UK B&Bs "reign supreme"
- according to tourists worldwide

"Britain's B&Bs reign supreme" according to TripAdvisor's users: Britain lays claim to four of the world's top 10 B&Bs, seven of the top 10 B&Bs in Europe - and even takes second and third place in the best B&Bs in the world category.

TripAdvisor spokesperson Emma Shaw commented: "Yet again, Britain's B&Bs continue to be celebrated as some of the very best in the world"

Despite narrowly missing out on the honour of world's best B&B to a property in Italy, Athole Guest House in Bath takes second place in the World, while No1 in St Ives, Cornwall comes in third. All Seasons Guest House in Filey and St Michael's Guest House in Scarborough rank in sixth and seventh places respectively.


British B&Bs now rated 15% higher than hotels

British B&Bs are now outperforming their larger hotel rivals by over 15% on average, and the UK's hotels and B&Bs are now rated among the very best in Europe, data released on May 25th by TripAdvisor has revealed.

In 2011, the average TripAdvisor review rating on UK B&Bs was 4.47 compared to 3.87 on UK hotels. UK B&Bs are consistently rated higher in the Service category, with the average review rating in 2011 standing at 4.59 compared to 4.05 for UK hotels.


"Out with hotels, in with B&Bs"
The Times, 12 Jan 2008

"British bed and breakfasts are set for a revival as hotels are now so expensive that most families cannot afford to stay in them" reports The Times on Saturday 12 January. Adam Raphael, editor of the Good Hotel Guide, is reported as saying that "B&Bs offer the best value", and that B&Bs "offer the best breakfasts in Britain".

    "B&Bs are one of the glories of the British tourist industry...
    the antidote to the claustrophobic uniformity of chain hotels.
    Britainís vast network of B&Bs is something that foreigners envy
    but appear unable to emulate."
    The Times, 12 June 2008

    "In 2008, British bed and breakfast is hot."
    The Guardian B&B Directory, May 2008

    "What B&B stands for now is 'more bang for your buck' - a room in a new wave B&B
    is basically as good as, or better than, a hotel room - at half the price."

    Nikki Tinto of (quoted in The Guardian, 17 May 2008)

B&Bs raise their game in Britain
The Times 25 April 2009

Pillows are feather, coffee is Illy, jam is home-made, and breakfast is whenever you want it to be. The British B&B has upped its game.

Establishments where breakfast, overseen by a bosomy landlady, is on no account served after 8am, now skulk in a few old-fashioned seaside resorts. The chintz-decked guesthouse has finally been forced out of its traditional role by the unstoppable rise of the boutique hotel.

Requests for vegetarian breakfast, Earl Grey, or anything similarly left-field were once greeted with pursed lips.

Now real coffee, local pork and apple sausages and home-made bread are likely to be cheerfully offered in your B&B.

Read the full article at Times Online.

The great B&B revolution
The Guardian Saturday May 17, 2008

"For elegant accommodation, look to the new breed of
homely yet stylish British bed and breakfasts"
says Sally Shalam

Champion of the individual B&B and creator of the Special Places guidebooks Alastair Sawday says: "If you pay £90 for a B&B for two, you will get all sorts of little extras: conversation, views, peace, breakfasts to remember, advice and even help when needed. And all this from delightful human beings rather than corporate functionaries. For the same £90 a hotel simply cannot do it."

Nikki Tinto [of trendsetting interned accommodation site] goes even further and ventures to compare modern owners to "personal concierges" who will give invaluable insights into the local area.

What has happened is that a generation of well-travelled, discerning, often design-literate professionals has decided that urban stress is fine Monday to Friday but at the weekend they deserve a break. As the number of short trips we take increases (up to 10 per year on top of longer holidays), cheap flights to European cities aren't always the answer and Britain, as a consequence, is getting a bigger and bigger slice of the weekend-break pie.

We spent an incredible £1bn staying in B&Bs last year. While holidaying in our own backyard enables us to keep an eye on the carbon footprint, it's not the full story. The fact is, short breaks in Britain are now undeniably hip.

According to VisitBritain, which assesses the lion's share of the accommodation in this country, 41% of it is bed and breakfast. And in my experience, and others', much of it has upped its game.

"The style of accommodation has evolved dramatically," says Sawday. Many bed and breakfasts are offering luxurious elements such as flat-screen televisions, designer furniture and high-quality bedding."

The AA - celebrating the centenary of its hotel services this year - had to introduce a new category to its annual awards last year to reflect the current change. In addition to its traditional Landlady of the Year (a delightful anachronism worthy of sponsorship by Bryson), an award is now made for the funkiest B&B. The title might sound a bit like your dad trying to sound street but you get their drift. I even hear that adding more categories is currently under discussion.

Owners are part of a new breed of "landlady" (though many are male, of course). These are often relocating city dwellers looking for a means to diversify or for help with a hefty mortgage. Often without any previous experience in the hospitality industry, many are, in my experience, pulling off the whole show incredibly well.

The most disappointing breakfasts I eat these days are in hotels, while B&Bs repeatedly bring outstanding stuff to my table. There might not be a newspaper outside my door first thing, but it's a small price to pay for freshly squeezed juice and a plate of food cooked to order instead of something that's been kept hot under a grill for half an hour.

The expectation level is notching up so fast that there's no knowing what B&Bs will throw in next. For now though, according to Nikki Tinto, it's acceptable to expect some of these: "Probably free wireless internet, usually an honesty bar or even a butler's pantry and, when you arrive, you might get afternoon tea with a slice of homemade cake."

Read the full article at

The Bed & Breakfast Association

One of the objectives of the Bed & Breakfast Association is "To promote to the public the advantages of staying in independent 'bed and breakfast' accommodation". To that end we will soon be launching a new website aimed at the travelling public: