We do like to be beside the seaside!

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We do like to be beside the seaside!

Zuzana Kasparova stays at The Green House Hotel, Bournemouth, one of the best 'eco-friendly' hotels in the country

With its stunning beaches, tranquil gardens and diverse array of fun activities for all ages, Bournemouth has long been a popular seaside destination.
With its stunning beaches, tranquil gardens and diverse array of fun activities for all ages, Bournemouth has long been a popular seaside destination.

With its stunning beaches, tranquil gardens and diverse array of fun activities for all ages, Bournemouth has long been a popular seaside destination.

Now it can also add “eco-conscious” to the list, after one of its luxury boutique hotels recently picked up a prestigious award.

The Green House Hotel, situated on the East Cliff, scooped Best Green Hotel at the Conde Nast Johansens Awards for Excellence earlier this year and has been listed by critics as a top wedding or bar mitzvah venue.

As someone who cares about the environment, I wanted to see for myself how staying green can combine with providing a luxury experience – and I have to say I was pleasantly surprised.

We arrived at the beautiful Victorian mansion, located right in the heart of Bournemouth and only two minutes’ walk from the beach – and found ourselves amazed by the thought that has been put into making this hotel eco-friendly.

Everything from the carpets and furniture, through to wall tiles and the smallest details like toiletries and stationery come from UK or local producers, or from recycled materials.

Even the hotel’s company car runs on the cooking oil they’ve used in the kitchen!

Once we settled into our rooms, we made our way over to Arbor, a fabulous 2-rosette restaurant, where we enjoyed a three- course meal using seasonal ingredients from locally sourced, organic and Fairtrade products.

The Green House Hotel in Bournemouth scooped Best Green Hotel at the Conde Nast Johansens Awards for Excellence earlier this year

Our starter was a delicious and well-balanced parsnip soup, perfect for warming up after a rainy day and preparing us for the main meal, a beautifully-presented and mouth-watering roast squash, spinach and cheese pie, topped with crunchy seeds and wholegrain mustard cream sauce.

We savoured every mouthful of this hearty, yet intricate plate of food. Feeling already indulged, how could we resist the sumptuous vanilla cheesecake with mango ice cream and banana fritter? Pure heaven.

Only a short walk from the hotel is the Russell-Cotes Gallery and Museum, one of the must-see places in Bournemouth and a real gem for anyone who loves art.

We spent the whole morning admiring this extraordinary collection of British paintings and sculptures, as well as souvenirs from around the world and absorbed a guided tour of the gallery given by one of the very knowledgeable volunteers.

After a warming cup of tea in the gallery café and a bit of shopping in their unique gift shop, we headed out to explore Bournemouth’s famous sandy beaches and walked past the fabulous Oceanarium, where young and old can marvel at all types of marine life, as well as the town centre, which is full of buzzing cafes, shops and restaurants.

Bournemouth is of course also home to a sizeable Jewish community, with synagogues catering for orthodox and reform visitors, as well as kosher sections in most major supermarkets.

The hotel boasts Arbor, a 2-rosette restaurant offering seasonal and organic dishes

As we walked on through the town, we noticed the sun desperately trying to break through the clouds, but Storm Brian ensured the best place for us to go next was a cosy little café on the promenade, where we enjoyed a delicious hot chocolate, away from the raging wind and rain!

And yet, despite the inclement weather, there was still something so very charming about being here in Bournemouth. Yes, we really do like to be beside the seaside – in all weathers!

Zuzana enjoyed a stay at The Green House Hotel in Bournemouth, Dorset. Use discount code JNEWS15 to receive a 15% discount on your booking. Details: thegreenhousehotel.co.uk.

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