Harry Rogers spent three nights at Daish’s Hotel in the Isle of Wight to see why the hotel chain has been a top choice for groups for nearly 40 years.

Spacious and comfy rooms – tick. Friendly and helpful staff - tick. Large garden – giant tick! Daish’s Holidays’ flagship hotel on Shanklin High Street offered a quiet and entertaining stay, with top attractions nearby which are enough to tempt groups into a visit.

If, like me, you love your history, then this is the spot for you – I’m talking large chandeliers, golden-framed paintings on the stairwell, retro, patterned carpet and plenty of pictures on the wall to show how the building has developed over the years since starting life as a coaching inn during the 18th century.

Daish's Hotel, Isle of Wight

The hotel dates back to the 18th century and was originally a coaching inn.

There are 72 bedrooms, a coffee shop, bar, restaurant and ballroom to enjoy, with optional excursions also bookable as part of your package to the likes of the Isle of Wight Steam Railway or Queen Victoria’s holiday home Osborne House – in fact, it’s suggested that the Queen once stayed in room 31. The hotel is suitable for groups looking for an affordable base to explore while still finding comfort away from home.

What’s included in a Daish’s Holiday package for groups?

  • Luxury coach travel or free hotel guest parking on-site.
  • Convenient pickup and drop-off along popular routes.
  • Breakfast and three-course evening meal every day.
  • On-site entertainment.

Upon arrival, we spent time in the large garden with a few drinks to settle in. With its central location, the garden overlooks the pretty High Street which is full of thatched roofs and presents a great opportunity to people watch. Large double doors lead back into the main walkway and reception, with high ceilings and beautiful paintings a constant throughout. The bedroom was incredibly roomy, with steep windows overlooking the garden and plenty of storage space to hide away baggage.

The food isn’t bad either. Breakfast and dinner are included in your booking, with a range of dishes served every day for all tastes. Scrambled eggs on toast was a must on my first morning after a late night enjoying live 60s music, a cryptic pub quiz and bingo in the ballroom.

Daish's Hotel, Isle of Wight

All rooms are spacious with plenty of storage facilities.

In fact, every night provided guests with fun, local entertainment which was enough for some to hit the dance floor. Perhaps after a few more pints from the well-stocked bar, I could have been tempted too!

Dinner-wise, the macaroni cheese was delicious, as was the sausage and mash with thick gravy that warmed up one very drizzly evening on the island. Starters included vegetable samosas and garlic mushrooms in the large restaurant which had designated seating and easy order forms, so you knew exactly what was on the menu. Service was prompt and always with a smile and a chat before heading into the ballroom in the evening for bingo with Phil – a member of the team who made the experience truly special for all guests throughout my stay.

Shanklin, Isle of Wight

Source: Visit Isle of Wight

Groups can easily explore Shanklin from the hotel, with plenty of gift shops and pubs to choose from.

High Street shops in Shanklin present a pleasant experience for finding souvenirs and unique items. You can also soak up the atmosphere of the promenade which is a walk down the hill or a ride in the handy cliff-edge lift.

I may not have won bingo, and we may not have had the most up-beat weather to match the ambience of the hotel, but I left feeling refreshed and well-looked after. GTOs searching for a peaceful stay on the Isle of Wight will definitely want to consider Daish’s.

For more information about all of Daish’s Holidays’ offers and hotels for groups, go to www.daishs.com