2012
Thank you for your kind review. I am really pleased you enjoyed your holiday on Scilly, staying at the Bell Rock Hotel as your base to explore. Our staff have obviously left a great impression and have helped to make your stay an enjoyable one. I'm pleased you enjoyed our food and wine (it was unfortunate that weather problems delayed the special order bottle of wine I was getting for you. Hopefully someone else can enjoy it now it's finally arrived! Receiving goods on an offshore island can sometimes be problematic).
We look forward to welcoming you back again in the future.

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor - Bell Rock Hotel St Mary's

“Friendly hotel with lovely staff”

Reviewed 13 August 2012
1person found this review helpful

We stayed at this hotel because of it's fantastic reviews and certainly the welcome and friendly staff couldn't be faulted. The food was very acceptable too. As the hotel only had 1 room left when we booked, we had the smallest one I think and although it was very clean and had all the items we needed, there was nowhere to open our suitcases or put out our toiletries. The decor in the main areas could also do with a little bit of love and updating. There's probably no time to do the work as the hotel is very busy! Pricewise the hotel compares with St Mary's Hall Hotel over the road and in our opinion (as we have stayed there) the welcome beats them but we moved on to the Star Castle Hotel as this hotel didn't have a third night available and although considerably more expensive, the luxury there both in the rooms, service, views and food is in a different totally superior league. You get what you pay for on St Mary's as you do anywhere!

Daniel Lawson, Manager at Bell Rock Hotel, responded to this review
14 August 2012
Thank you for your kind words about our staff. I'm pleased that everyone made your short stay a welcome & friendly visit. We do pride ourselves on being a friendly team.
I've just been looking though our bookings, to try and determine the room you may have been in, as I'm a lttle puzzled as all bathrooms have a toiletries shelf?
Each room has a fold away luggage rack to place suitcases on to make packing and unpacking a little easier; sometimes this is in the wardrobe for storage.
It's good that you have stayed in various places to be able to make a comparison between hotels. As you say, the Star Castle is a totally different set up, and being a 4 star hotel, you would expect prices and accommodation to be comparable to that star rating. The Bell Rock is only 2 star, but regularly exceeds expectations of the star rating through our customer service, delivered by our hard working team.
Maintenance and refurbishment programmes go on during winter months, as it would be impractical during a busy season, as you point out. We have a rolling schedule of refurbishments. The restaurant was redecorated and refurnished during the 2010/2011 winter period. This winter we aim to refurbish the bar lounge.
Maybe we will be able to welcome you back again in the future. The hotel & bedrooms can be viewed on our blog website, which can help in deciding the type of room you would prefer. Booking early is always recommended if at all possible.

Guest Review Extracted From TripAdvisor - Bell Rock Hotel St Mary's

“Amazing Hotel in an Amazing Place”

Reviewed 26 July 2012
5people found this review helpful

A wonderful hotel, great staff, ideal location, excellent food, warm and friendly atmosphere, spotlessly clean,
nothing too much trouble. My 11th visit need I say more. Will be back next year, can't wait.

Daniel Lawson, Manager at Bell Rock Hotel, responded to this review
14 August 2012
There's not much I can say here, other than a big thank you! It's great that you are consistently pleased with the hotel and the service you receive. We certainly look forward to seeing you again!

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Morning Point Rough Sea

Wednesday 15th August

Stormy Seas!!