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Bathrobes & Slippers
Sentry Mead Hotel
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Sentry Mead is a dog friendly and relaxed guesthouse offering good quality bed and breakfast accommodation in the tranquil surroundings of Totland Bay. The building is a wonderful Victorian villa and is just 120 yards from the beach. Situated in the West Wight region of the Isle of Wight, Sentry Mead allows guests to easily access many local attractions including The Needles, Alum Bay, Freshwater Bay, Colwell Bay and Yarmouth Harbour.
At Sentry Mead, we have facilities for storing bicycles and drying clothes. Sentry Mead is also perfect for those wishing to bring their dog on holiday with an all-year dog-friendly section of beach and Turf Walk right opposite for a late night walk.
We also have our own off-street car park with 13 amp sockets available for electric cars (charges apply).
Sentry Mead is now over 120 years old and 2013 marked the 80th anniversary of the establishment offering hotel style accommodation to guests. We are very proud to be continuing this tradition and hope to be able to welcome many more visitors.
There is a lot of information on the website and we have tried to answer most questions. However, if you have any queries at all regarding Sentry Mead or your stay, please give us a call and we will be happy to help
Dogfriendly Magazine Review
Read our comprehensive review of this listing printed in our bi-monthly magazine.
Sentry Mead Hotel
Review by James Waters
With the kids packed off to their grandparents to be looked after, we had a rare chance to take Stanley away for a few days. Our destination was Sentry Mead at Totland Bay on the Isle of Wight.
We had been to the Isle of Wight a couple of times some years ago, but not with a dog, so this was going to be a somewhat different trip. The first dog navigation part of the journey was the ferry trip. There is some recommendation by Wightlink that dogs can be left in the car during the short journey across the Solent. We didn’t think Stanley would be too happy with that. (And certainly not at the point when car alarms go off for no apparent reason during the crossing.) We took him up on one of the decks and were somewhat confused as to where dogs were allowed. There is some sign posting but not entirely clear (depending on the ferry actually). So you do need to read the ferry map quite carefully and we were moved on from the slightly softer fabric area to the wipe clean seated area in a different section. But this was no problem, and the journey is very quick, so we were quite happy all looking out the window during the trip. On the other side it was a short drive (34 minutes) from Fishbourne, where the ferry arrives from Portsmouth to Totland Bay on the north west coast.
You can also take the ferry from Lymington in the New Forest to Yarmouth which is much closer to Totland bay. Once at Totland Bay we had a couple of hours before our room at Sentry Mead was ready, so we took Stanley down to the bay and looked for some light refreshments. We were quite keen to discover an alcoholic beverage in light of being without children! It’s a short walk from Sentry Mead to Totland Bay promenade which has a small shingle beach and is used largely for yacht mooring and some watersports.
There are two bar/cafes at Totland, The Bar Cafe, on the pier where the far end is in refurbishment and The Waterfront, a short walk to the far side of the bay. The Bay Cafe is new, extremely popular and required advance booking during our stay. There were still Covid restrictions so there was a limitation on dining across the island. However, the Waterfront Cafe on the other side has a nice tiered garden area looking out to sea, so we had a cool drink there and booked in the restaurant for our evening meal.
After enjoying our refreshment, we ventured to the hotel and were given a warm welcome by managers Gayle and Mark. The hotel has 12 bedrooms, and we were in the Brook Suite. The downstairs is quite spacious and has a dining room for breakfast and a lounge/snug room which feels very inviting. It also has a lovely patio area which leads into the garden, perfect for pooches who need a goodnight wee. The Sentry Mead also operates an honesty bar, which we enjoyed using while sitting out on the patio with Stanley.
After checking in and relaxing we then went for our evening meal. The Waterfront has a nice light and spacious restaurant and Stanley felt very at home in the surroundings. There were a few other dogs so we were definitely in good company. In fact, generally Totland is particularly dog friendly. The Bay Cafe and The Hut restaurant just a way along the coast at Colwell Bay are also dog friendly. The food at the Waterfront was pretty good and Nicola recommends the paella as something to have from the menu. We made our way back to the Sentry Mead, enjoyed the honesty bar (for the second time that day) before heading off for some sleep.
For our second day, we planned to visit Carisbrooke Castle knowing it to be dog friendly and then find a great dog friendly beach. The castle is in the middle of the Isle Wight near Newport. (Another place that is dog friendly, but we have been to before is Godshill Model Village Museum. Definitely one of my favourite dog friendly things on the island and a unique vintage experience re-creating village life in the 1950s, but in miniature.)
Carisbrooke Castle was great for exploring a medieval castle with good historical importance to the island. During the civil war Charles I was imprisoned here and I for one was delighted to find the centrepiece of the exhibition was his lovingly preserved silk pants.
The best bit, of course, is that the castle is very dog friendly, with the exception of inside the café and the museum building, which is only small so easy to take in turns. The café has some sheltered outdoor seating though. We were also lucky being away during one of the few sunny weeks of 2021…
We enjoyed taking Stanley up the parapets which are on various levels and unlike some castles there wasn’t any narrow spiral staircases that would have been unsuitable for dogs. Looking out of the top turret I think Stanley’s head for heights was far better than mine. Following our castle trip we headed off to find a great dog friendly beach and made our way across to the south east side of the island. Sandown is a great touristy sandy beach, but it has restrictions for dogs during peak season. However, head more east along the coast and Yaverhill beach is quieter and less busy. We did a nice walk along to the far side near the cliff and took a bit of a dip. Stanley has become a little bit shy of waves so he wasn’t so keen on getting near the shoreline, but enjoyed watching and greeting some dogs on the walk.
After a couple of relaxing hours we headed back to Totland and had dinner at the Cow restaurant which is just outside town. It is situated on a farm park with various outdoor activities as well as the restaurant. Again, the restaurant is super dog friendly, and we felt quite at home. The food is high quality, fast food style, but in lovely and different surroundings. After our meal we headed back to the hotel, via a walk along the Totland promenade and a quick drink at the Waterfront Bar.
On the third day before we made our way to the ferry and with the temperature particularly warm, we found a shaded country park walk at Fort Victoria, which has a few amenities and gift shops for day trippers. There was a good hillside walk with views that gave Stanley a bit of exercise without getting him too hot. We were a bit early for the ferry so stopped at the pub, The Fishbourne, which is literally 1 minute from the terminal. It was quite warm and all the other tables with parasols were taken so we went inside and found it to be completely dog welcoming.
So, a great final stop before our ferry trip home.
Sentry Mead Hotel, review by James Waters and appears in DogFriendly magazine issue 67. For more information on the DogFriendly magazine visit https://www.dogfriendly.co.uk/magazine
Steve Bennett, August 2022
A wonderful hotel- felt very welcome with the dogs.
Listing Updated: 04/07/2023
Changes to businesses do occur. Please do double check this business is still dog friendly before you make a booking
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