Bristol, United Kingdom

Number Thirty Eight

Rates per night from$135.49

Price information

If you haven’t entered any dates, the rate shown is provided directly by the hotel and represents the cheapest double room (including tax) available in the next 60 days.

Prices have been converted from the hotel’s local currency (GBP108.33), via, using today’s exchange rate.


Elegant Georgian townhouse


Clifton cliffside

Picturesquely set on the edge of the Clifton Downs park in Bristol, Number Thirty Eight hotel's stately Georgian exterior belies its sultry, stylish interiors and cool, contemporary art. A plant-dotted rooftop terrace looks out over the city, the common rooms are perfect for lounging in overstuffed leather chairs beside the fireplace and its breakfasts are renowned as among the best in Bristol.

Smith Extra

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Cream tea for two


Photos Number Thirty Eight facilities

Need to know




11am, but flexible. Earliest check-in, 3pm (check-in after 8pm can be arranged with notice).


Double rooms from $135.49 (£108), excluding tax at 20 per cent.

More details

Rates usually include full English breakfast.

Hotel closed

11 September to 15 December 2017.

At the hotel

Terrace, DVD library, free WiFi throughout. In rooms: flatscreen TV; Roberts digital radio; a minibar; free tea, coffee and cookies; and REN toiletries.

Our favourite rooms

The West Loft Suite is the star at Number Thirty Eight, with its dark teal walls and a soak-worthy copper-toned bathtub for two (there’s also a powerful shower neatly tucked away in what at first glance appears to be a second wardrobe). The suite stretches the length of the townhouse, with views of Clifton Downs on one side and the multi-coloured city rooftops stretching into the distance on the other. The East Loft Suite has the same spacious layout and a more neutral palette.

Packing tips

Your camera. It doesn’t matter whether you prefer Brunel or Banksy: Bristol’s got plenty to photograph, and Number Thirty Eight’s ideally situated for exploring the city. There’s plenty to shoot in the hotel, too, from the choice antiques in the reception rooms to the modern art dotted around.


As in many historic hotels, sound travels between floors: wearing heavy shoes in your room won’t endear you to your fellow guests.


Over 12s only.

Food and Drink

Photos Number Thirty Eight food and drink

Top Table

In summer, sip cocktails on the outdoor terrace, overlooking the rooftops of Clifton. When it’s colder, take afternoon tea in one of the two reception rooms.

Dress Code

Bristol’s a laid-back city, even in elegantly renovated merchant’s townhouses. Wear your best jeans and you’ll fit right in.

Hotel restaurant

None. Breakfast – Continental and full English, both made with the freshest local ingredients – is served in two elegant and airy reception lounges (or in the larger bedrooms).

Last orders

Breakfast is served 7.30am–9.30am on weekdays and 8am–10am at weekends; enjoy afternoon tea until 8pm.

Room service

Room service is available 8am–8pm; dine on a traditional cream tea and sip tea and coffee, soft drinks or cocktails.


Photos Number Thirty Eight location
Number Thirty Eight
38 Upper Belgrave Road Clifton Bristol
United Kingdom


Fly in to Bristol Airport, 10 miles (or about 25 minutes) away, which has direct flights from a host of European destinations (such as Paris, Amsterdam, Barcelona, Vienna and Zurich) and various spots around the UK (


The Brunel-designed Bristol Temple Meads, four miles from the hotel, is the nearest railway station. It’s served by First Great Western trains from London, Manchester, Cardiff and Birmingham.


There’s metered parking in front of the hotel, from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday, with a maximum three-hour time limit. The hotel have limited permits, which must be requested in advance of your stay; priority will be given to guests staying for more than one night. Free parking can be found on Stoke Road (a five-minute walk from the hotel) or Ladies Mile (a 10-minute walk from the hotel). To reach Number Thirty Eight, head to Bristol then follow signs for the zoo – the hotel's on the same street.

Worth getting out of bed for

Isambard Kingdom Brunel designed the Clifton Suspension Bridge in 1831 – it’s still the posterboy of Bristolian icons more than 180 years later. Take a 700ft stroll across it over the Avon Gorge and into Somerset. Admire the city’s most gorgeous Georgian terrace, Royal York Crescent, at the end of Clifton Village; the village itself is a historic hillside neighbourhood full of upscale shopping and amazing Avon Gorge views. Explore the exhibitions, take in an independent film screening or enjoy a live dance or music performance at the Arnofolini, on Bristol’s waterfront. The centre also has one of the country’s best art bookshops. The Royal West of England Academy on Queen’s Road is full of art and design treasures, ranging from works by YBA stars like Tracey Emin and Damien Hirst to drawing workshops and lectures on Banksy. Tour your way around Bristol by strolling from Banksy to Banksy; one of the most famous – and easy to find – works by the anonymous artist is the Banksy on Frogmore Street in the centre of town.

