Weekend Journals are a series of beautifully curated guide books to Cornwall, London & Provence by Milly Kenny-Ryder. Each book takes readers through carefully sought out and discovered places to stay, eat, drink, shop and enjoy local culture. A family project, the books were shot by Gabriel Kenny-Ryder and designed by Simon Lovell.
With staycations still high on the agenda this year, Milly’s mini guide to Cornwall will convince you to discover and eat your way through one of the most beautiful parts of the UK.
In the last 10 years, Cornwall has changed dramatically with new boutique hotels, stylish seasonal restaurants and design-led shops complementing the county’s epic coastline and nostalgic seaside charm. My family has holidayed in rural Cornwall since I was a child and it’s these fond memories along with the creative and culinary transformation that led my company Weekend Journals to create a book about the best places to explore here.
Photography: Gabriel Kenny-Ryder
“In the last 10 years, Cornwall has changed dramatically with new boutique hotels, stylish seasonal restaurants and design-led shops complementing the county’s epic coastline and nostalgic seaside charm.”
Stay: Chapel House
If you have the time it is worth travelling all the way down to the tip of Cornwall, and more specifically to Penzance where the lovely Chapel House is found. This sophisticated, restored townhouse is on the corner of Chapel Street, one of Penzance’s most picturesque roads. Owner Susan Stuart has thoughtfully designed the six double bedrooms and two suites to offer guests a luxurious and serene place to stay. The communal areas are equally welcoming and in the downstairs dining room Susan hosts nourishing breakfasts and dinners, when requested.
London foodies will know the Primeur, Westerns Laundry and Jolene trio of restaurants. Chef and co-owner of these eateries is David Gingell, who hails from Cornwall, so it makes sense that he finally decided to open a restaurant here. Fitzroy has put the small coastal town of Fowey back on the map as a foodie destination. The dining room is filled with furniture by local craftsmen, Able Provisions, and the food and wine is ultra seasonal and unique.
Bar: Seafood Bar by Verdant
Cornwall is known for its abundant, fresh seafood but it can be hard to find a place worth eating that isn’t overrun with tourists. This little, unsuspecting bar by Verdant Brewing Co was founded in 2014 by friends Adam, James and Rich. The cosy venue serves their unfiltered craft beer alongside an ever-changing menu of moreish seafood dishes.
Coffee: Origin, Penryn
If you are a speciality coffee fan you’ll know Origin coffee, as this Cornish company now supplies beans to some of the best coffee shops in the UK. Origin was founded in 2004 by Tom Sobey and the company’s first coffee shop opened in Porthleven in 2013. As their reputation grew so did their family of coffee shops, The Warehouse is a gem on the sleepy Penryn high-street. Serving hearty brunch dishes alongside their unrivalled single-origin coffees, it is the perfect weekend destination.
I never leave No. 56 empty handed. This charming boutique in Penzance has a beautiful curated selection of ceramics, stationery and garments, some of which are designed by the shop’s owner Carole Elsworth. Pick up a plate from local potter Rebecca Proctor, a bottle of J Herbin violet-scented ink or a few beeswax candles.
Experience: Hidden Hut
Cornwall’s feast nights are unbeatable and none sell out faster than Hidden Hut. Simon Stallard’s famous feasting events take place on the Roseland Peninsula, on a patch of rugged coastline. Guests bring their own plates and cutlery and gorge on Simon’s appetising seasonal food, anything from paella to whole grilled Cornish lobsters. The rest of the time Hidden Hut operates as an unassuming café; stop by for a pick-me-up pasty on a beach walk.
Art: Barbara Hepworth Museum and Sculpture Garden
There is something beautifully solemn and calming about the Barbara Hepworth sculpture garden in St Ives. Quietly nestled amongst tropical plants and flowers are some of Hepworth’s most magical works. St Ives has a long history as a home for major artists and potters, Barbara Hepworth is undoubtedly the most prolific and a trip to this museum and garden is always memorable.
Visit: The Minnack
Hidden away on the scenic cliffs of Porthcurno is the enchanting Minack Theatre. Built in 1931 by Rowena Cade and her gardener, this al fresco theatre is a magical place to see musical and theatrical shows. Sometimes visitors may even catch a glimpse of dolphins jumping through the endless azure sea in the theatre’s background.
Cornwall is one of the most beautiful parts of the UK, but it’s also an intimidating one to navigate. There is so much to see, do and eat on every side of the peninsula, so if you’re looking for a bible to guide you through your trip, this is exactly what you’re looking for. Follow @weekendjournals for more inspiration too.