The Green House is a breath of clean, fresh air for Bournemouth’s hotel scene. They claim to be the greenest hotel in the UK and one could well believe it. The Green House’s emphasis on sustainability and all things eco-friendly whilst remaining impeccably stylish is an impressive feat.
Fabulous wooden floors from sustainable sources; carpets from 100% sheep’s wool from up the road in Salisbury; beautifully reclaimed Victorian roll top baths; filtered water not bottled; intelligent lighting; Liberty & Green toiletries; solar panels and a CHP unit meaning they produce extra electricity and sell it back to the grid – the list goes on with an attention to detail that could only come from the dedication of a true eco-enthusiast.
The great worry of course, when there is so much focus on all of this is whether or not it’s actually much cop as a hotel. It is. The beds are eminently comfortable (made in the UK by Hypnos with all natural materials since you ask) and the rooms are beautifully decorated with wallpaper by St Martin’s design students alongside eco-paint from Farrow & Ball.
And the food is fantastic. There’s a new chef called Gordon on the block. Gordon Jones, previously with The Royal Crescent in Bath, is running the kitchen at the hotel’s restaurant and is producing some seriously good cooking. Alongside the A la Carte Menu, he offers a six course tasting menu which draws on a wide range of local, seasonal and organic ingredients of the very highest quality. On our visit Jones and his small team delivered a powerful range of flavours, combining classical techniques with flair and ambition. The tasting menu kicked off with a delicate Jerusalem Artichoke veloute that had some chorizo (yes, from the UK) chunks to give it some extra punch. It was a brilliant start to the meal, light but full of flavour. Pigeon eggs were new to me; scrambled into an emulsion and served with an outrageously good black pudding. A perfectly cooked piece of salmon judiciously left to shine with simple spring flavours was outstanding, as was an excellent citrus tart with feather light pastry to finish. This restaurant creates excellent dishes and if there’s any justice it will be full every night. For the faint hearted, there are plenty more conventional choices on the menu, either way it is highly recommended. And keep an eye out for Gordon the kitchen hotshot, part deux.
With summer just around the corner, The Green House is in a perfect location for a weekend by the sea; just a 2-minute stroll from the cliff walk down to the beach. Take a picnic and hire one of the beach huts for the day to enjoy ‘the English Riviera’ in all its sunburnt glory. It’s well placed for conference goers too and no doubt an infinitely more enjoyable experience than many of the tired hostelries in the area. For a boutique beach break with a conscience, The Green House is hard to beat – it’s a little slice of guilt-free luxury.
Doubles from £140