The Penhelig Arms Aberdovey (or Aberdyfi in welsh) has an enviable position with great estuary and coastal views. It’s a hotel I’ve long wanted to visit as it has such a great position in an area that I enjoy visiting regularly. I planned the trip to the hotel to celebrate a special birthday, so was prepared to splash out a bit. Sadly though the hotel was a bit on the pricey side, so I was only able to book the cheapest standard of room.
The room did have a sea view which was excellent, but it was on the small size. As you can see there is just room for a double bed sandwiched between those two side tables. I think it might have been better to have a king size bed and have some bespoke shelving rather than using standard sized items as it did makes things feel small. I think better use could have been made of the space and built on the character of the building, if bespoke options like a built in wardrobe had been used rather than going for standard sizes, then the TV and the wardrobe could have been swapped which would have made a lot more sense and made the room seem more spacious. To my mind made to measure is the way to make the best of small spaces and it can be used to add an individual touch too.
In contrast I felt more thought had gone into making the most of the small space available for the bathroom. The fittings were good quality and there were some thoughtful touches.
Breakfast is served in the dining room. However, not all the dining area was open for guests to use at breakfast as some was made up for lunch or dinner. We ate our breakfast both days in the dining room, but the first morning we were there some guests were asked to sit in the hotel lobby for their breakfast. I wouldn’t have been very happy if that had been us as it’s essentially a hallway, even though it is an pleasant room.
The breakfast is very tasty. There’s a good range of cereals, yoghurts and fruits as well as fruit juices to serve yourself to. Then you can order a range of options from the breakfast menu from Eggs Benedict to Buttermilk Pancakes. I liked the chance to have some welsh laverbread served with my full welsh breakfast. For those not in the know, this is a sort of seaweed, and it’s more like a puree and certainly not ‘bread’, but it’s not to everyone’s taste. We didn’t eat at the hotel apart from breakfast as we were out and about exploring, so it didn’t really suit.
There is a nice bar at the Penhelig Arms with a traditional pub feel and you can visit that whether you are a guest or not. I’d recommend a pint of The Rev. James Original, which is a fine best bitter and it’s well kept here. It’s a great place to have a post dinner drink or grab a night cap before retiring to your room.
There is parking connected to the hotel, but it is quite limited and there isn’t enough for everyone. You can park just around the corner though in a paid car park and the hotel said if we did that they would refund the charge. This car park is so close by, it would still be very convenient. There is also some very limited on street parking with I think an hour’s wait time. We used this to register and unload, then found a space for the car in the hotel’s own car park. You could very easily come to the hotel by train – it is literally a minute’s walk from Penhelig station. You can walk into Aberdovey from there and if you want to explore up and down the coast, you could get back on the train. This makes it a good option for those without their own transport.
Disclosure: I paid for my own accommodation for my stay at the Penhelig Arms in June 2019.