Local restaurants

Tuck in to fresh seafood at chef Mitch Tonks’ restaurant The Spiny Lobster, on Whiteladies Road. The service is top class, the ingredients fresh and the clientele smart; it’s a short walk from Number Thirty Eight. Cowshed is a carnivore’s dream: the on-site butcher prepares juicy steaks and more at this laid-back restaurant on Whiteladies Road; the knowledgeable staff are more than happy to chat with fellow meat lovers. Have you ever enjoyed a delicious dinner while watching swimmers doing lengths in the underwater-lit pool below? Now’s your chance: Lido Restaurant, Spa & Pool, tucked away between attractive Georgian terraces, serves up some of the best dishes in Bristol, from breakfast to dinner – with afternoon tea and tapas in between. The Clifton Sausage on Portland Street serves up the best of British cuisine.

Local bars

Enjoy a local ale or glass of wine at the Kings Arms on Whiteladies Road, one of Bristol’s better pubs.


Photos Number Thirty Eight reviews
Tim Chester

Anonymous review

By Tim Chester, Writer and web editor

I’m pretty sure Number Thirty Eight is run by ghosts. We certainly barely saw a living soul there. From the moment we arrived, lurching through a fitful snowstorm to find the place bolted, barricaded and guarded by a lone fellow guest puffing on a cigarette, to the moment our time was up, we pretty much had the place to ourselves.

Sure, somebody emerged from a dark panelled door on the ground floor to pass us a key, and someone else materialised two days later to settle the minibar, but on the whole it was a house of whispers, faint creaks, and pervasive silence. This atmosphere of isolation in the centre of a big city was partly down to the time of year (halfway through January) and partly the intentional design of the hotel, which eschews an official reception, bar and other noisy communal trappings in favour of peace and privacy and a quite lounge/breakfast-room hybrid where the conversational volume is turned to murmur. It was like The Shining without the spooky twins or personality disorders.

Which was alright by Mrs Smith and me. As we explored the West Loft Suite, collapsing onto the sprawling sleigh bed and running a scalding bath in the copper-toned tub for two, we opened the bottle of room service red and toasted anonymity. Our quarters spanned one half of the top of the house, boasting huge sash windows with full length blinds that rose to reveal the snow-covered grassy expanse of the Downs on one side and Clifton’s hodge-podge multi-coloured houses on the other. Further deep blue panels enclosed a toilet and a separate shower with requisite dinner plate head, stuffed with Ren toiletries. Bedside tables were packing cases and a huge vintage chest sat at the foot of the bed. A Union Jack digital radio had been tuned to Jazz FM by a spectre prior to our arrival.

We were here with several aims: to splice that most monochrome of months in two, to escape the tedious talk of post-Christmas dryathalons surrounding us on social media, and to revisit the city I grew up in over a decade ago. I promised I’d go easy on the nostalgia. That was easier said than done. As with any town in which you spend your formative years, the streets were stamped with reminiscences and full of my own personal ghosts from the depths of my memory. Even a short walk to the alma mater, an imposing 16th-century pile that ‘looks like Hogwarts’ according to Mrs Smith, brought back visions of furtive first cigarettes, fumbled encounters in bushes, scrapes with the law and all those other teenage hoops laid before an impressionable teen.

Number Thirty Eight is perfectly positioned for exploring the best of Bristol in a morning. Twenty casual minutes on foot took us past Bristol Zoo (impressive as they go, but covered in exhaustible depth in my youth) to Brunel’s spectacular Clifton Suspension Bridge, built a century and a half ago and long-favoured as a spot to bid a permanent farewell to the world. A swift about turn led us away from sudden death to Clifton Village, home to the city’s most exclusive residences and best boutiques, for coffees and all manner of decadent delicacies at the Mall Deli.

As the tome on local history in our room pointed out with a typically local mix of respect and cynicism, Bristol is the victim of thousands of years of, shall we say, creative town planning, bombing raids and bureaucratic buggering about, and as a result has grown higgledy-piggledy on a hilly, unsuitable patch of Britain into a charming mess of alleyways, dead ends and incongruous architectural clashes. While nearby Bath is a compact, convenient, tourist-friendly postcard of a town, Bristol is a living, breathing fallible mess of a place and all the more charming for it.

The descent from Blackboy Hill to Whiteladies Road (named after pubs, not long-forgotten slave trading or racial profiling, apparently) and on to Park Street is a must. Britain’s flatlining high streets are nowhere to be seen here although the likes of HMV and Woolworths never really muscled in on it in the first place. Instead family businesses thrive after decades and new contenders – from the massively popular Cowshed steakhouse and butcher’s shop to the forthcoming River Cottage – are constantly upgrading Bristol’s status as a city worth your attention. Park Street, meanwhile, is a must for vintage threads and quirky accessories and of course Banksy’s famous Naked Man stencil.

