Ffynnon

Gwynedd, Wales, United Kingdom Book from

Small boutique hotel in beautiful southern Snowdonia: good for romantics, families and lovers of the great outdoors
The small market town of Dolgellau lies at the foot of Cader Idris in North Wales. It's a couple of miles from the stunning Mawddach Estuary and a great place to explore southern Snowdonia. Spend your days hill-walking, mountain biking or riding horses along nearby sandy beaches, then count your blessings to be resting up in this comfy townhouse. Transformed from Victorian rectory to chic B&B, it's hard to fault. Upstairs, past stained glass windows and local art, its 6 large bedrooms are as relaxing and indulgent: pillow menus, crisp white bedlinen, sleek bathrooms and techy stuff are all to hand (but not at ferocious cost).

Wired into all things Welsh, charming manager Angela can suggest where to go and what to see. In the restaurant, local produce is de rigueur and the honesty bar's beer is excellent. Relax by the fire, help yourself to a drink and even try their huge outside hot tub. Everything made us glow.

Highs

  • Stylish rooms mixing affordable prices with luxe details: fresh flowers, claw foot baths
  • Location: easy to walk into town, head for the mountains or drive to sandy beaches
  • The mini guest kitchen and baby pack is a bonus for those with youngsters
  • The friendly manager Angela is happy to organise an impressive array of outdoor activities from guided hikes and pony trekking to rock climbing and white water rafting
  • An on-site restaurant and good eateries nearby, plus Champagne in the honesty bar and homemade picnics on request

Lows

  • When we last visited the restaurant was newly opened and refinements were ongoing - the addition of softer lighting and relaxing music would help create a lovely dinnertime ambiance
  • There's only one taxi company in the area - it can be tricky for going out on Friday/Saturday nights, but booking in advance helps (a service Ffynnon is happy to provide)
  • North Wales isn't the easiest place to get to, so stay a few nights and enjoy the beautiful drive

Best time to go

Any time of year. The outdoors is bracing in winter and glorious in summer. Ffynnon has cosy fires and a fun hot tub.

Our top tips

The George III is a popular traditional pub with a superb location on the estuary - an ideal lunchspot after a leisurely walk.

Great for...

Beach
Family
Great Outdoors
  • Boutique B&B
  • 6
  • Restaurant + bar
  • All ages welcome
  • Open all year
  • Pool
  • Spa Treatments
  • WiFi
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Beach Nearby
  • Off-street Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym
  • Bicycles Available
  • Kids' play area
Room: Emily

Rooms

The 6 freshly decorated rooms are all full of comforting touches: soft wool carpets, crisp Egyptian cotton sheets, waffle bathrobes and slippers, a welcome jar of cookies and a bottle of Welsh water. The sumptuous bathrooms have big windows, luxurious Welsh Myddfai bath products and stacks of fluffy towels.

Myfanwy, where we stayed, is Welsh inspired and decked out in muted greens. The big brass bed gave us a solid night's sleep and the bathroom’s roll-top bathtub was the perfect place to unwind. Couples will like the boudoir-style of Sydney’s maroon walls, velvet and linen furnishings and gothic mahogany bed. There's a slipper bath in the bedroom (so you can watch TV while you soak) as well as an ensuite shower room.

If you need a twin room, opt for Annis: decorated with splashes of deep red and charcoal. Its bathroom has slate flooring and a sleek freestanding bath with overhead shower. Aimee has more of a French twist with its Corbeille double bed and pretty chandelier. Colours are creamy with dark pink touches; an armchair invites you to read by the fireplace.

Second-floor Emily undoubtedly has the most impressive bathroom, with an enormous walk-in shower and bateau bathtub. There’s also a kingsize bed and a sumptuous seating area by the Victorian fireplace. This floor is also home to Hazel, a particularly large suite with a separate living room. This space can be converted into a twin bedroom - ideal for families.

Features include:

  • Bathrobes
  • Cd player
  • Central heating
  • Coffee tea making
  • Cots Available
  • Dvd player
  • Extra beds
  • Fan
  • Fireplace
  • Phone
  • Radio
  • Tv
  • WiFi

Eating

The formal restaurant is an airy, high-ceilinged space with sleek modern chairs and tables. The food is overseen by Bernhard, Angela’s husband, who single-handedly creates everything that comes out of the kitchen. We dined on tasty local lamb and steamed monkfish, both displaying creative flair and beautiful presentation.

