A stay in Chester can be surprisingly affordable, even though the spectacular black-and-white facades of the Rows and 1,000-year-old cathedral might suggest a city of opulence. And just because you’re counting the pennies, doesn’t mean you have to forgo quality. Budget-friendly options include a pub-hotel on the banks of the Dee and a former tithe house for the Earl of Shrewsbury.
With a great location directly next to the River Dee, the views in this pub-hotel are worth a thousand times what you’re paying. The location gives The Boathouse an aura of tranquility, a great escape after busy days exploring. The rooms have a nautical theme and all come with Freeview-equipped TVs, so your evening’s entertainment is sorted.
This hotel may be affordable, but its pedigree is impeccable. Situated within the Roman walls, it’s said to be the oldest licensed house in the city, with both the pub and hotel dating back to 1155. The interiors reflect this illustrious heritage – make sure to check out the impressive staircase which dates back to 1533. The 31 bedrooms are cosy and welcoming, with warm colours, and the larger suites have roll-top baths and original Jacobean panelling.
With a simple, homely atmosphere, the conveniently central location of this three-star hotel makes it stand out. Located within the Roman city walls, it’s less than a five-minute walk to the shops and sights of the city centre. The hotel sits in a restored Georgian-style townhouse, and the rooms have original features such as stained glass windows. Modern comforts, including tea and coffee making facilities, make for a cosy stay.
Located in a restored Victorian townhouse, Maison Claire might be budget-friendly but it feels high-end. Just two minutes’ walk from the city centre, you’re close to the shops and attractions. The rooms have been decorated with patterned wallpaper and painted tiles; all have ensuite showers, TVs, and tea- and coffee-making facilities. In the morning, take your cuppa to the pretty back garden to enjoy some sun.
If you’re a history buff, you’ll love the Ba Ba Guesthouse. It was the birthplace of decorated World War Two pilot Leonard Cheshire, and there are mementos to him scattered throughout the hotel. The rooms have an elegant and simple decoration scheme. But what’s not simple is the breakfast: expect farm-fresh eggs, bacon and sausages from a local butcher, and locally sourced vegetables. Come hungry.
Once a tithe house for the Earl of Shrewsbury, staying at the Three Kings Studios gives you a sense of history. The building is more than 500 years old. Speak to the staff who have an intimate knowledge of that storied past. Rooms are cosily decorated with warm colours and patterns throughout. Modern comforts include powerful showers and luxuriously padded headboards.
Its location is incredible, right next to Chester Cathedral. The views of the 1,000-year-old Church of England building from the hotel windows are worth the fee alone. The rooms have been uniquely designed, but all have a comfortable, warm feel. Unique ornaments are scattered throughout the hotel. The restaurant serves delicious, locally sourced, seasonal food, so make sure to stop by during your stay.
The Queen might be budget-friendly, but it certainly doesn’t feel like it. It’s on the larger side with 221 rooms, all of which come with comfortable Tencel mattress toppers, roll-top baths and Nespresso machines. Some even have four-poster beds. Pub grub – try the welsh rarebit – and cask ales are found in the Waiting Room & Bar. Alternatively, afternoon tea is served in the Albert Lounge, where you’ll also find an open fireplace.