Best boutique hotels in Brighton 2023: Boho glamour and affordable B&Bs

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Brighton certainly deserves its reputation as one of England’s trendiest seaside town. This city of two halves (Brighton and Hove) even gives hipster havens such as Portland a run for its money, and it’s easy to see why. Not only is the East Sussex city teeming with the hipster must-haves – record shops, vintage boutiques, vegan restaurants, coffee shops and tattoo parlours – it also boasts a cool club scene, alternative vibe and LGBT+ friendliness.

Then there are the pebble beaches, fun fair pier, cultural curiosities and art galleries, the legendary Lanes lined with independent shops and a burgeoning restaurant scene to suit every possible taste and pocket.

Add a continual run of events – such as the Fringe Festival, the Great Escape and Artists Open House – and it’s clear this seaside spot has much more to offer beyond the beachfront. Hence visitors flock here from all over the UK and even farther afield.

But where to bed down after exploring everything this south coast beauty has to offer? Again, you’re spoilt for choice, with Brighton and Hove offering everything from boho establishments in the city centre and hotels with funky decor, to glamorous retreats with sea views. But if you’ve got your heart set on a boutique bolthole by the sea, here’s our pick of the best boutique hotels in Brighton.

Neighbourhood: Kemp Town

Romantic bolthole, anyone?

(Blanch House)

This is the sort of bolthole you dream of for a romantic getaway: small, perfectly formed, no kids allowed, and a swish champagne bar on the ground floor. What’s more, as Brighton’s first-ever boutique hotel with years of experience, Blanch House really delivers with the glamour.

We recommend the vibrant Pommery Room or the opulent Art Deco-styled Legacia Room, but each of the 12 updated and themed bedrooms across this attractive Georgian townhouse are the stuff of fantasy. Expect oodles of richly coloured velvets, mirrored wallpaper, a flash of the Jazz Age in furniture and fittings, alongside sumptuous beds and gilded mirrors. Heavenly stuff.

Neighbourhood: Kemp Town

An oasis of cool and calm


Tucked away up a narrow Kemp Town side street, this skinny, salt-flecked Victorian townhouse may appear to be your typical seaside B&B but, once inside, it’s a scene of cool-white calm with refurbished rooms mixing original cornicing and bold artwork with minimalist décor.

Expect spotless bedrooms, scrummy breakfasts, pops of drama from Brighton-themed murals, alongside crisp, white linen and heavenly beds. There are only six bedrooms, but all are decently sized and equipped with Bluetooth docking/charging stations, retro fridges, snacks and tea and coffee-making facilities. Plus, brand-new to its offerings is Nineteen’s very own Baking School.

Neighbourhood: Kemp Town

On the doorstep of Kemp Town’s seafront

(The White House)

Set in a stunning, whitewashed Victorian villa just 100m from Kemp Town’s seafront, this friendly guest house benefits from a sunny, plant-decked patio alongside three bedrooms with private balconies.

Family run, The White House is impeccably decorated with Orla Kiely touches, and its modern breakfast room carries a snazzy seaside vibe in Brighton-themed artwork, lime-green banquettes and a candy-striped feature wall.

Settle in for a top-notch full English (taken outside, if the sun is shining), smoked salmon and scrambled eggs or creamy wild mushrooms on toasted brioche – all created from locally sourced ingredients, natch.

Best for flea market snoopers: Snooze

Neighbourhood: Kemp Town

The breakfasts are legendary with the locals


Expect loads of vintage eye candy in this funky guesthouse. Outside, it’s all period Victorian charm, but inside? A riot of reclaimed fairground rides, LP covers, shag-pile carpets, classic gig posters and flying ducks. You name the era, and they’ve probably sourced the go-to accessory – all huge fun if the retro look is your bag.

Snooze offers eight individually styled bedrooms, including two attic suites, all with BeeKind eco-friendly products, tea trays and Snooze-branded sticks of Brighton rock. And the breakfasts, from classic full English to scrummy vegan options, are the epitome of belt-busting deliciousness.

Neighbourhood: Hove

(The Claremont)

How Hove has grown. No longer Brighton’s dull twin, the ’hood is now hugely des-res, with a clutch of niche restaurants and bars, as well as a quieter seafront. A tranquil oasis close to the beach is The Claremont, which (unusual in this city) features an enormous walled garden. Order a Pimms, enjoy sunny belt-busting breakfasts or indulge in an afternoon cream tea.

