Dorset, United Kingdom

The Pig – on the Beach

Rates from (ex tax)$222.77

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 21 days.

Prices have been converted from the hotel’s local currency (GBP208.75), via openexchangerates.org, using today’s exchange rate.

Style

Higgledy-piggledy manor house

Setting

Gardener's world

WINNER: BEST SMITH HOTEL – SMITH HOTEL AWARDS 2015

Bewitchingly British, this modern-minded manor house has a panoramic perch on Dorset's eye-catching coastline. The Pig – on the Beach hotel in Studland revolves around life in the kitchen garden, with fresh-foraged ingredients and locally sourced supplies enlivening the imaginative, daily-changing menus. Whimsical thatched follies and glamping cabins complete the tales-of-Blyton picture.

Smith Extra

Get this when you book through us:

A bottle of the hotel's own-brand wine in your room on arrival

Facilities

Photos The Pig – on the Beach facilities

Need to know

Rooms

23, including three private Hideaways and two suites.

Check–Out

11am; earliest check-in: 3pm (Monday to Sunday), 3.30pm (Sunday). Times are flexible on request, subject to availability.

Rates

Double rooms from $222.77 (£174), excluding tax at 20 per cent.

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 21 days.

Prices have been converted from the hotel’s local currency (GBP208.75), via openexchangerates.org, using today’s exchange rate.

More details

Rates are room only; Continental buffet breakfast, £10; full cooked breakfast, £15. A two-night minimum stay applies at weekends and on bank holidays.

Also

If the hotel's excellent food takes your fancy, order one of their house-brand wines in the bar; the Pig Hut label (developed with Rhône winemaker Michael Chapoutier) has three blends: a red, white and rosé. Rooms are kitted out with colourful stripey beach mats: take them sea-side, or throw onto a sun lounger on the Pig's lawns.

At the hotel

Treatment rooms, kitchen garden, free WiFi throughout, Hunter wellies and brollies to borrow. In rooms: flatscreen TV, retro Roberts digital radio, larder (aka minibar) packed with local produce, Nespresso coffee machine and tea-making kit, Bramley toiletries.

Our favourite rooms

Each room has the same cosy, contemporary country-house style, with marble sinks, reclaimed floorboards and super-comfy beds. Most have soothing views – often of the sea. Comfy Luxe Rooms all have freestanding roll-top baths in their bedrooms. Generous Rooms have the most interesting period features: 14 has a four-poster bed; 15 has huge windows and a bath at the foot of the bed; and 16 has the largest bathroom, with an amazing sea view. The thatched 'dovecote' hideaways on either side of the kitchen-garden wall are pure romance for loved-up couples; and Harry's Hut, in the grounds beyond, offers a glamping experience in a pair of compact trailer cabins.

Spa

Set in a wild meadow, two treatment cabins offer simple facials and massages using organic Bamford products; book in advance.

Packing tips

Ramble-friendly beach shoes; swimwear if you fancy a dip; riding gear if you're a happy hacker. There's a selection of Hunter wellies and umbrellas to borrow in reception.

Also

Accessible room options include the ground-floor Comfy Luxe rooms in the manor's new wing.

Pet‐friendly

Only guide dogs are welcome, with advance notice. See more pet-friendly hotels in Dorset.

Children

Welcome. Cots for under-3s (£10 a night) and extra beds for under-12s (£20 a night) can be added to larger rooms (breakfast is an extra £5); and there are two pairs of interconnecting rooms. Babysitting is available via an external agency, from £10/hour.

Best for

All ages are welcome, but babies and older children will be most comfortable.

Recommended rooms

Larger room types can take an extra bed or a cot, and there are interconnecting rooms, but the pairing of Comfy room 22 and Snug Twin 23 is super for families with older children: the cute twin room is like a little boat cabin in the eaves.

Activities

There are lawns to romp on, DVDs to borrow, and plenty of colouring-in kit on standby. You have miles and miles of beautiful walks on your doorstep; and bigger kids might enjoy kayaking in Studland Bay, horse-riding or kite-surfing. The Swanage steam railway ride to Corfe Castle is fun: pop into the Ginger Pop Shop after for retro toys and lashings of ginger beer.

