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Hotel Kemp Townhouse Hotel 5 star
Easyexperts
Brighton, United Kingdom -
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Amy Adejokun Section editor

If there exists a more exquisite property in Brighton, then please, enlighten us. The thought and attention that has been put into Kemp Townhouse is unrivalled and its refinement peerless. This small bed and breakfast oozes class and boasts arguably the finest accommodation of any boutique hotel in Brighton. Naturally enough for a B&B it doesn't have the facilities of the big boys on the sea front, however you won't find another property of this quality, and for that matter, value, from which to explore the city as a couple (this is not the place for families or groups of friends). The only problem is that most people tend to share our opinion so you'll have to book in advance if you want to experience it for yourself.

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    Location 8.93 /10

    Kemp Townhouse is tucked away on Atlingworth Street, just off of the Kemptown end of Marine Parade, a few doors down from Blanch House. Although slightly out from the centre of town, all the major attractions (the Pavilion, The Lanes, North Laines, Brighton Pier) are within 10-15 minutes on foot. Trains from the station, a 20 minute walk or 10 minute taxi ride away, serve Gatwick airport (30 mins) and London (50 mins on fast train). There are limited parking spaces available on Atlingworth Street and surrounding roads and vouchers can be bought from the hotel at a cost of £8 for 24 hours. Metered parking is available around the hotel while there is an NCP car park on High Street, just five minutes away on foot.

    Accommodation 8.20 /10

    Although having only nine rooms in total, Class and Russell have managed to come up with seven different categories of room. All rooms are similarly decorated and feature custom made furniture and fabrics from around the world including chairs with mooring loops on the back from Paris, silverware and custom made plaids from Morocco, lamps from Holland, toiletries from Cape Town and other objects from Greece and the United States. The smallest room, just 86ft², would be ideal for a 24 hour stay in Brighton for someone with not much luggage. It has a single bed with bright cushions, flatscreen television, small wardrobe, tea and coffee facilities and desk and chair, as well as a silver framed mirror and a marine photographic print, one of the hotel's leitmotivs. Next to the bed, as in all the rooms, is placed an alarm clock radio and a shell from the beach. Its bathroom is a rather small wetroom. The same goes for the small double which, again, is on the pokey side. Although it doesn't have much room for bags, it is just as beautifully presented as all the other rooms and has similar marine photographs and a complimentary decanter of port (no less). The two cosy double rooms offer more space, perfect for a weekend, and have classic motor, rather than marine, photography. The wetroom, which is larger than the others, has sensor-activated low-level blue spotlights so that your partner is not disturbed when you go to the loo in the middle of the night. The comfy king room, of which there are two, features a chunky carved Scottish Victorian wooden bed and has a 1912 German West African antelope hunting trophy on the wall. The grand king, which can be converted into a twin if necessary, has the same comforts as the other rooms, but enjoys a larger surface area and has a blocked fireplace with a silver jaguar (that's the cat, not the car) and a cross section of a gem stone on its mantelpiece. The two largest rooms are the fabulous four poster and the four poster feature. The former has the largest four poster bed in Brighton and it took seven workmen to get the mattress up to the room. It boasts a Harrods mirror, an antique Victorian mahogany chest of draws, brass candelabras from Amsterdam, a pair of binoculars and bathrobes. The feature room is so called as it has a soaking tub at the foot of the bed with a small table of potions and lotions next to it.

    Overview 7.95 /10

    As soon as Claas, the eloquent and distinguished German, comes and greets you at the door, you'll know what sort of ship he and Russell run. You'll be taken straight to your room and checked in, as is often the case in small B&Bs, for lack of a reception proper. A sign of the keen eye for detail and contemplation of the couple lie on the jar of good old fashioned humbugs in a traditional sweet jar on the sideboard in the lobby, above which hangs a painting of a young English Victorian sea captain which was bought by Claas' parents, specialists in English nautical antiques, 50 years ago at auction and subsequently given to the couple as a moving in present. The hotel is a very quiet property with no traffic pollution and the owners prefer to keep it that way. For this reason, only well-behaved dogs are allowed in the hotel and no children are not accepted either (over 18s only). There is business centre, however if you bring your laptop you can access the complimentary wifi throughout the hotel. If celebrating a special occasion at the hotel several extras are available such as champagne, wine, flowers and chocolates or even entire hampers - just ask about this before your arrival. The hotel is absolutely spotless and we challenge you to find any sign of wear and tear in the public areas which are so immaculately maintained.

    Food and drink 7.45 /10

    The hotel has a lounge come restaurant where it serves both a continental and cooked breakfast daily between 8am and 10am (9am and 11am on weekends). Breakfast is included in the room rate and there is no extra charge for having it in your room. The room itself is painted in a striking nuance of teal, broken up with white detail including painting-less picture frames (prompting jokes about a great art robbery), a working marble fireplace complete with silver bust and the marvelous bay window. At one end of the room is a distinguished-looking buffet cabinet filled with exquisite tableware while on the wall next to this are a couple of paintings, one by an up and coming American artist and another by Russell's grandmother who once exhibited at the Royal Academy. At the centre of the room is a round table with a bowl of apples and a beautiful silver water jug and glasses. Along one wall is a La Fibule white leather banquette while the chairs the other side of the tables are the same found in the rooms. The magnificent chrome chandelier, which came all the way from New York, completes the room, which must be the most elegant of breakfast rooms in Brighton.

    To know

    The 1864 Victorian listed building in which the hotel is housed was purpose built as Mary Pearson's Guest House and remained an old fashioned guest house up until the moment Class and Russell opened Kemp Townhouse in June 2008. The couple has gone to great lengths to make sure that every aspect of the hotel is perfect, from testing countless types of pillow and towels to ordering custom made objects for all the rooms from all over the world. The hotel appeared on a Channel 5 series with Nick Jones of Soho House where the entrepreneur advised the couple on how the hotel could be improved and the pricing structure was subsequently changed.

    Equipment

    • Internet access
    • Air conditioning

    advantage

    • Sumptuous décor
    • Friendly owners
    • Location
    • Attention to detail

    disadvantages

    Traveller Reviews

    • Overall Score -/10
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