Rick Stein is not the only show in town. In Padstow, Cornwall, Paul Ainsworth is another celebrity chef cooking up a storm.
He has his Michelin-starred No 6 restaurant, a more casual Italian called Rojano’s and now Padstow Townhouse, a six-room hotel with oodles of charm.
Normally, a room costs upwards of £280, but we are paying £120 B&B. This seems to be because the restaurants are closed for a overhaul, which means we have breakfast in our room, rather than walking down the hill to Rojano’s. Both are now open again.
The Daily Mail's Inspector called in at the Padstow Townhouse in Cornwall (pictured) which is in the same family as chef Paul Ainsworth's two local restaurants
A smiley girl called Cherish rushes out to the car park and ushers us into the scented candle-lit reception. ‘Leave the keys in the car and we’ll move it if we have to.’
There are two rooms on each floor, all named after one of Ainsworth’s puddings.
We’re in Popcorn, which has a wide oak floor, French empire bed, blue wallpaper patterned with horses and birds, an antique blanket box and a glass-fronted fridge with enough booze to throw a party for 40.
The bathroom has two showers with the biggest sprinklers we’ve seen.
‘Gorgeous,’ says my wife. ‘I’d like to stay a week.’
I’m taken by the Pantry round the corner from Popcorn, where you help yourself to scones and cakes and jot down what you’ve consumed.
The Popcorn suite, which has a wide oak floor, French empire bed, blue wallpaper patterned with horses and birds, an antique blanket box and a glass-fronted fridge
There are no other public areas, but the rooms are so big and well equipped (Apple TV, radio, coffee machine, Bluetooth speakers) that it’s like having your own flat.
We’re busy admiring everything when Cherish knocks on the door and gives us two miniature lamb pasties.
Later, when we come back from dinner, she and her colleague have left a note beside a flask containing what they call ‘Paul’s Marvellous Medicine’, which turns out to be hot chocolate with Cointreau.
More treats in the morning, when two trays worth of breakfast arrive: yoghurts, muesli, cold cuts, cheese, croissants, hot milk, cold milk, fruit, Danish pastries.
This is first-class hospitality. The only jarring moment comes when I am asked by the credit card machine if I want to leave a tip. Unnecessary.
Padstow Townhouse, 16-18 High Street, Padstow, Cornwall PL28 8BB
01841 550950, padstowtownhouse.co.uk
Doubles from £280 B&B