Swimming pool

No pool, but the little beach is a five-minute walk away and perfect for strolling, splashing and sand-pie-making.

Meals

Families are welcome in the restaurant, where there are highchairs and special dishes for children on the Piglet's Menu; staff are very obliging and will bend over backwards to help if they can. There's a fridge in your room for storing milk and snacks (you might want to ask the hotel to remove a few of the sweetie options from the 'larder' if yours are curious and sugar-craving).

Babysitting

Available through a local agency, from £10 an hour (minimum booking: four hours). The hotel asks that you contact the agency direct, ideally a week ahead, to confirm booking details.

No need to pack

Cots, cot bedlinen, changing mats, highchairs, pens and paper and U-rated DVDs are all available to borrow at the hotel.

Food and Drink

Photos The Pig – on the Beach food and drink

Top Table

On fine mornings, take your breakfast to the terrace and watch the sun glittering on the horizon. Small groups can book a private-dining experience in the gothic-style Roundhouse: perfect for families, friends and secret society gatherings.

Dress Code

As chi-chi or low-key as you please – but tea dresses and panama hats are de rigueur daywear come summer.

Hotel restaurant

The Conservatory restaurant – now a familiar Pig hotel feature – offers a daily-changing menu of imaginatively spun, prettily presented hyper-local food. Dorset-landed fish and house-smoked meats are served in a conservatory decked out like a Victorian greenhouse, at scrubbed wooden tables with vintage cutlery, potted herbs and hand-labelled condiments. Start with Piggy Bits: the pork scratchings are legendary. In the summer months, there's also a snacking menu (nibbles; foccacia cooked in the wood-fired oven) served in the terrace garden from 3pm–5.30pm. Same-day tables aren't available, so make sure you reserve one when booking.

Hotel bar

The Snug Bar is a wood-panelled, squishy-sofa-packed affair, decorated with warm fabrics and seafaring curiosities. As well as wines, local craft beers and independent spirits, there are cocktails featuring seasonal (and sometimes fantastical) ingredients: the smoky martini – laced with lobster oil and garnished with a fish scratching (yes, really) – is a corker. You can also order fireside drinks in the lounge, on the terrace or from a steamer chair on the lawn. Stogie fans, rejoice: there's a small cabinet of cigars, too.

Last orders

Libations are poured until about 11pm; after that, raid your larder for local beers and wine. Breakfast is served 7am–10am (7.30am–10.30am on weekends); lunch 12 noon–2.30pm; dinner 6.30pm–9.30pm. A lighter afternoon menu is available 3.30pm–5.30pm.

Room service

No room service, but your in-room 'larder' is stocked with treats such as locally-smoked nuts, Chococo chocolates and (for the retro sweetie fan) sherbet Dipdabs.

Location

Photos The Pig – on the Beach location
Address
The Pig – on the Beach
Manor House Manor Road
Studland
BH19 3AU
Studland
United Kingdom

Planes

Bournemouth airport is just under an hour's drive away.

Trains

A train from central London takes around two hours. The closest station is Wareham, on South West Trains' London Waterloo–Weymouth line, about 20 minutes' drive from the hotel; it has connections to Poole, Southampton, Sussex, Wales and beyond.

Automobiles

If you’re staying longer than a night or two, a car’s handy for exploring. Less than three hours from London, the Studland Bay peninsula is best reached via the car ferry across the mouth of Poole harbour. In summer, roads can become congested with holidaymakers, but it's worth the effort. There's a free on-site car park for hotel guests.

Other

The Bramble Bush Bay chain ferry (aka the Sandbanks ferry: www.sandbanksferry.co.uk) will save you 25 minutes of driving between Bournemouth and Swanage: it normally runs daily, every 20 minutes, between 7am and 11pm, but check the website for updates.

Worth getting out of bed for

The Isle of Purbeck is packed with rambling roads, clifftop coastal walks, pretty beaches, back-to-nature adventures and postcard-perfect villages. Poole, Swanage, Bournemouth and scenic spots such as Corfe Castle and Lulworth Cove are all within reasonable striking distance in this picturesque patch of Dorset.

