When I decided to spend a couple of nights in Sunderland instead of Newcastle, a few people around me raised eyebrows. This only made my heart grow more eager to visit Sunderland, without doubt the stronger beast of the two north east cities in terms of exceeding expectation. We all know about Newcastle – the Likely Lads, Ant and Dec, Alan Shearer, Newky Brown…but just south sits the city of Sunderland.
Sunderland boasts an impressive stretch of North Sea coastline, in particular the promenade by Roker Beach. This place has become a popular place for Guest Houses and B and Bs over the years and as such there are MANY of them. So how do you choose the right one? It didn’t take me long to find a proper family run Guest House that also has a licensed bar, a good reputation and of course, the luxury of a sea view. So when I found the Chaise Guest House online, I booked in for a couple of nights. The Chaise has been going for 28 years. Here are the top 5 things I loved about my stay in the Chaise.
1. Family Run Guest House
Many guest houses may claim to be “family run” but The Chaise truly is. The owner John greets you, meets you, asks about you and makes you feel at home. He wants you to enjoy your stay and he cares about you. When I arrived, John checked me straight into my room and gave me all the details I needed for the next 2 days, including breakfast times and information on decent local restaurants.
At breakfast in the mornings, John came over to chat. You always feel you are in a good Guest House when the owner comes to chat and is approachable. It’s no surprise that the Chaise has been running for so long.
2. Cosy Rooms
The truth is that English seaside resorts know how to do good Guesthouses, but getting good housekeepers and keeping the rooms maintained can be more difficult.
I had a room at the front of the Chaise, overlooking the beach. The room was warm, cosy and a great place to sleep for two nights. I also had a kettle with tea and coffee and a Television (I don’t get much time to watch TV but I did watch the News on it).
3. North East Breakfast
I’m going with “North East Breakfast” here as it differs from the breakfast in the south of England, and from the Scottish and Northern Irish breakfast. Gone are haggis, soda farls and tattie bread. In is black pudding.
You also get a good range of cereals, fruit juices and yoghurts to choose from with the obvious choices of tea and coffee alongside. Plus toast as a standard – a great way to start the day.
The Chaise is on Roker Seafront. If you want you can ask for a sea view in your room. I found this especially amazing as I could waken up to the sunrise over the pier and Roker Beach.
Aside from the seaside location, you are a 3 minute walk from the relaxation of Roker Park and a mere 10 minutes walk from the Stadium of Light metro station. There are some cool sights to see in and around Sunderland away from the hustle and bustle of Newcastle Upon Tyne and Gateshead.
5. Fully Licensed Bar
John tells me that the Chaise is currently the only Guest House in Sunderland that has a fully licensed bar. Saves you having to walk down the road if you fancy a pint.
As well as catching up with some work and sleep in The Chaise, I also toured the cities of Sunderland and Newcastle and had a couple of reunions to attend to (my friends Clare Tweedy and Paddy Campbell) and I enjoyed my time here. If you fancy heading to Sunderland, you now know where to stay!
Here are the details:
5 Roker Terrace
Here are my videos from my stay at Chaise Guest House, Sunderland, England: