The Gallivant, Rye

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The Gallivant is your perfect weekend hideaway. This former 60s motel has turned chic bistro and comes complete with the motto ‘eat, sleep, beach’. And that’s just what we did.

Reflective of its beachside location the interiors are coastal chic and there is a distinct peaceful and chilled vibe. Think Californian motel with a rustic British twist. There’s an upcycled driftwood bar and a neutral pastel colour scheme throughout which is livened up with statement retro kitsch pieces.

This place is about unwinding and taking life at a slower pace. On top of cosy sheepskin throws and a good selection of board games there is a glorious roaring fire to snuggle up next to. The complimentary sloe gin by reception is an added draw – as is the honesty bar larder which stocks everything from champagne to popcorn. Need I say more?

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Food. Now this is where this place gets really good.

Afternoon tea, which is included in your room rate, is served at 4pm and involves as much homemade cake and tea as you wish to enjoy. Perfect after a breezy stroll along the beach.

Dinner was, as expected, just bloody delicious and as fancy as the menu may appear, it’s unpretentious. Everything from the service to the bistro atmosphere is relaxed. The indulgent menu leaves you with no option but to indulge – it would be rude not to.

As you might expect with the restaurants reputation and its prestigious chefs there is a big focus on local, seasonal and high quality dishes. With 95% of ingredients sourced from fishermen and farmers working within 15 miles, the menu really reflects the local area. The local ethos continues with the wine list – all of their sparkling wines are from English vineyards.

If you haven’t already gathered, The Gallivant is a foodie’s heaven. Plan your stay or dinner date to catch one of the visiting michelin star chefs or Rioja evenings. You won’t be disappointed.

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Staying here feels like the only sensible option and with rooms like these, you’d be foolish not to. The bedrooms are spot on – comfy and cosy with big tubs, marble sinks and Noble Isle products.

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Food heaven continues in the morning with a continental breakfast that comes complete with a DIY bloody mary ‘recovery station’. The cooked breakfast menu offers extra treats to fulfil every breakfast need.

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The location of The Gallivant is an added bonus – just two minutes away is 5 miles of sandy beaches, fresh air and dog walking heaven. Even on a pretty stormy day Camber Sands offered the perfect adventure to walk off all of those foodie sins (and easter eggs).

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Nearby Rye is full of pretty cobbled streets, Georgian architecture, independent traders, antiques and boutiques. Wrap up and go and explore. Also worth a visit is Dungeness, a shingle wilderness which is scattered with abandoned boats and ramshackle cottages. It’s pretty cool, if not a little eerie, especially as a storm was brewing.

Just over an hour from London, The Gallivant is the perfect place to unwind (and eat) and I think it would be extremely difficult to have a bad time here. Just remember your wellies and waterproofs if you’re thinking of visiting before the summer months!

Find out more at The Gallivant.

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