Potter among the herbs and veg in the kitchen potager; stop to chat with head gardener Jo Faulks and, if you're nice, she might even give you a cutting or two. A few minutes’ walk leads you down to Middle Beach, a strip of pale sand that arcs along eastwards to Studland Head (around an hour’s walk, if you’re wondering). There’s a basic café for drinks and snacks and a little kayaking and kite-surfing centre. On Knoll Beach, there's windsurfing, sailing, waterskiing and more; horse-riding on the beach can be arranged nearby.

After you've checked out the Saxon ruins, peek into the tinchy-cute Ginger Pop Shop at Corfe Castle for Enid Blyton memorabilia, clockwork toys and lashings of ginger beer.

Studland Beach Second World War walk is English Heritage listed, managed by the National Trust and just at the end of the Pig’s garden path: visit Harry’s Fort, and stand inside the bleak bunker where Winston Churchill, Dwight D Eisenhower, King George VI, Field Marshal Montgomery and Louis Mountbatten watched the largest ever live-ammunition practice of World War II. The view is both stirring and spectacular as you imagine troops rehearsing the D-Day landings, where now only abundant wildlife, day-trippers and a few naturists arrive on the beaches. Well worth the brief detour on your way down to the beach, or before you take the South West Coast Path from Studland Village to Old Harry Rock: a 6km circular walk with spectacular views, at the start of the Jurassic Coast and the Purbeck Way.

Local restaurants

The 16th-century Bankes Arms inn (+44 (0)1929 450225) is a five-minute walk from the hotel, where you can wash down hearty portions of food – Poole Bay crab, New Forest game casserole and a hits-the-spot Ploughman's lunch –with a pint of locally brewed ale. Head into Swanage for more culinary choices. On the Old Stone Quay, simple seafood café Gee Whites (+44 (0)1929 425720) dishes up local shellfish and seafood: order plump Portland oysters, whelks, local crab and lobster, and finish with a home-made ice-cream. Cash only. For a relaxed but delicious dinner, book a table at Chilled Red (+44 (0)1929 426066), a restaurant on Commercial Road that uses the region's best produce to whip up Eurocentric menus; don't miss the Dorset cheese plate.

Local cafés

Beyond Swanage in a picture-postcard village, you can have the perfect Dorset cream tea with hot-from-the-oven scones, served on vintage china, at the dinky little Worth Matravers Tea & Supper Room (+44 (0)1929 439368). The lunch and supper menus are very tasty, too.

Reviews

Photos The Pig – on the Beach reviews

Anonymous review

Our drive to the Pig on the Beach was long. We couldn’t avoid Friday-night traffic, but nevertheless there was a frisson of excitement in the air – before reaching our destination we had to take a short open-air ferry ride. Our kids had never experienced anything of the sort (and frankly neither had we since the invention of the Eurotunnel), so we were all a little nervous, but mostly intrigued by the prospect of a car floating on water. This thoroughly enjoyable prelude compounded my belief that we’d have a great weekend away – well, that and a very favourable weather forecast. We wended down some more narrow lanes and past yet more fields, before arriving at the Pig on the Beach. I already knew of the hotel and had reasonably high expectations, but on switching into anonymous-reviewer mode, I banished all preconceptions.

It was pitch black when we arrived; in the dark the hotel resembled a stately home with its impressive frontage and rolling gardens. This preview of beautiful Dorset countryside made me look forward to exploring; I was eager to get a good night’s sleep so that I’d be awake enough to rise early, throw open the curtains and marvel at it all. I also couldn’t wait to let the kids run around on the beaches within walking distance of the hotel.

We felt like we were entering a large yet cosy home as a member of staff with a big smile welcomed us. She could tell from our faces that we were eager to dump our things in our rooms, including our tired and cranky kiddies… So, without any faffing around, she took us up to our room; and within minutes of arriving, we were getting the kids ready for bed – an new Aikens family record. 

The hotel had been informed in advance that we were bringing our three- and five-year-old children along for a family weekend. Usually that means you get a rubber duck to put in the bath tub, or something of that nature, but it was such a great surprise – both for us and our girls – to see goodies waiting for them on their bed in personalised bags: a hand-crafted bucket and spade, alongside a bounty of sweet delights. Before we knew it they were tucked up in bed and fast asleep, so we could start to enjoy our weekend. We retreated to our own majestic room and found we’d been left a treat too: a bottle of champagne on ice. I poured two glasses and we both started to relax. 

