checking in | 24 hours in eastbourne
We don’t know about you, but we’re loving discovering more of the gems a little closer to home right now. When photographer and blogger Emma Croman was invited to stay at the new Port hotel in Eastbourne, we asked her to give us the low down on the best places to visit while she’s there. Here are her top tips…
Having passed the immersive views of Seven Sisters and Beachy Head you roll down the hill into the town the view and the way the light hits it is so special. Joining the road at the seafront you are may with abundant ferns and palms and something else you can’t quite put your finger on. This is Eastbourne, long with a reputation for being a destination for older folk. Boasting one of the UK’s cleanest seafronts, Eastbourne is fast becoming a hub of creativity with many independent businesses popping up. Possibly the special light in this seaside town is a source of inspiration, or perhaps it’s the rolling hills and space that surround it.
It’s easy to overlook what’s on our doorstep – we long for a holiday, a break. Far-flung places that offer us a reset. But there’s so much opportunity for a reset locally. The simple act of booking a night in a hotel and taking yourself for a date or going with a partner or friend can feel like the best of mini holidays without the stress of travelling. Running a roll-top bath, fluffy white towels, ironed bedding. What a treat.
In celebration of what Eastbourne is offering, and for the opening of the beautiful Port hotel that is receiving a lot of press, I (blogging on TIDE) went for a stay to check out what Eastbourne offers in a 24 hour stay – craft beer bars, charity shops, treasure troves of bookshops, creative classes, walks on the hills, picking along the beach when the tide is out making you feel like you’re in Cornwall. All in the name of research of course.
Thanks to Port for the nights stay to make the article possible.
Take a walk along one of Eastbourne’s incredible viewpoints. Beachy Head is always a winner with views across to Birling Gap and Eastbourne. There’s also the lesser-known Butt’s Brow (pictured below) – this lovely point across the Down’s will provide a choice of routes with varying lengths.
There are so many great, independent businesses popping up in Eastbourne so you’ll be spoiled for choice wandering around the streets – grab a sandwich and a coffee at DOC before heading to Little Chelsea and Grove Road to pick around the charity shops and Indies. I challenge you to not get lost in a world of dusty books in Camilla’s after cooing over the parrot who is resident. Pop into Bottle Grove (pictured below) for a bit of beer and ale buying from the passionate souls that run it.
After you’re done with shops head on over to the other side of town where you can check out Volt Collective and then onto the famous Towner Gallery to get your art fix. If you’re organised enough you can even book a pottery class at the Devonshire Collective.
Check into Port – designed with simplicity in mind, this new addition to Eastbourne is making waves. Flick on the HAY kettle, get the bath going and order room service from their menu of locally sourced food, or if it’s a balmy evening dine on the terrace and walk off the amazing food along the beach opposite if you caught it when the tide is out – a spectacular and peaceful way to spend half an hour or so. Sink into the carefully selected beds and if you went all out and booked the apartment spin some of the vinyl that comes with the room. If you’re not staying at Port you can still book a table on their terrace so soak up the last of the light.
If you fancy venturing out elsewhere check out Skylark restaurant with a pleasingly succinct menu of local fare. Then when done take a detour to Levels Bottle Store for a nightcap before heading back to the hotel along the beach at sunset. Levels also do wine tasting evenings featuring many local wines.
In my opinion, you won’t find a better breakfast than the hash with an egg at Port (pictured below). Enjoy it on the terrace or in the dining room with a lovely coffee before heading out for a long walk along Hopewell Beach – catch the tide out and you can walk all the way to the lighthouse. It’s a corker of walk and you can return along the top – find more about this walk here.