Seaside Delights on the Cornish Riviera
An old yachting refuge, the once-dilapidated Hotel Tresanton has been reclaimed and reborn under the design-savvy auspices of new owners to become the best place to stay in this newly fashionable southwestern edge of Britain.
Here on the Roseland Peninsula on Cornwall’s temperate south coast in the picturesque and unspoiled fishing village of St. Mawes, Olga Polizzi (scion of England’s most famous hotel dynasty, the Fortes) and her family have created a boutique hotel with a nautical motif, featuring breezy terraces, gorgeous views, and a simple but superb restaurant specializing in local ingredients with wisps of Mediterranean influence (one of the hotel’s many aspects reminiscent of seaside resorts much farther south).
This is the only place to be in Cornwall for Sunday lunch. The Tresanton can also plan your getaway picnic to the quiet coves and deserted beaches of the nearby Lizard Peninsula (the southernmost point in England and one of its most beautiful). Sail there on the family’s 48- foot Pinuccia, the sloop-rigged racing yacht originally commissioned by the Italian publisher Rizzoli for the 1939 World Cup.
Another worthy destination is Padstow’s famed The Seafood Restaurant. The friendly little port of Padstow is one of Cornwall’s oldest towns (founded in the 6th century) and quaint enough to attract stopovers by those en route to Land’s End, but the devotees who book here months in advance hardly stumble upon this much-lauded eatery by chance.
People come from all over the country (“foreigners” to home-bred Cornishmen) to eat in this light, airy, plant-filled restaurant housed in a former quayside grain warehouse, and thrill to classic dishes (grilled Dover sole, local oysters) and imaginative adaptations (spicy Goan fish curry, seafood ravioli) alike.
Chef-owner, author, BBC food-series personality and seafood guru Rick Stein’s careful and expert Harborside shopping in Padstow choice of local “gifts from the sea” is best showcased in his signature fruits de mer plate, handpicked off the trawlers and lobster boats bobbing outside.