Our room reminded me of the sort of country pile English heritage supports; it had a comfortable four-poster bed with crisp cotton sheets and heavy curtains. The bathroom was vast, with a cast-iron bath tub overlooking the garden and the sea through floor-to-ceiling windows. Now, onto the minibar and goodies cupboard: what a fabulous surprise, it was full to the brim with classic favourites like liquorice, Kendal Mint Cakes and artisanal ginger biscuits. My wife was especially thrilled.

I tried to book a massage for each of us on arrival, but sadly the spa was fully booked all weekend. It was a bit disappointing (I’d definitely recommend securing a spot in advance); however, this didn’t dampen our spirits: we soldiered on to dinner and were welcomed into a drawing room with a lovely roaring fire, lots of cosy, blanket-draped chairs to lounge in and cushion-laden sofas. Another smiley member of staff led us to a dining room housed in an antique, glass-walled conservatory. Filled with mismatched, old-school wooden furnishings, the space felt homey, and climbing plants and potted herbs gave it an English-country-garden feel. Menus arrived with a basket of bread, and drinks were offered. The staff knew exactly what level of service to give – very attentive, yet relaxed – and the sommelier was surprisingly good, making a real effort to find and suggest the right wines for us.

The Pig’s ethos is very much about locally grown, sourced, shot, caught and captured food. Some restaurants use local sourcing as an unfounded PR tool, whereas hotels like the Pig are very much the ‘real deal’. Their vegetables are grown within spitting distance of the restaurant; the pigs roll around in a muddy field by the main house; and the chickens lay eggs almost to order for breakfast. The food was therefore all very seasonal and consisted of simple, uncomplicated dishes with plenty of flavour, which was exactly what I wanted. The puds were also delightful… My only niggle was that it would have been nice to have some specials thrown at us.

I went to sleep dreaming about the hearty English breakfast I would have the next morning. It was just as my subconscious hoped it would be: black and white pudding, sausages, fried eggs, beans, tomatoes, bacon… To summarise, it was yummy.

Afterwards, the kids were eager to explore, so down to the beach with our buckets and spades we went, past some sheep, a ram, the chickens, the hotel’s very cute cabins and down a steep path to a near-deserted beach. The sun was beaming down and there were caves to venture into – the girls were over the moon. Thanks to the helpful hotel staff, we soon discovered there was plenty more to keep the kiddies entertained: a huge monkey park, a fairground, a steam train and some friendly horses in the stables.

We thoroughly enjoyed our stay: the hotel is so charming and such a delight, in that it’s not trying to be a trendy boutique hotel for spoilt Londoners. It’s such a laid-back affair – you feel relaxed from the moment you arrive, and when you have to leave all you can think about is when you’ll be coming back.

The Guestbook

Whenever you book a stay at a Smith Hotel with us, we’ll invite you to review it when you get back. Read what other Smith members had to say in The Pig – on the Beach’s Guestbook below.

We loved

The friendly staff, the well equipped bedrooms, we LOVED our view (Room 20) and the yummy breakfasts. Go to Bankes Arms great for a pub meal. Wonderful walk to Swanage over the cliff by Harry's Rocks.

Don’t expect

A cheap stay! Dinner was exceptionally expensive we thought.

Rating

Stayed on 13 Apr 2017

We loved

It all... especially the food; not to be missed, along with attentive professional staff, excellent! Walk to Old Harry Rocks. Visit Corfe Castle. Local beaches.

Don’t expect

The South of France (it's England).

Rating

Stayed on 21 Mar 2017

We loved

We loved the attention to detail, the staff and the beach setting. The rooms and decor are very lovely with open fires and cosy corners. We liked the breakfast dining room set in the conservatory at the back overlooking the sea.

Don’t expect

Don't expect a super kid-friendly hotel; though we did travel with our two-year-old and the staff were great with her. 

Rating

Stayed on 6 Mar 2017

We loved

Everything! Sublime, locally sourced food, beautiful, peaceful location and friendly, considerate staff. We went for a couples weekend away, but it's such a versatile place that you could easily bring the family. The Bankes Arms pub just 5 minutes walk away is a proper country pub with good food and superb local ales.

Don’t expect

Lively nights out.

