The Bildeston Crown

Bildeston, Suffolk

A ‘cosy, friendly restaurant-with-rooms’, this timber-frame, former 15th-century merchant’s house has been an inn for some 400 years. More

Good Hotel Guide Review

A ‘cosy, friendly restaurant-with-rooms’, this timber-frame, 15th-century former merchant’s house has been an inn for some 400 years. It is owned by Suffolk farmer and businessman James Buckle, who supplies produce to the kitchen, while Hayley and Chris Lee, manager and head chef, run the business. The style is ‘traditional English but playful’ says a Guide insider, the bedrooms are ‘full of character and charm’. They are individually styled, each different. One triple-aspect room has an antique four-poster with damask bed coverings. A real princess might prefer a French-inspired king-size bed finished in silver, a huge walk-in shower and a double-ended bateau bath. ‘Artwork adorns the walls’ in public rooms with ‘crackling log fires’ and ‘very soft pop music’. ‘Food is at the heart of the place.’ In the candlelit restaurant, Chris Lee’s short menus showcase Suffolk ingredients, perhaps loin of local rabbit, duck liver, beetroot, fennel and endive. Veggie option include truffle tortellini, salsify, Roscoff onions. Service was ‘charming’. Breakfast is ‘good and plentiful’, with ‘delicious orange juice, butter on a stone slab, a tasty vegetarian special made just for me’. (RF)

Hotel details


104 High Street


01449 740510




all year, no accommodation 24–26 Dec, New Year’s Day.


2 bars, restaurant, 2 private dining areas, lift, free Wi-Fi, in-room TV (Freeview), courtyard, 3 small patios, parking, mobile phone reception variable, restaurant and bar wheelchair accessible, adapted toilet.

Background music

in public areas.


all ages welcomed.


allowed in some rooms and in bar, not in restaurant.

Credit cards

Amex, MC, Visa.


per room B&B single £70–£180, double £95–£180. À la carte £40.