Love children and surfing? Then this Newquay hotel is for you…

Love children and surfing? Then you’ll have a ball at the family friendly Esplanade hotel in Newquay, says the Inspector

  • The Inspector pays £255 for dinner on a Saturday night, bed and breakfast
  • He dines at the hotel’s Cove restaurant, where he finds prices are ‘reasonable’ 
  • Remember, the Inspector pays his way… and tells it like it is

Surfers are out in force on a bleak Sunday morning. The cloud is so low that it’s hard to distinguish between sea and sky — but the swell is impressive and clearly inviting for those who love nothing more than catching a wave.

‘My husband’s out there somewhere,’ says our tanned and bubbly waitress at breakfast. She would fit in fine in Malibu. But Newquay is far more interesting than that moneyed Californian honey-pot — and right now North Cornwall is on a roll, its reputation growing as an all-year holiday destination. Which explains why, at the end of November, every room is taken at The Esplanade, overlooking the famous Fistral Beach.

But don’t come here as a couple looking for a quiet romantic break. The place is awash with children having the time of their lives. There is even a soft play area beside the open-plan bar and restaurant, plus table football — and there’s a cinema and indoor pool, too.

One of the rooms at the Esplanade hotel in Newquay. The Inspector finds that there’s a ‘surfing theme’ to his room

The hotel overlooks the famous Fistral Beach (pictured) and guests pay extra for rooms with a sea view

You pay extra for rooms like ours with a sea view. We are paying £255 for dinner on a Saturday night, bed and breakfast. There’s a surfing theme to the room, with a long wooden headboard and artwork showing boisterous seas spilling onto sandy beaches.

There must be a family room above ours, judging by the noise of little ones leaping from their bunk beds. No complaints from us — the website makes clear the emphasis is on families. 

If you’re looking for adults-only, then The Esplanade’s sister hotel, the Fistral Beach, a couple of hundred yards along the coast, is the answer. But we note with some relief that there is an adults-only bar called Elements, which opens at 7pm. We get there at 7.03pm.

Pictured is the hotel’s Cove restaurant, where wines are served by the carafe as well as by the bottle and glass

The exterior of the Esplanade. The Inspector says that the hotel is ‘awash with children having the time of their lives’

Pictured is the harbour in Newquay, which is becoming an ‘all-year holiday destination’, according to the Inspector 

Dinner at Cove restaurant is something of a riot as children rush about. ‘Eat some more of your chips and then you can . . .’ says one mother, but before she can finish her sentence the two sprogs in her charge have raced off.

We enjoy our pan-fried cod and pork belly — and wines are served by the carafe as well as by bottle or glass. The prices are reasonable, with burgers starting at £17 and pizzas £13.

The hotel houses the Quiksilver Surf School and guests get a special rate. So if you have children and also love surfing, you won’t go wrong here. In fact, you’ll have a ball.  


The Esplanade, Esplanade Road, Newquay, Cornwall, TR7 1PS.

For more information call 01637 873333, or visit

Prices for double rooms start from £120.


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