Rating

Stayed on 6 Jan 2017

We loved

The ambience of the hotel; very cosy, beautifully decorated and coloured, and excellent fresh food. The setting was magnificent – overlooking the estuary of Poole harbour, with direct views of the Isle of Wight in the distance, and magnificent chalk cliffs. The grounds are spacious with a beautifully kept walled kitchen garden providing fresh vegetables daily. The bedroom was well equipped and the bed very comfortable. Direct access to the coastal path is a bonas, as is the proximity of the magnificent National Trust Studland Beach. Taking the chain ferry across the mouth of Poole harbour is well worth the effort if you're approaching the hotel from the East. The National Trust cliff walks and the Square and Compass pub in Worth Matravers are also not to be missed.

Rating

Stayed on 17 Nov 2016

We loved

Welcoming atmosphere, attentive staff, great attention to detail everywhere, rooms, restaurant, inside and out. High standard of fittings, everywhere. Good beach access; kitchen garden an example to vegetable growers.

Don’t expect

Piped music: unnecessary, conflicts with hotel objectives. A case of more is less. Also - trivial point - I have a problem seeing "smoked kippers" on the breakfast menu. If a customer doesn't know what a kipper is, the staff can explain. Gives the impression (wrong, of course!) that the hotel doesn't know.

Rating

Stayed on 4 Jul 2016

We loved

The setting and views complemented with a friendly and informal atmosphere. Joes Cafe on South beach is a great place for a coffee stop/bite to eat if walking to and from Old Harry Rocks

Don’t expect

Hustle and bustle

Rating

Stayed on 16 Jun 2016

We loved

The Pig on the Beach delivered everything I wanted - first class accommodation, amazing food from local sources and a very large choice of wines! The bar had a great atmosphere too. On a sunny day there was a great view of the sea from the garden and some small beaches to walk along nearby. The staff were amazing and were happy to help with your requests. Lulworth Cove is about 30-40 mins drive away and is well worth a visit with many ice cream shops and pleasant restaurants. Corfe Castle was nearby too with its own village of shops, pubs, cafes and restaurants. The Bankes Arms pub and restaurant at Corfe Castle did wonderful mussels in a tomato sauce and garlic bread and their chocolate mousse was divine.

Don’t expect

Noise or lots of children or groups of young people

Rating

Stayed on 23 May 2016

We loved

Everything about it. The location is amazing with views to the sea. Loved the pigs, sheep and chickens. The hotel is a fantastic quirky building, decorated perfectly in keeping. The food was exceptional and you felt better for eating it. I recommend the walk into Swanage from the hotel. Its just under 4 miles and on a clear day has the most amazing view over the coast and into Swanage.

Don’t expect

Bright lights and lively nights.

Rating

Stayed on 11 May 2016

We loved

The service, the walks from the hotel, proximity to the beach, the food, and the sea view from our room. Walk the Purbeck way to Corfe castle.

Don’t expect

Late nights, parties, suit and tie.

Rating

Stayed on 25 Apr 2016

We loved

The location, rooms, grounds, view, food and staff.

Don’t expect

It to be quiet on Sundays (lots of non residents). A long relaxed meal, they like to rush you.

Rating

Stayed on 13 Mar 2016

We loved

Relaxed, comfy, friendly, shabby-chic atmosphere in a really beautiful setting. We also loved the best massage ever, the food, the walk over the cliffs- it was a magical birthday treat. 10/10

Don’t expect

Two small irritations: piped music, which was a bit loud especially in the restaurant (I prefer classical music as I think it gives a classier impression). Secondly, the french windows were opened in the restaurant during breakfast for other guests to keep their baby cool- so everyone else got cold and moved around to get out of the draft. Surely there was a better solution?

Rating

Stayed on 6 Mar 2016

We loved

The room (lookout), the food, the location. Local walking and beaches are fantastic, hotel are great with recommendations for both. 

Don’t expect

Wild nights, posh frocks

Rating

Stayed on 3 Mar 2016

We loved

The building, the rooms, the staff and service; the bed linen, the views, the gardens, the bathrooms. Breakfasts are amazing and included home made granola, cereal bars, and the best (local) yoghurt I have tasted. You can also boil your own eggs from their free range hens! Use the recommended walks guides - fantastic views. A beautiful area in general! 