Head to the drawing room honesty bar for an after-supper tipple, the half bottles of Champagne (with minimal markup) were a pleasant surprise, as was the very good Ewes Frolic lager, produced at a local microbrewery.

At breakfast, we helped ourselves to jugs of juices set up on the wooden dresser, as well as cereals, fresh fruit salad, creamy yogurt and fruit compote. Eggs are from organic, local, free range birds.

With a bit of notice, Ffynnon can also send you off with a picnic lunch, which might include homemade soup, ciabatta sandwiches and homemade Bara Brith. The Butlers Pantry also lets you fix yourself a simple snack whenever.

Ffynnon provides a pre-arrival booking service for local restaurants; they often book up so this gives you more chance of getting in. Just ask for their latest recommendations.

Features include:

  • Bar
  • Breakfast
  • Children meals
  • Coffee tea making
  • Communal dining
  • Lunch by arrangement
  • Restaurant
  • Restaurants nearby
  • Room service
  • Shared butler's pantry
  • Vegetarian menu
Eating:
Activity: Mawddach Estuary

Activities

  • Qualified guides can be arranged for a huge range of invigorating activities including hiking and mountain biking, climbing, abseiling, gorge scrambling, tree-top walking, kayaking, white water rafting, even paragliding
  • Go walking or climbing - make an ascent of Cader Idris or take a stroll alongside the beautiful Mawddach estuary (the latter has a disused railtrack that's now a flat path for you to walk or cycle several miles out towards the sea)
  • Head north to visit the quirky Italianate pastiche village of Portmeirion
  • Many guests go horse riding on the beach using local stables
  • Take a ride on the Ffestiniog steam railway - you'll need to drive up to Porthmadog or Ffestiniog - trains depart twice a day
  • At the end of the day have a soak in Ffynnon's hot tub - quite an experience in mid winter - or arrange an in-room treatment (aromatherapy, massages, facials, manicures or pedicures)
  • Relax by the fire with a book and make yourself a drink from the honesty bar

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Cycling
  • Hiking
  • Historical sites
  • Horse-riding
  • Kayaking
  • Massage available
  • Rafting

Kids

Ffynnon welcomes children and with a son of their own, the owners are geared up for those with a baby or small family. However it's worth bearing in mind that Ffynnon is an immaculately kept little hotel, so you should make sure your children are well behaved during their stay. Please note that there is no babysitting on offer but there is a free baby listening service, which must be booked in advance. Cots are free of charge, extra beds incur an additional cost, see Rates.

Best for:

Babies (0-1 years), Teens (over 12)

Family friendly accommodation:

Four rooms have space for a baby cot, of these Myfanwy could accommodate an extra bed instead, king suite Emily could host an extra bed for a child as well as a cot, and Annis can be booked together with Aimee to create an interconnecting suite which could sleep a family of five in comfort. Dedicated family suite Hazel is considered the best family option as it has a separate living room that can convert into a twin bedroom.

Baby listening:

Baby listening is available on request with advance notice

Baby equipment:

  • Baby cots
  • High chairs
  • Bedding
  • Steriliser
  • Pram
  • Toys
  • Monitors

Remember  baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking

Children's meals:

Half-portions of adult dishes are available from 6.30pm in the restaurant. Kids also have a special breakfast menu to choose from: our young daughter loved her French Toast Teddies and Three Bear's Porridge. The shared butler's pantry, with microwave and fridge, is a handy extra

Kids Activities on site:

  • Large garden
  • Children's indoor and outdoor toys and games including a PS2
  • Family-sized hot tub (for up to 6) with own outdoor changing and fab views
  • Over 100 children's DVDs

Kids Activities nearby:

  • Gentle walks with (or without) buggy, or a family cycle include the well-kept path along the beautiful Mawddach Estuary, with lunch in a family-friendly pub at the end
  • Bounce Below - world's first underground trampoline - & Zip World Cavern - world's largest underground zipline course - 25 minutes away

Families Should Know:

Ffynnon is on a hill so be prepared for a few changes of level, plus staircases throughout the building. The steps in the garden have handrails

Distances:

  • Airport: 90 minutes
  • Hospital: 5 minutes
  • Shop: 3 minutes
Kid Friendly:

Our guests' ratings...

10/
Rooms
8/
Food
10/
Service
9/
Value
9/
Overall

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Rates for Ffynnon