You Can Sleep in a Pub on Your Next UK Vacation — Here's How to Book
There's vacationing in the U.K., and then there's spending a night in a pub in the U.K. — and thanks to the destination's niche, under-the-radar rental site for pub stays, the latter is now easier than ever.
Stay in a Pub is like Airbnb, but for U.K. pubs with on-site accommodations. It's the brainchild of founder and director Paul Nunny, a U.K. beer-industry veteran who launched the platform in 2013. While novel, the idea of sleeping in a pub is hardly new. The practice dates back to the 1100s and was the norm under King Henry VII, when alehouses, inns, and taverns became known collectively as public houses, then pubs.
Centuries later, the pub-stay trend is only growing. With that in mind, here are seven cozy pub accommodations to consider for your next U.K. vacation.
1. Crab & Boar, Newbury, Berkshire
Crab & Boar is a traditional country pub in bucolic West Berkshire. The charming hangout, with farm-fresh ingredients and cozy leather sofas and booths, offers similarly chic accommodations (think four-poster beds, private hot tubs, and a slew of welcome treats). The pub serves its award-winning ales just 20 minutes from Hampshire's Highclere Castle, the 5,000-acre estate known for its contemporary role as the Downton Abbey backdrop.
2. The Bell, Ticehurst, East Sussex
The Bell in Ticehurst is the definition of idyllic. Just stepping into this charming, farmhouse-chic haunt, with its book-lined walls and rustic wood digs, feels like strolling onto a movie set. The nationally recognized pub, a one-hour train ride south of London, is known for its utterly calm vibes and slow-cooked, seasonal bites prepared with local fare. The pub's relaxing atmosphere extends to its seven bedrooms, where handmade mattresses, in-room coffee, and soft cookies provide the perfect English welcome.
3. The Devonshire Arms, Pilsley, Derbyshire
Local is the name of the game at The Devonshire Arms at Pilsley, a pub and country house nestled in the undulating Derbyshire Peak District. The food and drinks are about as fresh as it gets, with cask ales brewed in the Derbyshire countryside and fare grown not just locally, but in some cases on the property itself. Sleek yet inviting rustic character fills each of the pub's 13 bedrooms. Room sizes vary from petite inn accommodations to the ultra-luxe four-poster farmhouse rooms, each designed by the Duchess of Devonshire.
4. Black Ivy, Bruntsfield, Edinburgh
The bright, colorful Black Ivy property lies minutes from Edinburgh's top attractions, including the historic Edinburgh Castle and hilltop Arthur's Seat. Black Ivy's 21 bespoke bedrooms boast cheery décor, with cozy bedding, flavored tea, and spacious en-suite bathrooms. Over in the pub, the real fun begins. Black Ivy's craft brews and artisan cocktails impress even the most talented mixologists, while the hearty Sunday roasts guarantee no guest goes home hungry.
5. The Counting House, London, England
Just a half-mile north of the London Bridge, The Counting House offers quaint and historic pub accommodations right in the heart of London. A former 19th-century bank, the property lures patrons with charming digs, an award-winning beer roster, and some of the best handmade pies in the city. Its 15 bedrooms are just as impressive, with a stylish, modern aesthetic and spacious accommodations.
6. The Three Hills, Bartlow, Cambridge
Just outside Cambridge, The Three Hills blends traditional English-pub coziness with upscale, modern designs. The lauded pub serves Michelin Plate-accredited cuisine, with fresh ingredients at the heart of every meal — be it Sunday roast or a fish-and-chips lunch. Luxury continues well into the pub's six guest rooms, where goose-down duvets, Nespresso coffee machines, and complimentary beverages await.
7. The Rashleigh Arms, St. Austell, Cornwall
Set along the craggy Cornwall coast, The Rashleigh Arms is one of the U.K.'s most charming pub stays. The pub was built atop the foundations of old clay cellars in the 1850s. It has long served as a staple in this quaint Cornish fishing village. Fresh-caught seafood is the backbone of the pub's rotating menu, and the 18 guest bedrooms dazzle with their own English charm, from the Charlestown Harbor views to the bright coastal-chic décor.