Hotel Review: Royal Yacht Jersey, Fit For a King?
Take a look at the glossy, glass heights of the luxuriously modern Royal Yacht Hotel and it’s hard to believe that it’s just two minutes away from Jersey’s shopping streets and a stone’s throw from the waterfront.
It’s even more of a stretch of the imagination to think that you’re in one of the oldest hotels in St Helier.
Well, some of it at least. The hotel has undergone a multi-million pound investment to transform it into a contemporary masterpiece, and while you may spot 19th century character in the ‘old’ part of the hotel, guest rooms take pride of place in the glass-fronted modern section with its stunning views.
There’s no doubting this hotel’s marine theme – it is named The Royal Yacht after all, but if you think more luxury cruise ship you won’t go far wrong. And just like a cruise ship, this hotel has everything on board to keep you entertained. Check-in comes with an ‘Orientation Guide’ that unfolds to map out the hotel’s three restaurants and four bars, as well as the superb Spa Sirène. However you may not even want to leave the comfort of your spacious room – many of them have their own private balconies where you can enjoy a drink or breakfast outside.
Restaurant Sirocco, the Royal Yacht’s fine dining restaurant, takes pride of place on the hotel’s first floor, with a terrace to allow you to choose between dinner in the fresh air with the setting sun and the sea in the distance, or a seat inside the smart restaurant with its floor-to-ceiling windows and marina views. The menu is fun and inventive, with dishes including pan fried scallops with artichoke purée, pork beignet and Cox’s apple textures followed by roast turbot with a pine nut crust and crab and lobster cannelloni. And as Sirocco’s terrace turns even more romantic at night with inky blue skies and twinkling lanterns on every table, the restaurant provides blankets so you can enjoy the last of the evening air outside.
The Royal Yacht’s subterranean Spa Sirène is a serene, marine-themed space, with treatment rooms named after mermaids and plenty of indulgent ways to relax – an aromatherapy steam room with twinkling ceiling lights, sauna, experience shower, heated marble relaxation beds and at the centre, an impressive pool with a hydrotherapy styled jacuzzi. It’s easy to see why this spa’s top notch facilities won it this year’s Good Spa Award.
Make the most of the spa’s pampering treatments to get yourself ready to party – the hotel’s Café Zephyr is the place to be seen as Jersey’s cocktail-sipping glitterati prepare for a night on the town.
Fun and exuberant, Café Zephyr’s terrace has plenty of alfresco atmosphere, but thanks to its high-powered heated canopies, you can show off your tanned shoulders without shivering. A Café del Mar-style playlist makes it feel more Balearic than British, and if you need something to graze on over cocktails, try the famous sushi and sashimi platters.
The restaurant serves an all-day menu of mouth-watering fusion dishes from crispy chilli beef to Asian noodles and delicious miringlazed steak.
With everything under one roof, The Royal Yacht has all the facilities of a top class cosmopolitan hotel, yet all the character of a chic boutique escape. In the heart of St Helier, and in the centre of the action, you won’t want to leave.
The only regret from my visit? Not booking one of the penthouse suites with their own private hot tubs on the balcony. Now that’s my idea of luxury…