Visiting hotels for a showround is usually, at best, a one night affair barely giving you enough time to see any of the local environs and leaves the feeling of having driven an awful lot. So it was with great delight I accepted the kind offer of a weekend at the Barcelo Old Ship Hotel in Brighton.

I arrived at the hotel early evening and managed to get a space in the hotel’s privately owned car park (there are very few seafront hotels in Brighton that can boast this!). My car was parked by a valet who directed us into the hotel through the car park saving us from the cold outside. Check in was pain free and expertly handled by the Reception Manager who was extremely professional and knowledgeable.

Our room (the Hicks Suite) was huge and comfortable and enjoyed views over the seafront. Dinner was excellent as was the service and the drinks prices weren’t excessive. On Saturday morning I met with Richard Clarke the hotel Sales Manager who gave me an excellent showround. As far as conference venues in Brighton go I feel the hotel is ideal, I will come onto the two largest function rooms shortly but the syndicate rooms and boardrooms and well furnished and abundant. The Paganini Suite (named after the famous Italian violinist) is huge and really oozes Regency splendour. The room benefits from high, beautifully decorated ceilings, a minstrels gallery and a large stage. Adjoining the room is the Regency Suite which is similarly decorated in the Regency style and also benefits from a beautiful stained glass window. Perhaps the hotel pièce de résistance is found below ground in the cellars. Part of the original building, which dates back to 1559, the cellars purport to have been used by smugglers to stow their bounty and also closely linked with the Royal Escape of Charles II. Nowadays they are used a room suitable for 26 people for board meeting, receptions or private dining. It is extremely atmospheric and would certainly create a talking point!

On the whole I think the hotel would be ideal for all types of events especially a Masonic Ladies Weekend with good food, comfortable bedrooms, beautiful banqueting space and plenty of quiet corners and talking points what more could you want for your Lodge? How about fantastic prices? Well booking through Square Events from October to March prices start from only £125 per person per weekend inclusive of a drinks reception.

To get a free, no obligation, quote regarding your Masonic Ladies Festival please contact [email protected] or call 01202 400855

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