A Fantastic Place to Stay

Member Rating 5 out of 5 by MichaelJM on January 14, 2009

"Number One" had been voted as England’s top B&B and had been recommended to me by a work colleague who could only claim "that they nearly once stayed here". I’d correctly assumed that it wouldn’t be busy during the Winter months and having checked out their impressive web site I rang to secure my room for the following week. The phone was promptly answered and within minutes I’d been efficiently booked into this small boutique style Bed and Breakfast. I now had to hope that it would be half decent.

As fellow travellers are aware you can never be absolutely sure what your hotel’s going to be like until you arrive at the reception desk. I’ve stayed in some fantastic places but on the other hand it’s always the crummier ones that I think of as I approach a new hotel. This was, either way going to be an experience and I was just hoping that it would not be a "typical tired" seaside B&B. It’s in the south of Blackpool town and I hailed a cab outside the station and then just sat back convincing myself that "it would be alright". The taxi driver explained that "Number One" was known to be a different type of B&B – different he explained in a good way.

The one thing that hit me was that Number one was set in a residential area and part of its uniqueness is that it is not surrounded by other B&B’s and it feels as if it’s off the beaten track and away from the hustle and bustle of Blackpool central.

I was warmly met by the owner and his wife (the roles are reversed in their sister hotel, which I’ll probably give a try next time I visit Blackpool) and she was soon apologising for the room that they’d allocated to me. I was, she explained, the last to book in and so I’d been placed in the pink room. She was swift to elaborate that all the rooms were to the same standard but this one was... She paused to get the right word. "Girly" I suggested to her. Well "no" she replied "but it is pink" Her husband made a jovial comment about "digging holes" and then the time came to check out the room in this small and cosy boutique B&B. Well it was pink with a four poster bed taking pride of place. Now I guess that you need to be comfortable with pink to rest easy in this room, as the large print curtains were complimented by matching cushions on the two easy chairs and furry cushions of the bed.
Fashion prints adorned the wall alongside "period style furniture" and I guess the decor is more appealing for the "fairer sex" but there were plenty of in-house gadgets to make the blokiest of blokes to feel comfortable. There was a CD player, DVD, Playstation, large plasma TV with a free view box and a good supply of CD’s and DVD’s available for use by guests. These were sited in a "library" at the top of the stairs and I was invited to help myself for any that I fancied.

You don’t need to be a technophobe to stay here as there are remote controls for everything including the lights. Indeed I was turning the sound down on the TV when the lights dimmed and confusion ruled for a while until I found the remote for the lighting. I soon sorted out that I was best using the FreeBox remote to handle by TV viewing as this remote did not assume control over the lights in the room.

Technology didn’t finish in the bedroom as I was soon to find out. There was a Jacuzzi bath, with a TV set into the wall at the end of the bath, and a separate "rain shower" unit in the corner. This was a bathroom to pamper yourself in and after a decent meal out I was enjoying the gentle massage of the Jacuzzi bath whilst tuning into some local TV channel. A duo of nicely presented bath robes were available for use and I quietly sat down, after my relaxing bath, to enjoy a selection of music on the CD player and enjoy one of the complimentary drinks out of the extensive selection (I had drinking Chocolate and would enjoy one of the teas in the morning). As a mark of the attention to detail there was an opportunity to take a small bottle of fresh milk out of the fridge (on the landing) rather than user the UHT milk in the small cartons. It "makes a far nicer cup of tea" the owner had explained as she invited me to make use of this facility.

If you feel the cold then they’ve though of everything as a small heater stood unobtrusively in the corner to supplement the efficient central heating. Needless to say I was warm enough and didn’t need to try it out.

This really feels like home and this 1930 Art Nouveau house, with its original stained glass windows, has been charmingly decked out by the owners who can quite rightly be proud of their B&B. The decor is striking, some may say challenging, and the ornaments and wall hangings will keep you "entertained" for the duration of your stay

Breakfast was a veritable feast and you have to pre-order your main course the night before (although that really isn’t a hardship). There’s a decent selection of cereal, fruit juices and my freshly prepared "full English" would certainly keep me going for the rest of the day. I can never resist the offer of black pudding and the sausage and bacon had a "perfect degree of crispness" that I normally only expect to guarantee at home. The egg yolk was in my opinion "spot on" and I polished off the whole meal with no difficulty. And if that wasn’t enough it was followed by toast and marmalade. A perfect start to my day.

I seldom wax lyrical about the overall standard of a hotel, but on this occasion I believe "Number One" is faultless.

Well done and I WILL BE BACK
Number One
St Lukes Road
+44 01253 343 901


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