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One of the best examples of modern Welsh hospitality, a carefully created coastal hotel that is cool, classy and contemporary. Great views and real food at a lovely harbourside location. A refreshing mixture of styles– cosmopolitan, modern, maritime and metropolitan.

Aberaeron’s harbourside is a sight not often seen in Wales, a Georgian-inspired cluster of dwellings painted all the colours of the rainbow. And there, at the entrance, is the most striking of them all. The Harbourmaster – forgive the pun – continues to make waves on Wales’s hospitality scene. The Grade II listed building once controlled the harbour traffic.
It is now an iconic hotel and restaurant – star of many ‘the best hotel’ write-ups in the national press – that has emphatically thrown away the old rule book written in the days of the dinner gong and lukewarm baths. The style brings a dash of cool, contemporary style to a fine old building, with a colour palette that echoes the famous picture-postcard perfect exteriors of the maritime architecture. It’s an hotel in the modern idiom – clean, chic and unfussy – that hasn’t forgotten its roots. The ever-smiling Dai Morgan is your ever present and dynamic host.

The bedrooms, complete with state-of-the-art bathrooms and all those little (and big) touches of luxury, are finished in the colours of the sea, sky and sunsets. The Harbourmaster’s roots show through in other ways too. Welsh and English blend naturally in conversations in the bar and on the menus. And the outstanding food comes with a distinctly local flavour – try the local Welsh beef or daily caught fresh seafood – in well-balanced dishes that again reflect today’s tastes.

There are thirteen rooms spread over three elegant Georgian harbour-side buildings, including seven in the former Harbourmaster’s residence, with our favourite, the sought-after, double aspect attic ‘Madona’ Suite. The to-die-for Aeron Queen suite with its panoramic ocean views, has graced the pages of many a lifestyle glossy, or add in the extra space and convenience of their gorgeous self-catering cottage, just metres away from the main building ( the pink one, two doors down ), with two en-suite doubles and a single room with the harbour in touching distance.

Aberaeron is justifiably bustling in the summer, but out of season it is even better. It is a special place to watch the sun set on Cardigan Bay with a pint or a cracking cappuccino after a life-affirming Coastal Path wander to New Quay and Llangrannog. Add the Harbourmaster to your bucket list now.

Welsh Rarebits

Welsh Rarebits are a million miles removed from the bland, corporate, soulless places run by the big boys of the so-called hospitality industry. So what makes a Welsh Rarebit? They're all different. Very different - everything from traditional country houses to cutting edge boutique boltholes, luxury spas to historic inns. We look at things like comfort, attention to detail, food, decor and all those small touches that add up to so much, separating the best from the rest.
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