That evening, after two obscenely large steaks and a couple of pints of local Bounders cider at the nearby Townhouse restaurant we retired to our room at the top of the house at top of the hill. Mrs Smith thought we might hear some of the infamous local, ahem ‘doggers’ on the Downs, but middle-aged grunts were thankfully absent from the bushes and our sleigh bed whisked us off into a blissful slumber.

The following morning, woken by the sun peering over the city’s ramshackle skyline and feasting on cake-like homemade bread and butter and a spectacular full English spirited to our table, it struck me that Bristol’s grown up as much as me over the last 10 years. Over two wet January days the city pulsed with life as locals, shoppers, tourists, musicians, artists, rowers and sailors flowed through its roads and river. Change has certainly marched through – the sparkly Cabot Circus shopping centre has supplanted the shabby Galleries mall where we used to bunk off school and try to (unsuccessfully) charm local girls – but is hasn’t trampled over the city’s soul. It’s a place to be proud of, and Number Thirty Eight is the perfect address from which to explore.




The Guestbook

Whenever you book a stay at a Smith hotel or villa, we’ll invite you to review it when you get back. Read what other Smith members had to say in Number Thirty Eight’s Guestbook below.

We loved

The decor, comfy bed, gorgeous bath, breakfast. The staff were so friendly and gave us a great recommendation for dinner at a local restaurant.


Stayed on 8 Nov 2018

We loved

Huge bathroom in the suite and very comfortable bed. Lovely views over the city.


Stayed on 7 Sep 2018

We loved

We loved our beautiful and elegant bedroom overlooking the Downs. Wonderfully situated closed to the picturesque village Clifton, within a short walking distance of Brunel's Clifton bridge and the camera obscura with views right into Bristol. Delicious breakfast served in a delightfully modern old-world setting. Friendly and helpful staff. Lots of local restaurants to choose from, we enjoyed lunch at the River Cafe. Deliciously simple food and very good value too.


Stayed on 29 Apr 2018

We loved

We loved the hotel breakfasts, shame they finish at 9:30 in the week – but ordering it to your room was a great idea. The bathroom was also gorgeous – beautiful views over Clifton from the roll top bath. We enjoyed a fantastic and reasonably priced tasting menu at a nearby restaurant called Bulrush.

Don’t expect

To be within spitting distance of Bristol City Centre – it probably took us 35 mins to walk into town, but was an easy bus or taxi ride.


Stayed on 29 Mar 2018

We loved

The attention to detail by the staff, who made it the most relaxing and welcoming break.

Don’t expect

Evening meals – they only do breakfast but it's delicious. 


Stayed on 29 Dec 2017

We loved

The hotel was extremely comfortable with nice touches such as mince pies and port in the Drawing Room on arrival. The room was very well equipped with all the creature comforts such as tea and coffee, toiletries, bathrobes and slippers – it instantly felt like home from home! I would definitely recommend the hotel for city breaks and will be back very soon to enjoy their hospitality. Thank you Number Thirty Eight! Cafe Du Jour does very nice breakfasts and I can't recommend The Cowshed Restaurant on Whiteladies Road enough – their food is exceptional!


Stayed on 20 Dec 2017

We loved

Breakfast was definitely the highlight, it was absolutely delicious! Very comfortable, large bed and great bathtub (although noisy to fill up!).

Don’t expect

Quite a busy road, so if you sleep with the window open you hear the traffic.


Stayed on 21 Jul 2017

We loved

Very good service, 5-star comfort, great breakfasts. 


Stayed on 11 May 2017

We loved

The style of the hotel, the staff, the breakfasts. Room four was perfect for our Smith afternoon tea whilst watching the world go by.... if it had been warmer the terrace looked lovely.

Don’t expect

Wild nights, the public areas close at 8pm - didn't bother us at all. Bristol and Clifton have plenty to offer.


Stayed on 15 Apr 2017

We loved

The fantastic breakfast, the glorious views, the fabulous bath and the friendly staff. Loved the square kitchen and the trinity centre.

Don’t expect

How quiet it was and the amazing breakfast.


Stayed on 9 Apr 2017

We loved

The breakfast was fantastic! The Ox in Clifton was a great steak restaurant! Also, a must is to walk down to the Clifton Suspension Bridge - it is gorgeous.

Don’t expect

Wild nights.


Stayed on 25 Mar 2017

We loved

Our room - we booked one of the loft suites and had a copper bath and fantastic views over the city! Service was fantastic with friendly, helpful staff. Nothing was too much trouble.

Don’t expect

A full length mirror was the only thing lacking!


Stayed on 2 Feb 2017

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