Don’t expect

Fine dining in the evening; the food is quite rustic. 

Rating

Stayed on 23 Feb 2016

We loved

The stunning views, easy access to the beach. Lovely hotel with good customer service.

Don’t expect

Fussy old fashioned hotel service.

Rating

Stayed on 14 Feb 2016

We loved

Everything about the place. It has a lovely vibe, very relaxing with great service, food and drinks.

Don’t expect

It was pretty much as expected. We had stayed previously at The Pig in Brockenhurst and the one on the beach has the same charm.

Rating

Stayed on 23 Nov 2015

We loved

Food sourced locally made into delicious dishes. Excellent bedlinen and comfy bed and pillows.

Don’t expect

Lively nights

Rating

Stayed on 30 Oct 2015

We loved

THE HOTEL, THE ROOM, THE SERVICE, THE FOOD, THE FRIENDLY STAFF AND OF COURSE STUDLAND BAY, BEAUTIFUL. WALK THE LOVELY BEACH.

Don’t expect

A BUSY ATMOSPHERE, IT'S EXTREMELY RELAXING.

Rating

Stayed on 30 Oct 2015

We loved

The smell of woodsmoke from the open fires and the proximity to the beach. The clue is in the hotel name! Fabulous service and the best toffee martini you'll ever taste. There's an outdoor cafe at south beach. Organic tea and tasty bacon sandwiches. Get some then go for a walk on the seafront.

Don’t expect

A gym. The Pig is chill-out not work-out.

Rating

Stayed on 19 Oct 2015

We loved

The location, the atmosphere, the friendliness of the staff, and the cosiness of the log fires. Do try to drag yourself away from the comfort of The Pig to walk along the beach at sunset or to explore the Jurassic coast during the day - the walk down to Dancing Ledge is especially stunning.

Don’t expect

To have the place to yourselves: The Pig is (rightly) a popular destination!

Rating

Stayed on 11 Oct 2015

We loved

Every Thing.

Rating

Stayed on 1 Oct 2015

We loved

The setting, the meet and greet, the relaxed but comfortable feel of the place, the food and above all, the service from an amazing young team.

Don’t expect

Stuffy attitudes, strict dress code and glossy minimalism.

Rating

Stayed on 15 Sep 2015

We loved

The usual 'Pig' atmosphere welcome and food.

Don’t expect

Formality

Rating

Stayed on 4 Aug 2015

We loved

The location of the hotel so close to the coastal path and the beach. The food - innovative and so fresh.

Don’t expect

Lively evenings! Large bedrooms - we had a comfy luxe room and whilst the bed was comfortable and the bathroom large, the bedroom was definitely on the small side - only enough room for one chair which when there are two people in the room is not adequate.

Rating

Stayed on 12 Jul 2015

We loved

Decoration of the Hotel, the vegetable garden, the casual outdoor seating and the food. Our 13 yr old son loved playing croquet, Birdy Bingo in the lounge and the pigs.

Don’t expect

Anything run of the hotel mill.

Rating

Stayed on 5 Jul 2015

We loved

The ambiance, the room, the service, the food, the location and the weather!

Don’t expect

A night club!

Rating

Stayed on 1 Jul 2015

We loved

Everything about it! A very special experience. The staff were very attentive and helpful and the room was so comfortable. The hotel has such a cosy atmosphere with breathtaking views and as a bonus we had wonderful weather!

Don’t expect

Bad food or bad service!

Rating

Stayed on 23 Jun 2015

We loved

Amazing views and fab beaches and closeness to Poole ferry, Swanage, Corfe Castle.

Don’t expect

Much privacy-very busy place.

Rating

Stayed on 22 Jun 2015

We loved

The vibe, the staff, the food and the ethos

Don’t expect

Evening turndown or uniformed staff - The Pig is unstuffy and friendly

Rating

Stayed on 19 Jun 2015

We loved

The accommodation (The bothy) was superb in every way. Location amazing on the Jurassic Coast with views out across the sea. Staff and service exemplary but not intrusive. All in all a great escape! Menu designed around kitchen garden produce.

Don’t expect

If short stay menus will be the same but still varied choice.

Rating

Stayed on 14 Jun 2015