A cosy beamed pub is the warm heart of this hotel, in the shelter of wooded, red sandstone cliffs that reminded the young Queen Victoria of 'a ballet or a play where nymphs appear'. Designed by owner Lana de Savary, sea-view rooms and suites, at the inn and in former fishermen's cottages, have a cool beachside chic, some with a balcony or terrace for seal-watching. Welcoming touches include complimentary sloe gin on arrival, an espresso machine, chocolate and biscuits. Most luxurious are the blue-and-white 'beach hut' doubles and suites, with king-size bed, a waterfall shower or a bath and walk-in shower, bifold doors on to a decking area, music system, mini-fridge, under-floor heating. You can dine on pub classics and more sophisticated fare – pan-roasted venison haunch steak with juniper jus, say, or steak, ale and mushroom pie; Lyme Bay lobster or a pint of prawns and beer-battered Brixham fish with hand-cut chips; wild mushroom and spinach risotto. Spa use for residents is £25. Blissful days can be spent in sheltered coves, walking the South West Coast Path or the surrounding downs, spotting roe deer and buzzards.