Bristol has a rich and eventful history and so it’s only fitting that behind some of its biggest hotels, lies a wealth of fascinating facts. Take a look at these little nuggets…

The Bristol

The Bristol

Image - The Bristol's honeycomb carpark

One of Bristol’s only Harbourside hotels, this former motel was built in 1966 – at a time when the majority of the city’s former docks were still undeveloped. Surprisingly, the building is Grade II listed, thanks to a fancy bit of honeycomb concrete which makes the hotel’s multi-storey carpark a classic example of the Modern architectural movement.

Mercure Bristol Grand Hotel

Mercure Bristol Grand Hotel

Image - Mercure Bristol Grand

Movie stars Stan and Ollie (as in slapstick duo Laurel and Hardy) might not recognise the graceful Victorian hotel where they stayed during a brief visit to Bristol in 1953. The Grade II listed exterior looks much as it did when it first opened in 1856, but after a recent interior revamp, overseen by London design company Central Studios, the hotel now features over 500 pieces of commissioned street art. The restaurant, Keepers, is bee-themed. And there are bee hives on the roof.

Radisson Blu

Radisson Blu

Image - Radisson Blu hotel blending into the sky, credit Michael Prys-Roberts

Bristol’s tallest hotel was once the headquarters of Bristol & West Building Society  ­–  one of the UK’s oldest financial service brands, originally founded in 1850. The drab 1960s office block was one of the city’s least liked buildings but in 2009, it was transformed with glass cladding and a new penthouse floor to become the gleaming blue-tinted skyscraper we see today. The views from the upper floors are among the best in the city. See for yourself on Bristol Doors Open Days.  

Doubletree by Hilton Bristol City Centre

Kiln restaurant Doubletree by Hilton

Image - The Kiln Restaurant

Tucked away behind this modern Redcliffe hotel, is one of the city’s most interesting, historic buildings. The Kiln, the hotel’s rotund restaurant, is housed in the remnants of a 17th century glass-blowing kiln - a relic of Bristol’s once thriving glass industry; not just Bristol’s famous blue glass, but run-of-the-mill window and bottle glass, too. The brick-built kiln – the only surviving example in the city - would originally have had a tall conical chimney.

Novotel

Novotel

Image - Novotel, Bristol

This thoroughly modern hotel sits on one of the city’s oldest thoroughfares. Listed buildings on both sides of Victoria Street define a place of mixed heritage where industry and commerce have rubbed shoulders for centuries. Look out for the leaning tower of the medieval Temple Church, Ye Shakespeare pub (circa 1803) and examples of Bristol Byzantine – a distinctive style of revivalist architecture, popular during the late 19th century, which gave Byzantine flavour to many of the city’s industrial buildings.

Bristol Marriott Royal

Bristol Marriott Royal

Image - Statue of Queen Victoria outside Bristol Marriott Royal Hotel

One of Bristol’s oldest and most prominent hotels, this grand old lady lay empty and almost derelict in the years leading up to 1991, when the building was restored and re-established as one of the city’s landmark hotels. Built in 1863, the Marriott Royal, sits right next door to Bristol Cathedral and overlooks a statue of Queen Victoria, erected to mark her Golden Jubilee in 1887. The hotel has welcomed a string of celebrity guests; including Cary Grant, Winston Churchill and Charlie Chaplin.

The Mercure Bristol Brigstow

Brigstow

Image - view of Bristol Bridge from Mercure Bristol Brigstow hotel 

On a cobbled street on Welsh Back, the Brigstow is a hop and a skip from Bristol Bridge, built in the 1760s, to replace a medieval toll bridge lined with overhanging buildings which stood up to five-storeys high. In those days, Bristol was better known as Brigstow - meaning place of the bridge – hence the name of the hotel.

The Mercure Holland House Hotel

Mercure Holland House

Image - street art-themed rooms at Mercure Holland House Hotel

Overlooking the magnificent spire of St Mary Redcliffe Church, this former office-block-turned-hotel sits on a hill above Redcliffe caves (which you can also explore on Bristol Doors Open Days) – the secretive maze of red sandstone tunnels that delve under this area of the city, thought to have once been a hideout for the pirate, Blackbeard. And the hotel is keen on local history: both old and new. The reception features a wall clad in riveted copper sheets - a tribute to the city’s maritime past; and a few of the 275 rooms have been treated to mini makeovers on very Bristol themes: choose from street art, cricket or Brunel.

Related

The Bristol - a member of The Doyle Collection
Hotel
The Bristol - a member of The Doyle Collection

As one of the city’s premier places to stay, The Bristol offers visitors a unique opportunity to be in the very heart of Bristol’s beautiful Harbourside.

Mercure Bristol Grand Hotel
Hotel
The Mercure Grand hotel Bristol

The four-star Mercure Bristol Grand on Broad Street, Bristol has had an extensive makeover giving the historic Grade II listed building a stylish and distinctive new look and feel.

Radisson Blu Bristol
Hotel
Radisson Blu Hotel Bristol

Stunning hotel in the centre of Bristol, with amazing views and 176 modern guest rooms

DoubleTree by Hilton Bristol City Centre
Hotel
DoubleTree by Hilton Bristol City Centre Bedroom

Located close to Bristol Temple Meads, this hotel features modern rooms overlooking the city.

Novotel Bristol Centre
Hotel
Novotel Bristol Centre

Modern 131-room hotel, located close to Bristol Temple Meads railway station and the city centre

Bristol Marriott Hotel City Centre
Hotel
Bristol Marriott Hotel City Centre

A great family hotel in the centre of Bristol which has a large number of rooms which have with two double beds, suitable for families. The hotel also has an indoor pool and restaurant.

Mercure Bristol Brigstow Hotel
Hotel
Mercure Bristol Brigstow Hotel

City Centre hotel featuring great dining and views of the river

The Urban Bar & Kitchen at Mercure Holland House Hotel
Restaurant
The Urban Bar & Kitchen at Mercure Holland House Hotel

Mercure Bristol Holland House Hotel creates an extensive area for lounging, meeting, drinking and dining, in cosy bunks, booths, lounge areas and stylish seating.