The King’s Arms and Royal Hotel, Godalming

Exterior of the Kings Arms and Royal Hotel, Godalming

What’s The King’s Arms and Royal Hotel like?

This traditional coaching inn has been at the heart of historic Godalming High Street for hundreds of years. Its previous guests have included European royalty and Tsar Peter the Great, who is said to have left without paying his bill. Nowadays, the hotel is part of the Coaching Inn Group, which has lovingly restored the building to its former glory.

How dog-friendly is The King’s Arms and Royal Hotel?

Good. No special provisions are provided so you’ll need to bring your own beds, bowls and food but visiting dogs will find a big jar of treats waiting for them on the bar. Guests are welcome to dine with their dogs in either the bar area or outdoor courtyard – and if they’re lucky, they might even get a sausage for breakfast. Up to two dogs are welcome to stay per room for an additional charge of £15 per night.

Bedroom at the Kings Arms & Royal Hotel, Godalming

Tell me more about The King’s Arms and Royal Hotel

There are 21 stylish rooms at the three-storey hotel, ranging from Classic Doubles to Deluxe Suites. Only one room is located on the ground floor, however, and that was our dog-friendly Deluxe Double. Room 301 – or The Victoria and Albert Suite – is a real treat and even has its own enclosed patio area so is perfect for dog owners. From here, a gate leads in to the hotel’s ‘secret’ courtyard garden and car park so it’s really easy to get in and out.

Lots of pictures of Victoria and Albert adorn the walls. And while I was initially concerned because the room was right next to the toilets for the bar, there were two doors and a porch-like area separating you from other customers so noise wasn’t a problem at all. I imagine it could get a bit more lively during the summer months, especially if the courtyard garden is full, but when we visited on a rainy March day, it was fine.

Another thing that’s not a problem with this room is space, because it’s huge! As well as the bedroom, there is a separate seating area/lounge with a fireplace and desk. Here, you’ll also find a lovely tea and coffee station complete with biscuits, Fairtrade chocolate bars and branded Coaching Inn Group mugs. There is also a small selection of books for guests to enjoy (including one on local history) and some playing cards.

The super comfy bed, with its gilded feature headboard, is the main focus of the room though. Blackout curtains ensure it stays nice and dark and as well as good WiFi and a flatscreen TV, it is lovely to have a little retro radio too. The recently refurbished en-suite shower room is also great and comes with complimentary H2K toiletries designed for the Coaching Inn Group, plus the company’s signature rubber duck.

Vegan burger at the Kings Arms & Royal Hotel, Godalming

What’s the food like at The King’s Arms and Royal Hotel?

Really tasty. The seasonal menus have something for everything, from beef shin bourguignon to sea bass and more. My Moving Mountains vegan burger, pictured above, was delicious and I can also recommend the deep-fried breaded brie as a starter. If you’re not in the mood for a full meal, the hotel offers a selection of smaller sharing plates as well as light bites such as salads. Kids can also eat for free on Sundays when you purchase a full-price adult main.

During the day, the hotel is a popular spot for locals to catch up over coffee and a cake. And breakfast is well worth getting out of bed for, too. There are some great continental and cooked options to choose from but I recommend trying the vegan breakfast, just to sample the vegan black pudding. Be warned though – if your morning trip to the restaurant coincides with the beer delivery, don’t expect breakfast to be a peaceful, relaxing experience!

Are there resident dogs at The King’s Arms and Royal Hotel?

No, but you may well meet other pooches staying at the hotel – and you’re sure to make plenty of new four-legged friends when you’re walking around Godalming.

Phillips Memorial Park, Godalming

Where are the best dog walks near The King’s Arms and Royal Hotel?

The Phillips Memorial Park, just behind the hotel, is very popular with dog walkers. This peaceful green space runs alongside the River Wey and encompasses meadows and fields, as well as a bandstand and skate park. It opened in 1914 as a tribute to local lad Jack Phillips, who was the Chief Wireless Telegraphist on the Titanic. Tragically, Jack went down with the ill-fated ship in 1912, four days after his 25th birthday. Be sure to seek out the impressive Phillips Memorial Cloister that honours his bravery.

I can also recommend a trip to the wonderful Winkworth Arboretum, just a few miles from Godalming town centre. It was created in the early 20th Century by Wilfrid Fox, a local doctor who was keen to preserve the wooded hillside near his home. Dogs are welcome at the arboretum all year round but it’s best to visit in spring and autumn, when the 1,000 different species of trees and shrubs explode into colour. At the time of writing, entrance to the National Trust site cost £13 per adult.

Restaurant at the Kings Arms and Royal, Godalming

What Ernie and Stan loved about The King’s Arms and Royal Hotel

Having their own little garden, the sausage for breakfast, the dog treats on the bar

What I loved about The King’s Arms and Royal Hotel

The stylish decor, the excellent in-room facilities, the friendly staff

How to book The King’s Arms and Royal Hotel

Overnight stays start from £89, based on two people sharing a Classic Double on a room-only basis. For more information or to book, visit The King’s Arms and Royal Hotel website.

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