Overlooking the delightful St. Michael’s Mount, the Mount Haven Hotel in Marazion is probably the hotel with the finest view in England. Watching the sun go down over the mount, with the rolling moors of West Penwith as a backdrop make for a mesmerising evening. Snuggling under a blanket with a gin and tonic on their terrace is an experience neither of us are likely to forget.
In a word
Fine dining with a focus on fish landed at Newlyn, and locally foraged ingredients. The menu was contemporary with some Mediterranean and Asian nuances, bringing world food to the ends of the country. With two rosettes under their belt, the restaurant delivers quality.
The hotel had guests from all over the world visiting, as well as hosting whole family groups in celebration of a birthday. The reasonable prices and unbeatable location make it a popular spot for locals, and tourists, and they offer special deals for locals wanting to enjoy a romantic break. With a choice of relaxing and deep therapies on offer, this is a must-visit for anyone looking for relaxation with an ethical conscience. All payments for therapies are donated to funding the education of street children in India.
Clean and restful, the hotel only has 19 rooms, so that it keeps its boutique charm, and personal experience. Met with a gentle waft of incense, entering Mount Haven immediately signifies something different. Aside from its mesmerising views, staff are both friendly and welcoming. Our sea facing room had an entire glass front and private balcony, which overlooked the bay of Penzance, Newlyn Mousehole & Land’s End. As we drifted off that night, we could hear the Atlantic’s song and seagulls nesting down for the night.
The lounge makes the most impressive use of light, framing the iconic Mount with an entire glass wall. It makes the lounge feel spacious, light and airy. With a locally stocked bar, and handmade cards, the provenance of Penzance is not only demonstrated through the food. As a family run hotel, Mike and Orange’s daughter works as a waitress and their daughter-in-law Clare Trevillion is one of the practitioners offering therapies.
Formerly an old coach house, the hotel walls have been painted white to continue with the light and modern feel. The character of its past still shines through in the texture and thickness of those walls, lending an echo of the past. A contemporary four poster bed themed with Klimt’s Tree of Life was the centrepiece of the room, complemented by the incredible views across to the mount.
With a power shower and a good sized bath, the memorable thing about the bathroom was its high quality toiletries, selected for their therapeutic properties. Fluffy white towels and bathrobes were provided, as well as a kettle and variety of hot drinks for the morning. Lots of wardrobe space and large, flatscreen TVs are also provided to ensure optimum comfort, and the balcony was equipped with garden furniture, making relaxing easy!
Downstairs, in the main corridor, a lot of attention is given to people who the charities have helped, as well as Sai Baba; a guru whose teachings inform Orange. The portraiture wouldn’t be out of place on the front cover of a National Geographic, and invite curiosity into the project. An eclectic mix of Indian and Asian artefacts decorate the walls of the downstairs of the hotel, giving it a retreat-like feel.
Everything was homemade, and from the 3 course evening meal through to the breakfast the next morning, carefully chosen using local producers. We started off with some delicious rosemary focaccia which was beautiful and springy, with a crunchy edge. So good, in fact, I caved in and had more: naughty bread.
Scallops in a half shell
For a starter we both had scallops with samphire and brown shrimp butter. These were characteristically sweet, as scallops are. But the samphire and brown shrimps balanced it with fresh saltiness and created an umami dish. Presented in the scallop shell and topped with microherbs, these were simple and delicious. Which resonated throughout the meal. Other starters included a crab florentine, courgette and halloumi salad, and a soufflé, but my choice was perfectly suited to me, as scallops really are my favourite thing.
I had turbot, which is fast becoming a favourite fish of mine. Fleshy, succulent and with a lovely taste, this came with crunchy asparagus, buttered samphire and some beautiful potatoes cocotte. These small potatoes were incredibly buttery and sweet, again balanced by the samphire. This was all sitting in a delicious crab velouté, which added a richness to the meal. Simple and perfect, 2 rosettes did not seem enough for this meal.
The ‘tache had lamb & lamb croquettes with dauphinoise potatoes, wilted greens and a rosemary and mint jus. This sauce sang, and brought a sweetness to the lamb. Inside the croquettes was a tender, shredded lamb with a delicate sweetness, worthy of a ‘tache twiddlin’, lip smackin’ Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.
Chocolate, chocolate and more!
When there’s a trio of chocolate on offer, then sure as eggs is eggs, I’m gonna take it. So this combo played on the three main types of chocolate, with a milk chocolate bruleé, dark chocolate sorbet and white chocolate parfait. Also there was a ganache triangle, which had a kind of eighties look. The chocolate sorbet had a bitterness that was countered when eaten with the parfait, and the bruleé had the satisfying crack n crunch of Amelié’s favourite pastime. A serious dessert for chocolate lovers, this was indulgent and well presented.
Locally sourced artisan gin, craft ales, and some of the more popular Cornish ales were all available from the bar, and the sun terrace was a good place to sit and enjoy them. We drank a prosecco with dinner that was crisp and light, and had just enough sweetness to go well with both dishes. Drinks prices reflect the hotel’s boutique, luxury status.
Having moved house in the preceding week, my shoulder had been tense, and the hours of writing I inflict on myself can give me some RSI in the wrist and forearms. Clare Trevillion, the daughter-in-law of Mike and Orange was friendly and professional and her deep tissue work left me feeling both relaxed and cared for. In fact, my back trouble had completely disappeared and I felt a few inches taller!
Clare made sure she gave me time to change and a drink afterwards to relax me. I was so relaxed I almost slept at one stage. One of the things I enjoy most about this kind of massage is how we communicate non-verbally; taps and strokes indicate changes, pressure indicates the need to breathe deeply.
After a stressful week, the stay at Mount Haven Hotel Marazion was just what I needed to unwind and feel revitalised. With luxury rooms, unrivalled views, and incredible food, it’s worth experiencing everything Mount Haven has to offer, including walking out to the Mount and having a look in its sub tropical gardens.
Run by the Trevillion family, this hotel offers accommodation and spa treatments year round, ensuring the changing seasons of Cornwall can be viewed in style!
To find out more, visit the website at mounthaven.co.uk
Mount Haven Hotel
Phone: 01736 710249
Please note that reception is open 7 days a week between 10am and 6pm