Last weekend I decided to take advantage of having been ‘abandoned’ (Hubby and munchkins have escaped to Tropical Islands Germany, guest post from them coming soon) and whisked Mum away for her first ever AirBnB experience. Being the first Friday of the school holidays I didn’t want to drive too far, so chose Mumbles as it’s only a half hour from my hometown. It’s a former Victorian finishing village situated at the ‘end’ of Swansea Bay, famous for Catherine Zeta Jones and Joes Ice Cream (it also marks the start of the Gower Peninsula – Britains first Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, but more on that another day!).
Having only visited for a day trip or an evening out previously, we decided to go for a night away. We booked three days before our arrival on the basis the weather looked glorious, which of course meant the heavens opened a few hours after we pitched up… But we still had a fabulous time!
We chose Mumbles as we wanted somewhere with lots of choice for eating and drinking, and to be able to go out for the evening on foot! There are plenty of B&B options along Mumbles Road and also hotels in the area, based on the extra space and the reviews for the property we chose. We had an entire guest suite to ourselves – it had its own access with porch, a living and kitchen area (complete with piano), upstairs there was a bedroom and shower room, and outside a shared garden.
As it was her first time, Mum used my AirBnB referral code. If you’d like to receive a £25 discount you can use my referral link too, click here! Mum wasn’t sure what to expect, but we were issued with clear instructions of how to find the key on arrival and where to leave it, and were pleased when the owner said she was happy for us to check in early if we arrived before 3pm.
While the accommodation could be described as basic, it had everything we could need and was (most importantly to Mum) clean, plus the location was absolutely spot on! We had parking (which isn’t always easy in these parts), a variety of shops, bars and restaurants were a short walk away and the garden backed onto the coastal path offering fantastic views of Swansea Bay from both the patio (complete with table and chairs, which we put to use!) and the bedroom balcony. We would happily stay again, you can find the listing here. You can also see the varying weather conditions below!
Dinner & Drinks
For drinks we stopped at Croeso Lounge, part of the relatively new Oyster Wharf development on the front. A member of the Lounge chain which started in my adoptive home of Bristol, it follows the same basic formula of mismatched decor and standard bar fayre but with the added bonus of gorgeous views. In fact, a friendly member of staff who had just finished his shift saw us looking for a table, and having finished taking pics of his own beverage with the view for social media, promptly gave us his table so that we could enjoy – which was very kind!
We had initially thought to try something new but with the grey and the drizzle we decided we’d prefer to go back to an old favourite, Verdis. A family run Italian cafe/restaurant/ice cream parlour – it’s long been a favourite of Mum and I. It’s large and relaxed (you order at the counter, wear what you like) with floor to ceiling windows allowing customers to appreciate the incredible views of the bay. There were a lot of staff on shift when we arrived but as it was the end of the day not that many customers. You can chose your own spot and we were lucky enough to bag a window seat – when another couple left – which was marvellous even with the tide being out and weather a little grey.
Mum and I plumped for a Pinot Grigio Rosé (our standard) which was pleasant, and having stuffed our faces with nibbles earlier decided to split a pizza and salad in the hope we’d room for an ice cream sundae afterwards. We opted for the Quattro Stagioni, which had four separate toppings of pepperoni, mushrooms, ham and olives, handy for Mum and I to cut into eighths to have a slice of each.
It reminded me of Argentinian pizza i.e. VERY cheesey with a fairly solid base. The ham was shredded, roasted and very lean, and I loved that they didn’t scrimp on mushrooms or olives (Pizza Express take note!). Best pizza I’ve ever eaten? No, but we still very much enjoyed. We accompanied it with the tomato and red onion salad, which did exactly what it said on the tin! (A few leaves wouldn’t have gone amiss, but it did have a good drizzle of oil). The main event however was always going to be the ice cream…
They have up to 30 flavours on offer at any time which are made fresh each day. I usually go for the Cookie Crunch Sundae (cookies & cream ice cream, caramelised hazelnut crunch, hot chocolate fudge sauce & whipped cream) but having eaten a variety of flavours on honeymoon in Italy and in my new favourite Swoon in Bristol decided to go for the Hazelnut Basket. Essentially the same as the Cookie Crunch, but swop the cookies and cream ice cream for hazelnut and add in a choccy lined waffle basket. YUM!!!
I love the ice cream/nut/cream combo for its textures, and the hazelnut ice cream held up very well against other hazelnut gelatos I’ve tried on my travels. I would have liked more of the hot fudge sauce as it didn’t make it’s usual impact but then maybe I’m just greedy. Okay I am just greedy. On the other hand, the dish didn’t really need the waffle basket and neither did we, but we were being little piggys and it was yummy so why the heck not. Verdis serves tasty pizza, makes an excellent sundae and has lovely views – we will be back.
Ambience: 8 (would have been higher but we were there late so it was pretty empty, shame!)
Where: Mumbles Road, Knab Rock, The Mumbles, The Mumbles, Swansea SA3 4EE