The Hog Hotel in Pakefield is a small hotel with big aspirations. Offering some of the best food and drink to be found on the Suffolk coast, The Hog has it all – beautiful décor, clean spaces, comfortable bedrooms, and a food and drink menu rich with local produce.
The picturesque suburb of Pakefield in Lowestoft was once a small fishing village with strong maritime roots. Set on a cliff, Pakefield offers panoramic views out to the North Sea. Just a short stroll from the beach is where you will find The Hog Hotel, a boutique sixteen en-suite bedroom property complete with a restaurant, bar, and garden.
The food is created by talented Executive Head Chef Terry Balme and his team. Both guests and non-residents can enjoy everything from a light bite at lunch to a full á la carte menu in the evening. And then there is the best Sunday lunch in the region on offer as well! Terry’s food is complemented by a wide range of handpicked wines, gins, spirits, and cocktails in the bar.
As for the hotel side, tastefully decorated, dog friendly rooms and a wheelchair access suite are available, supported by an easy access route around the perimeter and throughout the hotel making The Hog Hotel welcoming for those in wheelchairs or who have difficulty with stairs.
Despite the setbacks that the hospitality industry suffered during the pandemic, The Hog Hotel’s owners, local businessman Nathan Jones and his wife Sally, are now setting their sights on truly putting Pakefield, and the hotel, on the map. The hotel is already the number 1 rated hotel in the area and is the only member of the invite-only Good Hotel Guide in Lowestoft. With an emphasis on developing the best team, Nathan and Sally have worked hard over the summer to create the finest group, both front of house and behind the doors, that The Hog Hotel can offer.
Joining Terry on the stoves is experienced management couple John King and Agata Swidowska, who are now at the helm of The Hog Hotel. This step means that the whole team are now focused on gaining various accreditations for the hotel including the 4-star AA status; 2 AA Rosette standard for food and service; and Quality and Tourism recognition, to sit alongside the Best of the Best rating on Trip Advisor. This would be a first for Lowestoft, which itself has some exciting regeneration plans, and is why the hotel is turning heads and getting some rave reviews.
John and Agata recently moved to the area with their young family and bring with them a fantastic pedigree from their time at a number of Red Carnation properties, including luxury hotels in the Channel Islands as well as working at Claridge’s. They are delighted to be managing a property that is so recently refurbished and are now focusing on growing the business with Terry’s excellent food to support their plans.
Alongside them is hotel supervisor Josh Flegg, who has a flair for customer service and terrific cocktails, and with this dynamic team in place, the stage is set. Indeed, The Hog has already become the place to stay for visiting celebrities and production teams. They have hosted the royal family – well, the cast of The Crown – and teams shooting adverts locally on the glorious beaches. Most recently, Nick Knowles and his crew, who were filming in the area, stayed at The Hog.
Nathan and Sally are adamant, however, that Lowestoft regulars are just as important, and next year the hotel will launch a loyalty scheme for those who have stayed for a number of times, or for those who dine at The Hog regularly. This platinum status will allow them to have a variety of additional benefits including a complimentary birthday meal, additional nights at a reduced rate, rewards for recommending friends, and other similar initiatives. For the wider customer base, they also plan to have some special events, such as cooking classes with Terry, hosting fashion shows with local boutiques, wine tastings, and flower arranging masterclasses with local florists. The Hog Hotel Events business is growing strongly too, with the hotel having already hosted small wedding receptions, big birthday meals, engagement parties, baby showers, and wakes.
The month of December is already looking very busy, with people planning to finally let their hair down after a miserable festive season in 2020, and several key dates are already booked out with groups of Christmas parties – anything from 4 to 40 people. There is still availability, and the four-course menu for £32 is proving popular. To make things easier for guests and the team at The Hog, pre-orders are requested, and Terry can confirm that the Sriracha spiced Marie Rose king prawn cocktail served with lemon wedge, smoked paprika, wholemeal loaf tin, and butter is already a favourite starter. It comes as no surprise that the roast Norfolk Bronze turkey with chipolata wrapped in Dingley Dell streaky bacon and all the trimmings, top the main course orders. There are also some superb choices for vegetarians and vegans.
The hotel and restaurant will shut on Christmas Day in order to give the team a well-deserved break but will reopen on 8 January, and there are already huge plans for 2022 including Valentines packages, Mother’s Day, and other special occasions. Even more excitingly, The Hog plans to launch a fabulous afternoon tea experience from mid-January, perhaps to rival even that of Claridge’s, as well as a series of music and food events. There may even be some special dinner, bed and breakfast packages pop up for the quieter evenings, offering the treat of a night away even if you live relatively locally. Keep an eye on social media for all events and promotions. And of course, if you are struggling for Christmas gift ideas, The Hog Hotel gift vouchers make an excellent gift, and can be made into any denomination ready to use next year.
This is a small, elegant hotel with big aspirations. Whether you are a local dining in with friends or visiting from further afield, The Hog is perfect for walkers, cyclists, and shoppers, and it is the ideal base from which to explore all that East Anglia has to offer. It is little wonder that The Hog Hotel has been described as ‘THE place to stay in Lowestoft’.
- To book a table or a room, or to discuss an event, call 01502569805. thehoghotel.co.uk 41 London Road Pakefield, Lowestoft, NR33 7AA
- For Chef Terry’s fabulous sweet potato and chestnut gnocchi, buttered Brussel sprout tops, cranberry purée, Suffolk Gold, pea shoots, crispy kale recipe click here
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