The advent of Albion House is a story of triumph over adversity, and hope over experience – or rather inexperience. Arguably the most beautiful of all of Ramsgate’s unsurpassed collection of Georgian and Regency buildings, it was rescued from neglect and is now a successful business run by Ben and Emma Irvine, who created a boutique hotel and restaurant from its shell. None had any experience of hotel-keeping but sheer hard work, determination, good humour and bravery have seen them through. Albion House, which was the subject of an episode of Alex Polizzi’s The Hotel Inspector while it was being transformed, is now the stand-out place to stay in this fascinating yet often overlooked town, and a perfect weekend getaway. There’s a huge, stylish bar, characterful restaurant, Townley’s, serving uncomplicated seasonal, locally sourced dishes, and elegant bedrooms, some with breathtaking views across the Royal Harbour. A triumph for Ben and Emma and a great address for us. Doubles from £125.
Name to Know: French head waiter, Yannick, a man with 25 years’ experience in both Paris and London. Ask him about cheese and wine pairings.
See: Go for a wondrous walk along the beach from Ramsgate to Broadstairs in just 45 minutes, you’ll be questioning how you missed the closest sandy beach to London for all this time.
Eat: Any of the delicious dishes from our menus, but a star performer and great way to kick start the metabolism is our crushed avocado with a chopped red chilli on toasted sourdough topped with crispy, streaky bacon.
Buy: From Archive on Ramsgate harbour selling beautiful gifts for the young or old. Many of Naomi’s products draw on Scandinavian inspiration.
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