Visiting the Alexandra Hotel, Lyme Regis
by Amanda Jones
When taking a trip to the South West of England, no town is a more perfect example of the English seaside at its best than Lyme Regis. Situated on the Jurassic Coast (a World Heritage Site), the town makes an idyllic spot for those on the hunt for hiking, boating, history, fossils, independent shops and long days on the beach.
Nestled in the heart of this picturesque seaside town is the Alexandra Hotel (as featured in Conde Nast and Elle magazine), which serves as the perfect place to stay and dine. I spoke to Kathryn Haskins, Director of the hotel.
The Alexandra is a family-run business. How long has it been in your family?
The building was originally built in 1735 and has been a hotel since 1901. My parents bought it when I was a teenager, and it’s been in the family for the last 30 years.
Tell me more about what’s on offer here at the Alexandra?
We have a newly refurbished chapel which is a really beautiful place to host weddings, dinner parties, and other events. We have a garden gym and a treatment room, where customers can have hot stone or aromatherapy massages, and a private yoga teacher who offers yoga on the beach.
I’ve noticed that you support a lot of local businesses in your restaurant?
Yes absolutely, we try to source our food, wines, beers, and other drinks from local businesses where possible. We stock Furleigh wine, which is made just down the road here in Dorset.
We also make an effort to celebrate local artisans throughout the hotel. We have local artists’ artwork on the walls, jewelry from a local jeweler on display in the cabinet, and candles from a local candlemaker in the bedrooms.
You support several charities too. Are they charities that are close to your heart?
Yes, we try to support local charities where possible, including The HUB, Julia’s House Children’s Hospice, Lyme Regis Museum and the RNLI. The fundraisers which are held here have been an incredible chance to meet some inspiring local people.
Last question: what are your favourite things about Lyme Regis?
I love that Lyme feels like a small pocket. I love the history – its links to Jane Austin, John Fowels and David Attenborough in particular. The museum is an incredible place to learn more about the history and paleontology that really makes Lyme Regis special.