All of the 11 bedrooms in this double-fronted Victorian villa show a respect for its architectural footprint, and though the decor is a tad old-fashioned, you at least get loads of space. Back rooms are best for peaceful nights.

Neighbourhood: City centre/West Pier

Kooky charm and vintage finds

(The Oriental)

In a former life, this Grade II Regency pad was the home of the Brighton Belle nightclub, where a youthful Norman Cook honed his skills. Today, The Oriental is an altogether quieter, less sticky establishment, yet still with kooky charm. Expect lashings of visual drama – wacky paintings and plum colour notes mixing with covetable vintage finds.

The nine gracious bedrooms are visually calmer, with many featuring full-length windows, ornate stucco and high ceilings. Book room No.4 for dazzling sea views from its small balcony. Nice perks include complimentary coffee and cake on arrival and retro sweets in the bedrooms.

Price: Doubles from £70

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Neighbourhood: Kemp Town

In the centre of Brighton’s action

(New Steine)

This boutique bolthole is perfectly placed for Kemp Town’s alternative night vibe, being within walking distance of live music venues, burlesque bars and characterful pubs. Highly affordable and exuding Gallic charm (the owner is French), its 20 rooms (some with oblique sea views) range from cosy singles to a basement suite with its own quiet patio.

What New​ Steine lacks in terms of on-trend decor is compensated by singularly friendly service. Its bistro restaurant serves up well-executed French dishes and has an extensive wine list. During Brighton’s May festival, New Steine’s basement has been known to stage live events and art exhibitions.

Best for romantic weekenders: Drakes

Neighbourhood: Kemp Town seafront

You can’t beat a roll-top bath with a sea view


An award-winning restaurant, Poirot-perfect Art Deco-styled bedrooms, roll-top baths and peerless sea views – what’s not to like about Drakes? This glamorous 20-bedroom establishment, set in a double-fronted Georgian property just minutes from the pier, is easily one of the sexiest boutique hotels offered by the city.

Service is impeccable, the modern British cuisine memorable and the decor – from curvy cornices and warm elm wood detailing to handcrafted beds – all help to make for a super-stylish stay. Nice touches include complimentary vanity packs from The White Company and pre-ordered love hampers. Pick a city view room to avoid seafront noise.

Neighbourhood: Regency Square

There’s nothing subtle about these rooms

(Hotel Pelirocco)

Saucy, sassy and ever so OTT, the Pelirocco takes themed rooms to a whole new level. Mirrors on the ceilings? No problem. Fifties pin-up decor? They’ve got it covered. Stetsons and yee-haw gingham? Book the DollyWould. If clashing and kitsch does it for you, then one of the Pelirocco’s 19 bedrooms is bound to please.

Sure, it’s a little tired around the edges, but if you’re after fun, look no further. Super welcoming, and a firm favourite with locals, its breakfast room-cum-cocktail bar stages DJ nights and live gigs. Even better, they offer a rockstar-friendly midday check out.

Neighbourhood: Regency Square

Get ready to mingle at the bar

(Artist Residence)

More boho club than boutique hotel, this heavenly 25-bedroom pad mixes dense Farrow & Ball colour notes and retro finds with hip, commissioned artwork. Arty rooms with cool graffiti-covered walls or eye-catching murals take up one half of the double-fronted Regency townhouse; Classic Rooms, the other. And there are attractive aspects to both – copper slipper baths, retro radios, old Anglepoise lamps and lashings of reclaimed wood and tartan detailing. You can even hang out with hipster locals in the bar (some great health-kick cocktails here) before dinner.

Neighbourhood: Regency Square

This hotel has serious design credentials

(Hotel Una)

Book a sea-facing deluxe in this 17-bedroom townhouse hotel and you’ll get your own private balcony, oodles of beautiful Regency detailing and a spacious, contemporary look. One-off designer furniture mixes with standalone roll-top baths, sumptuous platform beds and arty pendant lamps.

Hotel Una is one of the city’s most glamorous abodes, and the owner and her architect husband have invested time and talent into making all rooms seriously stylish. One room has a private cinema with popcorn on demand; another, its own whirlpool and sauna. The cocktail bar is a calm haven, and breakfasts are imaginatively different and seriously top-notch.

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