Where To Stay
The George, From £125 Per Night
The George in Rye is a real destination. We stayed there a few weeks back, on the 12th November. The 12th was the night that Rye would have its bonfire night. Being at the George was the perfect choice for experiencing this exciting evening. We had a magnificent dinner in the hotel restaurant and then explored the rest of the celebrations in town. Afterwards, we retreated to the hotel bar for a few stifners before the festivities started. This was all topped off with the most glorious night's sleep.
To think that this hotel had a devastating fire in 2019 seems incomprehensible. When entering, you feel as if you've walked into the home of an old, very stylish friend. That effect has been managed by the keen eye of the owner Katie, along with the extraordinary work of Retrouvius. I can't wait to visit again.
Tillingham is set amongst 70 acres of rolling hills and woodlands. They have converted their former Hop Barn into an elven-room hotel. You won't find TVs there, instead Roberts Radios and extraordinary views. While you're there, you can eat at their restaurant and enjoy their wine-tasting room. It's a ten-minute drive from Rye, so a good choice for those who want a bit of countryside and a chance to visit the town.
Rentals In The Area
As you know at Tat, we are always keen on home comforts, so here are our favourite rental properties in the area -
Where To Eat
As mentioned above, we had a magnificent meal there. Huge recommendation.
Tillingham has recently welcomed new head chef, Brendan Eades into the fold (formerly Doug McMaster’s Silo, The Conduit Club). Brendan’s talents and experience focusing on field-to-fork dining have brought exciting new developments to our overall food offering.
This must be the plaice! A cracking fish and chips shop with all the trimmings.
The Union is a restaurant and bar set in a 15th-century building at the heart of Rye. Their food is guided by the seasons, and our menu is ingredient-led, so changes happen daily based on what we have available to them.
The Fig offers up an exciting, independent cafe which is complete with fresh, healthy food and hearty cocktails.
Is a modern all day eatery, offering up such culinary delights as Turkish eggs and Halloumi hash. It also has 6 bedrooms on offer for those wanting to roll into bed.
Where To Drink
This list could be as long as my arm. This is a town with top-notch pubs.
We tried to have a drink here, but it was full, and my heart dropped. It was my perfect spot for a drink. Fire, hops and steeped in history, the bar was said to be a hot spot for the Hawkhurst Gang, local smugglers in the 1730s and 1740s. Next time I'll be sure to pop by!
The Plough is an excellent country pub, a short drive outside Rye (I'd be keen to know if there was a good walk to it), with a beer garden that offers up picturesque views of the Brede valley. They pride themselves on doing pub classics with creativity. I hear their sticky toffee is fantastic!
A good pub garden can make everything feel wholesome. You're outdoors; the dogs are barking, the kids are playing and whats this, a delightful cold beer has been put down in front of you. If that image sounds like your sort of heaven, I would suggest heading to Ypres Castle Inn. Their pub garden looks out onto the harbour, and I can't imagine a nicer place for summer drinks.
Rye Waterworks Micropub
Rye Waterworks is the first Micropub to open in South East Essex. Its a wonderful place with a huge selection of beers, great snacks and friendly staff. Its slap bang in the centre of town so its almost rude not to pop in for a tipple.
What To Do
With any holiday destination, I like to crowbar in a visit to a house museum. Sometimes they can be full of waxwork figures and slightly disappointing. Other times, I find them a wealth of inspiration. Interiors from the early 20th century that still look elegant and beautiful today. Thankfully Lambs House is the latter. An excellent spot to hit if you are on a literary pilgrimage as its been home to many writers, including Henry James from 1897 to 1914, and later E.F. Benson.
I am a huge fan of going to the cinema. Even if the film is a dud, I always manage to enjoy myself. What makes this better are cinemas with character. If you, too, are into the more intimate setting to watch your films, I would direct you to the Kino. A two-screen cinema which was formerly a Victorian library. It has a great cafe, and an excellent spot outside too enjoy your after-film debrief.
Tibbs Farm is close to The Plough Pub mentioned above. So if you've got a day to explore this might be a good idea. In the summer you can go and pick your own fruit, there is also a great cafe, a maze and pig watching. All of which I am happy to get onboard with.
A Walk To Camber Sands
Always fun to have a trip to the beach. I go with high hopes of a dip in the sea. But those hopes soon drift away once it comes to it. But either way, sea air and a walk have been proven to make life feel 10% better (research by Tat Insitute).
As one of Tats Top Shop's, I was dead excited to visit the McCully & Crane digs. It did not disappoint. There isn't an artwork or piece of furniture I wouldn't be over the moon to own. We bought a table and are currently saving up for one of Poppy Ellis' magnificent portraits.
What a space, what an aesthetic! This place can keep you captivated for a while. Every corner had something I wanted to investigate. Jo and Barrie McPhersonm have created something extraordinary, and I was so happy to visit and meet them both finally.
When we entered Merchant & Mills, it was a buzz with people. Some were looking to find the right fabric, others the right pattern and we were searching through their bits and bobs. Like the two above shops, I had only ever seen the online representations of these shop, so it was with much excitement that we noised around.
Puckhaber on Lillie Road has been an old favourite, so I was delighted to see their sister shop in Rye. It occupies the most wonderful shop space, made even more brilliant by the owners' clever finds and excellent curation—another must on your shopping trip.