In Review

The Angel Hotel Abergavenny review: at the top of its game for comfort and cuisine

A fine base to explore the Welsh market town and the nearby Brecon Beacons 

While billed as “the gateway to Wales”, the Monmouthshire market town of Abergavenny is carving out more of a reputation as a hub for food. There’s a variety of local traders, some fine eating places and, annually since 1999, one of the UK’s leading food festivals

Located a short walk from the station, Abergavenny Castle and the Linda Vista Gardens, The Angel Hotel is a fine base to explore the area on foot or, with the Brecon Beacons a short drive away, by car. 

A deluxe four poster room at The Angel Hotel in Abergavenny

A deluxe four poster room at The Angel Hotel

Why come here? 

The Angel Hotel forms a centre-point to almost all of the above. Originally built back in 1829 as a coaching inn, the Angel maintains the air of the traditional hotel but hasn’t rested on its laurels, nor is it stuck in the last century. Contemporary artwork dots the walls, there’s good free Wi-Fi, flat-screen TVs, and much of the interior of the building, if not the rooms, is light and airy. It also offers multiple options for event spaces and, for guests requiring a little more space, two nearby guest cottages. The Angel isn’t what you’d call at the cutting edge of luxury but, in terms of welcome, comfort and location, it’s very much at the top of its game. 

The Oak Room at The Angel Hotel

The Oak Room at The Angel Hotel

Eating and drinking 

There is, of course, a fine breakfast on offer at The Angel, and the locally-sourced meats back-up the town’s food hub reputation. More than that, however, the hotel has its own bakery so the bread and pastries are both excellent and produced in-house. 

Beyond the second half of the expected “bed and breakfast” offering, however, The Angel has much, much more up its sleeve. The Oak Room, under chefs Paul Brown and Wesley Hammond, offers a wide-ranging menu that celebrates the local but via a world of influences, with Thai green mussels and chicken tikka pie vying for attention alongside local smoked salmon, aged Welsh beef, and locally-sourced fish. There’s also a popular afternoon tea on offer, and a decent local bar, The Foxhunter, with a strong cocktail menu and its own Angel Ale. 

Plus, of course, there’s sister business The Walnut Tree, where Shaun Hill has been serving his simple, contemporary cooking for 14 years, and held a Michelin star since 2010. That, however, is so good, it warrants an entirely separate review

Foxhunter Bar at The Angel Hotel

Foxhunter Bar at The Angel Hotel

What to do 

As mentioned above, The Angel isn’t what you’d call cutting edge, and facilities are limited to, essentially, bed and food and beverage (plus meetings). As a base to explore Wales or Herefordshire, however, it’s ideally placed and you will, at least, be well-fed before you go yomping across the Brecon Beacons or the Wye Valley. 

The Angel Hotel, 15 Cross St, Abergavenny, Gwent NP7 5EN; angelabergavenny.com 

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